Periods can be quite a minefield. From trying to figure out when it’s due to knowing which products to use and understanding the many symptoms and issues that a period might bring your way.
This is why more and more people are turning to period tracking.
What is period tracking?
Basically, period tracking is a way to note and keep track of when your period might be due. Periods generally come every 28 days but as you probably know if you’ve gotten your period already, or spoken to people who have, it’s not always that simple. Some can have much shorter or longer periods, and they can come anywhere between every 21 or 40 days.
The duration of a period can totally change vary from person to person too, with some people having periods that last for 3 days and others than can go on for eight days.
There are so many variables, and even when it comes down to each individual person, it may vary from month to month too.
With all this in mind, it’s pretty easy to understand why tracking your period might help to you to get on with your life!
Tracking your period can help you to learn how long your period lasts and how many days between each one.
Of course, periods aren’t just about bleeding for a few days every month, as most people who have periods will know that they, unfortunately, come with a huge variety of symptoms.
For some people, uncomfortable cramps may be the biggest symptom, and while really very painful, many people find them manageable when it comes to everyday life like school and socialising. But for some the pain can be really unbearable and cause them to miss out on fun enjoyable and everyday things.
It’s a really good idea to monitor your pain levels too see if they are consistently really bad or even something that gets worse on certain months.
Of course, stomach cramps aren’t the only symptom of menstruation, as headaches, skin issues, irritability,
bloating, mood swings and overall PMS.
Tracking can help keep an eye on those symptoms to see how bad or manageable they may be, and to better understand which issues or body changes might be connected to your period.
Why is it useful?
Tracking your period can be really handy because it means you can know when to expect your period and understand which days might be best/worst during your cycle.
It also means you can keep an eye on your symptoms and understand why your mood, skin, energy levels and overall function might change at certain times of the month.
Our health can be a complicated thing and often women’s health can be underresearched and even misunderstood so it’s important to really understand your body from a young age so you can understand if anything doesn’t feel quite right.
How do I do it?
One of the best ways to get started on period tracking is an old fashioned pen and paper. A diary with dates on it is great because you can simply write a note or two about your mood, feelings and PMS. This can be as simple as a line or how you’re feeling, or a smiley/sad/confused/whatever-you-feel face alongside a note on where you are in your period (‘day 1 of bleeding’). Then the following month when you mark day 1 of your period, you can count back and see how many days in between, so that you can predict your period the following month.
If you’re not a notebook gal, try using the calendar on your phone. You can mark you period days with the letter ‘P’ or whatever works for you, and add emojis to track your mood all month, you can also use a note app to go into more detail if needed.
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There are also countless apps on the market for tracking your period, like Clue, Flo and Magic Girl which has teen girls in mind specifically, which is nice. They’re all easy to use and super to use and can notify you when you’re due your period and remind you to keep updating it, so an app might be good if you’re prone to forget!
Regardless of which method you use, tracking your period could make your life a lot easier, even with simple things like ensuring your have tampons on pads in your bag, you have pain-killers nearby or you plan your fun/sporty activities around your cycle as best you can.
This, along with understanding you body better and prioritising your health are hugely important factors in why period tracking can be so helpful.