Tracking your Cycle

November 6, 2014By

Woman hygiene protection, close-upWhy might it be helpful to keep track of your periods on a calendar? Well, for one reason almost every time you see a doctor for a check-up or if you have been sick, the first question she (or he) will ask you is, “When was your last period?” Having this information ready for your doctor helps her to understand how healthy you are.

Another reason is that having an idea about the timing of your next period can help you avoid that “Uh oh, I just got my period!” moment. Irregular periods are especially common in young girls who are just beginning to menstruate, as it takes a little while for your body to regulate. For example, a girl may have two 28 day cycles in a row, and then skip a month or two before the next one. Typically, these cycles regulate after a year or two. Some women do have irregular cycles for their entire lives. This is something that you will eventually discuss in detail with your doctors.

Finally, for Muslim women and girls, it’s important to track your cycle for prayer and worship purposes. It helps determine the days when you have “ritual purity” from the days when you are excused from ritual worship.

So how does one go about tracking a cycle? 

To make sure you’re prepared for every doctor appointment, and at school, you need to KYC or Know Your Cycle. Even though it comes after ovulation, the first day of your period is considered to be the first day of your menstrual . So, we count from the first day of our periods to figure out when the next one will start.

Mark the calendar on the first day of your period, with a symbol. Add the design you picked to your calendar, each day of your period, including the last day when you may only see a little bit of blood. Count 24-31 days past the first day of your period to see when you will most likely have it again. It can take time to get your own personal rhythm, but eventually you will discover how many days your period will last, and how many days between each period.

You can also download cool period trackers on your phone, tablet or laptop. There are a bunch of good ones. Period trackers are fun and really helpful. If you don’t want to use your phone to track your period, just track it on your calendar or planner. It works just the same!

You may even find that you and your BFFs cycle at the same time! Researchers don’t quite know why, but girls who spend a lot of time together, like in locker rooms or at camp, all get their periods on about the same day. So strange!

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