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PQ: What if everything goes wrong when you get your first period?

What if your period does start at school, and you aren't ready at all, and your period stains your pants, and nobody answers the phone when you call your mom and there are no extra pants that fit you at school? What do you do?

Most of the time, even when a girl's period arrives unexpectedly, it works out fine. Girls are usually able to get what they need, especially because there are tons of other girls around who probably have a spare pad.

But what if everything goes wrong for you? Take a breath. Remember that lots of other girls — from your best friend to your great-grandma — have dealt with this situation. If you have no pad, make a temporary one from toilet paper. (One girl told us she used a sock!) If your pants get stained, wrap a jacket or sweatshirt around your waist. If you don't have a jacket, ask your best friend to borrow hers.

And if you call home and no one answers, go to the nurse's office. Even if she's not there, she should have some supplies on hand for just such occasions. If the nurse isn't in, go to the office and tell the kindest woman there about your situation. She will help figure out a solution — or at least give you a safe spot to wait until your mom can get there.

Reviewed by: Mary L. Gavin, MD
Date reviewed: July 2010

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Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.

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