Women use a period calculator to predict their next period and also when trying to conceive (make) a baby. This is why most period calculators include ovulation and fertile 'windows' to help calculate when this can/could happen.
When using this calculator, it will tell you when to expect your next period, as well as advise ovulation and when you're most fertile.
I've explained what these mean below, but if you want to track your period only, just look at the 'start of your new cycle' highlighted dates.
'Ovulation' is the release of a mature egg from one of the ovaries, which happens every month. A woman is most fertile around the time of ovulation. 'Fertile', 'fertility' or a 'fertile window' is the time when there's the highest chance of conceiving (getting pregnant).
Bloody Literally Ausome Preparation
Prep and Practise
Make sure you have everything you need for your period before it starts, for example, your period undies, pads, sanitiser, disposable/rubbish bags, spare pair of underwear and anything else you think you might need.
Develop a step-by-step guide on how to change your period underwear and/or pads. Practice these steps over and over, until you're confident you'll remember these steps when the time comes to actually use them.
Consider and practice 'what if' scenarios to help you overcome obstacles if/when they occur. For example, what will you do if you go to a toilet stall that doesn't have a sanitary bin? How will you dispose of your pad?
Bloody Literally Ausome Tips
Track, Pack and Hack
Track when you get your period each month
- This will help you know when you had your last period and help to predict when you will start your next one.
- Note any symptoms you experience before (which will help to remind you that it's due) and during your period (to be prepared) so you can expect, for example, on day 2 and 3 you're likely to have a stomach ache.
- Note any pain relief you take during or leading up to your period and note if it was effective. For example, you experienced a stomach ache on day 2 and you had some pain relief (including dosage) which was helpful. This will also help to ensure you are comfortable during your period, so for example, if you need stronger pain relief because what you tried last time didn't work well or enough, alternatives can be considered.
- Take note of your period flow; how heavy the flow is and on what day. It's also a great idea to note the change in your mood and energy levels and even a change in your appetite. Keeping these details helps you closely monitor your health.
Prepare supplies at the end of your period
- Make sure you have enough pads for your next period. If you won't, add them to the family shopping list to ensure you have them in time.
- Re-stock your school bag supplies, or add items to the family shopping list to ensure you have re-stocked your bag in time for your next period.
- Re-stock any other bags you use during the week e.g. after school/activity sports bag to ensure you will have supplied for your next period.
- Make sure you have any pain relief medication replenished (and make sure you check the expiry date). If you need more, add them to the family shopping list to make sure you get them in time for your next period.
Set daily reminders and adjust your daily routine
Set a reminder for during school, e.g. recess and lunchtime, to check and/or change your undies/pad.
Set reminders for after school to check and/or change your undies/pad after school.
- Adjust your daily routine to include placing your period undies into a bucket filled with water and laundry detergent each morning and afternoon. Leave your undies there for an hour and set a reminder to rinse them properly and place them in the washing machine. (You can set a reminder to wash your day and night undies together in the evening so you only have to do this once a day and to avoid being overwhelmed in the morning before school having an additional task).
- It's really important, whether you have your period or not, to wash your private parts properly. Ensure your daily routine when you have your period includes taking extra care and effort during your period to ensure your private parts are washed and rinsed, because just like you can get body odour if you don't wash your armpits properly, the same can happen if you don't wash your private parts properly, as you can get an odour from your underwear.
- Adjust your shower routine to include a step of using a sanitary wipe on your private parts before drying yourself with your towel, to avoid staining your towel with blood. This can often occur on your heavy flow days and not because you've not washed yourself properly. (If this happens, place your towel in the wash for cleaning).
Literally Ausome Bloody Manual Tracker
If you want to do this manually, you need to start by working out the length of your average menstrual cycle.
Day one is the first day of the menstrual period and the last day is the day before the next period begins.
Do this for a few cycles and add up the total number of days, dividing it by the number of cycles. That gives you the average number of days in your menstrual cycle.
So, if your cycle lasts up to 28 days, your ovulation will be around day 14 (two weeks before your next period). This will help you calculate your future periods.