Most girls start menstruating between the ages of 10 and 15, but some girls may start their period earlier or later. Every girl has her own schedule, but the timing of your first period can tell you and our Austin ObGyns more about your future health than you may think.
A study that was published in Circulation indicated that the timing of your first period could increase your risk of developing high blood pressure and heart disease. According to this study, women who had their first period at age 10 or younger, or age 17 or older, had an increased risk for these health problems. Women who had their first period at age 13 had the lowest risk of developing heart disease and high blood pressure.
A study conducted at Clemson University and published in Diabetes Care investigated whether the timing of your first period could affect your risk of developing gestational diabetes. The study, which involved 27,000 women, indicated that women who began menstruating at age 11 had a 39% higher risk of developing gestational diabetes than women who started menstruating at age 14. Girls who had their first period at age 12 or 13 also had a slightly higher risk than the 14-year-old girls.
When we take your health history, we always ask about the timing of your first period. Knowing when you had your first period is helpful for our Austin ObGyns, because it can help us protect your health. For example, if we know that you had your first period before age 10 or after age 17, we can be vigilant about monitoring your blood pressure and looking for signs of heart disease. Similarly, if we know that your first period happened at age 11 or younger, we can monitor you more closely for gestational diabetes during pregnancy.
Knowing the timing of your first period is another tool our Austin ObGyns use to protect your health. Contact us for an appointment.