17 answers

11 Year Old Using a Tampon

My 11 YO is on a swim team and would like to swim while she's on per period but is finding a tampon to be hard to use. I can't think of any alternatives that could use while swimming. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

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Get her a tube of KY Jelly. Just the regular non warming stuff is the best. Lube the applicator before having her try it. Also, try the name brand ultra-slim tampons. When I was young my best friend went into the bathroom with me and while we were fully clothed showed me how to position myself and where the hole was. ;-) She was sweet and private about it. It was the nicest thing she ever did for me. One try after that and I had it.

4 moms found this helpful

My daughter (13) just tried tampons for the first time. She wanted to swim also. We use the playtex sport. They seem to be easier to slide in. She may be nervous...she is so little :(

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There are no other good alternatives (the cups are almost impossible to use until you've had sex)... BUT DO make sure she's using the tampon correctly. For my whole first year I was inserting just an inch (instead of all the way up the applicator) and then plunging. It hurts to do that, and the tampon doesn't sit high enough... so it dries you out and makes you really uncomfortable and moves around.

5 moms found this helpful

Get her a tube of KY Jelly. Just the regular non warming stuff is the best. Lube the applicator before having her try it. Also, try the name brand ultra-slim tampons. When I was young my best friend went into the bathroom with me and while we were fully clothed showed me how to position myself and where the hole was. ;-) She was sweet and private about it. It was the nicest thing she ever did for me. One try after that and I had it.

4 moms found this helpful

My daughter (13) just tried tampons for the first time. She wanted to swim also. We use the playtex sport. They seem to be easier to slide in. She may be nervous...she is so little :(

4 moms found this helpful

My 15 yr old has used tampons since she started her period around 12.

She used Playtex slender for a long time and a couple months ago, I could not find them so I got the Tampax Pearl and she loves this one.

I agree with a poster who suggested to make sure she is doing it correctly (use the instructions) and maybe putting a little KY or Vaseline on it to help with lube.

3 moms found this helpful

The OB tampons might be user friendly... since you insert it with your finger... instead of an applicator... then she can guide it/put it in by feeling her body etc., and have more control putting it in, perhaps.
Personally, I don't like applicators...

all the best,
Susan

2 moms found this helpful

I understand !! I have a 12 yr old and just started using tampons. Maybe try using a smaller type like KOTEX or sports kinds . Does she know how to put it in right? My daughter did'nt like it at first but it's better then those pads .

2 moms found this helpful

Has she tried a non-applicator tampon like ob? I know some girls/women think it is a little gross, but I find that they are shorter and much more comfortable. It is easier for me to get it into the right position and I've been using them since very nearly the beginning of my period (12 years old).

Another alternative is something called a Diva Cup. Not less gross per se than an applicator-free tampon, but I know some women swear by them. I've even considered it myself. It might be difficult for a young girl to maneuver.

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Make sure she is putting it in right. I was raised by my father and was never taught. If she is pushing it up after inserting instead of towards the back then it will feel like and does come out.

2 moms found this helpful

This might sound a little gross, but my mom was absolutely no help with this, so my friends told me to and it worked. Have her put a mirror down on the floor, and squat and pee on it. Where the pee comes from is up above the vaginal opening, so that will help her guage where to put the tampon in. Girls think that they are supposed to put it up in straight, but it should be angled back and up.

The vaseline someone suggested is necessary too. Swimming and tampons go together well. She's old enough. Make sure she changes them often.

Good luck,
D.

2 moms found this helpful

Basically she just needs to understand the anatomy of "down there" so she knows how to place the tampon. My mom explained it all to me then sent me into the bathroom alone to give it a whirl. I definitely remember slathering vaseline on the tip prior to insertion. I used the jr tampax tampons. Gettin it in far enough to eliminate discomfort is the key, I prefer the applicators as the OB's just never seemed to get pushed up enough having to use a finger. She'll figure it out with a little practice, I remember being sore, but wanted to win because I did not want to have to wear "the rag", that just seemed gross to me even if not swimming. Thank God I havent had a period in 3 years, gotta love menopause!

1 mom found this helpful

There are reusable and disposable menstrual cups that fit like a diaphragm. You need to be comfortable with your body to insert one and it can be rather messy while learning to remove them. I would strongly advise against removing them anywhere but at home until she is confident. Also if they are not inserted correctly they may not offer protection.

1 mom found this helpful

I highly recommend considering a reusable menstrual cup. There are all different sizes, some of them very small, and they are great for swimming. These cups are made of reusable silicone that catches menstrual flow and is inserted like a tampon. Also like a tampon, they are easy to use once you get the hang of it.

The Diva cups (the only brand I have been able to find in stores in the US) are actually on the larger end of the spectrum, and I'd recommend that your daughter consider a smaller cup. I like the Lady Cup (it comes in lots of fun colors- google ladycup) and both the small and large cups are smaller than the Diva cup. I ordered mine online, but have heard that ebay is a great way to get the cups for a better price.

Also, this message board has lots of info on all different kinds of cups. Here are some links (the last one has a bit about a teenage daughter using the cup too):
http://community.livejournal.com/menstrual_cups/2010/07/
http://community.livejournal.com/menstrual_cups/648061.html
http://community.livejournal.com/menstrual_cups/1285963.html

Good luck! I wish I'd known about these years ago.

1 mom found this helpful

Hi Mama-
There is a brand called "instead." I usually find it at Walgreens because Target stopped carrying it. It is a rubber cup that bends and fits to your daughters body on the inside. Now the deal here is, she should probably use them for one period before going swimming on a meet. However, I refuse to use anything else now unless there is no other alternative.
As far as tampons go, OB's are good, but your daughter needs to be moist when inserting or it can cause pain. The great thing about those is that you learn the feel of your own body and how the tampon fits.
My other suggestions are anything with a pearl applicator- the silky plastic, not just the regular plastic- or the cardboard with the applicator tip. The biggest deal with tampons is that she needs to remember to change them every 3-4 hours and she should not use the super ones unless her flow can wipe out one of those in 4 hours. The reason I say this is TSS. Your body knows for some reason that the tampon is potentially toxic. I have actually had my body push them out when they were more cotton than flow. They can also make cramping worse depending on her sensitivity.
I will say that tampons work miracles for a large number of women, but she should get in the habit of changing them regularly. Insteads are different and for some reason don't cause your body the same stress. No TSS, no issues. They are just a little different. They are also not that big, so small bodies and large bodies alike can use them.
I hope this helps
-E. M

1 mom found this helpful

My daughter - age 13 - favors OB tampons. The have not applicator; you insert it with a finger. At first she thought this was gross, but decided it was the best. It is shaped much differently than standard tampons - wider and shorter, which is good for a smaller body.

1 mom found this helpful

If you trust your daughter to be careful and very clean - tampons are fine. I started using OB when I was 14 - my aunt is a nurse and she told me about them. They are very small - no applicator so she'll need to wash her hands well - they are so small you can hide one in a coin purse or somewhere else discreetly. I love them they don't leak or fall out like the other kinds.

1 mom found this helpful

i agree with the mirror suggestion. the little diagrams on the instructions don't mean much until you see it for real. also, perhaps she could practice using a lubricant when she doesn't have her period. that could take some of the drama out of it. but make sure she uses a lubricant!!!

1 mom found this helpful

I dont know of alternatives but here is what helped me when I first started using them. Aim for the small of your back. Put it in "far up" or it'll be too low and painful. Don't change too often (ie, put it in before swim meet, then pull it out when it's over an hour later.) It won't be wet enough to slide out without hurting. But it's also important to not leave it in too long. Change every 4-5 hours or so.

I personally, even now when I'm older, don't use tampons overnight (I'm lucky in that my flow is really light overnight anyway.) and I only use them my first 2-3 days (my periods last 7-8 days) when the flow is heavy enough to warrant it. Pulling out dry tampons is not any fun!

1 mom found this helpful

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