Managing your period can be tricky enough at home, so when your military service takes you away for a while, preparation is key.
Stock up on supplies
Try period products you don’t need to change as often:
- Period underwear
- Menstrual cups
- Menstrual discs
Test them before you leave so you know what to expect.
Bring hand sanitizer or alcohol wipes to clean your hands before changing period products. Pack unscented baby wipes in case clean bathrooms are hard to find.
Do some period math
Consider how many period products you typically use during one cycle and pack enough to last.
If you can’t pack as much as you need, ask what’s in your naval ship’s store or base exchange before you go.
Get your APO/FPO address so you can order more supplies online or have a friend or family member mail them to you.
Skip your period
Hormonal birth control can lighten or stop your period:
- Birth control pills (skip the placebo week at the end of the pack)
- Intrauterine device (IUD)
- Vaginal ring (leave the ring in the full 4 weeks instead of only 3 weeks)
- Depo-Provera shot
Prepare for unexpected bleeding
Many factors can change how often and how much you bleed:
- Intense exercise routines
- Hormonal birth control
- Perimenopause (the transition to menopause)
- Certain medical conditions, like fibroids or endometriosis
- Pregnancy or miscarriage
Pack extra panty liners to protect your underwear and uniform.
This educational resource was created with support from Sumitomo Pharma.