There's a first time for everything! The Doctors discuss how to prepare for some of life's most important firsts.
"We forget to have more firsts," ER physician Dr. Travis Stork says. "Encourage everyone to go out this year and start a first or start something new. You may have to figure out how to do it, but firsts are what life is all about."
Witness a first for daytime TV as mother-to-be Elysa delivers her first baby via C-section live on The Doctors!
First Signs of Puberty
Dawn and her 12-year-old daughter, Natalee, reach out to OB-GYN Dr. Lisa Masterson for advice on how to prepare for Natalee's first menstrual period.
"It's really important to prepare girls for this," Dr Lisa says. "Make it a positive experience and talk about the body changes that are happening."
Body odor and hair, breast development and mood swings are all signals that a girl's period is coming. As a mother, prepare by re-educating yourself on the female cycle so you may accurately explain the physical changes that will take place. Incorporate your daughter into your own monthly methods, instruct her on how to properly care for her body, and explain that the first menstrual period is a positive rite of passage into womanhood. Young women who have good self-esteem and self-image are at lower risk for unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted diseases.
Dr. Lisa recommends assembling a first-time period prep kit that can be kept in a young woman's locker or backpack:
• A note to brief her on what may happen
• Pad or a tampon
• Change of underwear
• Remedy for cramps, such as over-the-counter pain medication
• A piece of chocolate
Natalee, a softball player, asks Dr. Lisa how to manage her period while staying active.
"When you first get your period, you're going to want to use pads to familiarize yourself with your cycle," Dr. Lisa says. "Once you're more experienced, you'll want to use tampons to free you up to play [softball] because it is very important for all girls to be involved in sports."
Tracy, the mother of a 12-year-old boy, is concerned about how to talk to her son about wet dreams.
For parents, pediatrician Dr. Jim Sears recommends letting your son come to you instead of approaching him about nocturnal emissions, but to prepare him early through sex education programs or by asking his pediatrician.
Your First Time "Doing the Deed"
Dr. Lisa aanswers an engaged couple's questions about their "first time" together on their upcoming wedding night.
"It's all about having a safe connection," Dr. Lisa says. "Communication is also the key. Communicate, have fun and share the love that you two want to share for the rest of your lives."
First Line of Defense against Cardiac Arrest
Heart disease is the number one killer of Americans, and the best way to prevent it is with a heart-healthy lifestyle. But while we can take certain measures to avoid heart disease, it is best to be prepared for its most lethal form, cardiac arrest — when the heart stops beating.
There is normally between three and five minutes to revive a victim who has gone into cardiac arrest with an optimal chance of survival. For every minute that passes, the chance of survival decreases by 10 percent, but knowing CPR and how to operate a portable automated external defibrillator (AED) can save a life.
"AEDs have brought saving lives to a whole new level," Dr. Travis says. "They are so easy to use, and we now make sure to have an AED nearby [in the office] in case someone has a cardiac arrest. If an AED is nearby, it can save a life."
Learn what to do if someone is having a heart attack:
- Check if the person is breathing
- Check for a pulse
- Raise legs 18 inches off the ground to allow blood to flow towards the heart
If these actions don't restore a pulse, perform CPR until an ambulance arrives. If the person regains consciousness, give him or her aspirin to thin the blood.
- Don't panic — take action and dial 911
- Don't leave the person alone
- Don't allow the person to convince you not to call for medical help
- Don't wait to see if the symptoms will go away