What it’s like to deal with your period when you’re a ballet dancer.

“You can’t wear underwear under your tights as your leotards are normally really high cut and they would show and it can feel really uncomfortable with them too,” former dancer Imogen* told Mamamia of her experience.

This makes it difficult to use a pad, which can also prove cumbersome while dancing, making the wearer feel uncomfortable or self-conscious or limiting the fluidity of movement.

“I don’t know what you’d do if you couldn’t wear tampons – it’s so hard to dance in a pad,” she said.

“I wore tampons, but you did hear stories of people wearing tampons while performing and you’d see the string or something.”

While a tampon may seem like a straightforward solution, for many preteens and teens they can be impractical or too intimidating.

It’s a question regularly asked in forums of parents whose daughters dance, with the option of wearing a skirt or shorts over tights not always available.

“One teacher I asked said that at her school (where she went when she was younger), girls were basically forced to use tampons! Nothing else would be allowed, and a female teacher would take the girl to the bathroom to assist. The only alternative was to sit out,” one parent wrote on mothering.com.

“I danced for years, and wore wingless pads stuck to my tights for about a year after I started my period, then started with junior tampons when I was about 14 and would just wear them for the class and then go back to pads when I was done with class,” wrote another user.

“By 15 I was in tampons full time because I HATE that ‘dripping’ sensation and frankly, a pad mushing around when trying to dance was very uncomfortable, so I totally get why they discourage it.”