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TMI Q about little girls and horse riding


SKL
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My almost-7-year-old just had a riding lesson followed by a swimming lesson.  Her nanny called me from the pool to say there is blood in dd's undies.  She asked my dd about it and dd said she had been riding roughly or however you say that.  Is this normal?

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I don't know if it is normal or not. I've heard of it being theoretically possible to break the hymen riding, but I've never personally known of riding to cause any bleeding.

 

The most likely cause of bleeding would be severe chafing caused by poor clothing choice and/or poor technique. (Pants should be snug, form fitting, not bunching up, no or flat seams, etc.) If she was wearing "whatever" jeans/pants and/or in a group lesson where little attention was being paid to her specific riding technique, then I'd definitely guess chafing.

 

If there is ANY chance she was harmed by a person, I'd get her to the pediatrician tomorrow for a checkup to be certain. (To check for internal signs of trauma which would be very different from the trauma that could be caused by chafing from riding -- which would be purely external).

 

((((hugs))))

 

If it's chafing (most likely for sure), then I'd apply thin coats of Vaseline until healed. And, I'd talk to the riding instructor (assuming she is female) for recommendation for better clothing AND to make sure she knows that she must pay close attention to dd's riding form. 

 

 

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She was wearing cotton undies, leggings, and (at her request) a shorts-skirt thing over the leggings.  All soft cotton, but there probably could have been bunching.  Miss A also wipes rather vigorously (dislikes the feeling of being wet) so I wonder if that is part of it.

 

I doubt that there was opportunity for her to be hurt by someone during the riding lesson, but I will ask some open-ended questions just in case.

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She was wearing cotton undies, leggings, and (at her request) a shorts-skirt thing over the leggings.  All soft cotton, but there probably could have been bunching.  

 

Those clothes seem, to me, rather soft for riding.  You might want to look into woven, rather than knitted, trousers for riding.  

 

L

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I have ridden my entire life and have been on horses in every type of clothing I had (many not really suitable for riding). I have had chaffing before, but never there and never enough for bleeding. That strikes me as really, really strange and would freak me out a little. I suppose that if there was already some sort of injury of some sort to the area, that riding could cause it to bleed easier than if it was just riding alone.

*hugs*  I would take her to a doctor.

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One thing about my daughter, she has an incredibly high pain tolerance when she wants to.  This is the kid who used to beg the doctor to give her a shot.  (No kidding.)  So, she might not have adjusted the way most people would upon feeling uncomfortable.

 

Once before she had a tiny bit of blood in her underwear.  I wish I could remember whether it was on a day when she was riding.  I asked her a few questions and concluded it was nothing concerning.

 

As far as foul play, her sister is right there with her and as far as I know, only the mom and daughter farm owners and maybe some kids were around.  Plus there was only about 45 minutes from the time I dropped them off and the time the nanny arrived to pick them up (at which time they were on the horses).  I will keep my ears open but I doubt that foul play was an issue.

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It doesn't sound like either you or the nanny have actually visually inspected the area?  You need to see if there are any cuts, bruising, chafing, etc. and where it is.  Just because there is blood in the panties does not mean that the blood came from the vaginal area but if there is no sign of abrasions on the outer skin, then the implications become that it could be early menarche or abuse.  (And it can take very little time to abuse a child - esp. one with a high pain tolerance.)

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My dd has ridden in many types of clothing for 4 years with no blood or anything from it. Is the saddle she is using a good fit for her? If she does not know how it is supposed to feel, then maybe it is too small? I hope you get this figured out. If nothing sticks out as the cause, then I would see her pedi just to make sure nothing is wrong in that area. Maybe she has some extra skin that gets rubbed the wrong way or something.

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If the child has poor technique and poor clothing, then it could easily be chafing/abrasion in the vulva area, especially if she is learning to do "sitting trot". You have to learn to tip your pelvis properly to comfortably sit a trot, or, for that matter canter (which is generally easier to do, but still feasible to do incorrectly). Of course, a hard, poor landing in the saddle at any gait faster than a walk could also abrade/bruise that tender skin. If she has some chafing from overly vigorous drying, that can cause trouble too. 

 

One of my dd's had that issue of overly vigorously drying b/c she didn't like the "wet" feeling. She caused what looked like chapping in her entire vulva area. She was a bit younger, maybe 3 or 4, and it took a few months of me reminding her NOT to keep rubbing and drying, as well as a few times daily application of thin coats of Vaseline, to heal the area and break the habit. If she had chapping like this, then any extra trauma from riding could have caused a break in the skin, thus bleeding. 

 

Her high pain tolerance could have helped this to get severe w/o complaint.

 

If I were you, I'd take a look after a bath, then I'd apply Vaseline (thin coat) and I'd also coach her NOT to rub/dry excessively. Teach her to pat gently, then supervise her. Keep your eye on her bathroom visits and reapply Vaseline regularly until she is healed.

 

Kids get those crazy chapped lips b/c of this sort of habit. You have to help her break the habit. Assuming that is what is happening.

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Piper had some bleeding down there recently, she had strep infection in that area and it caused the skin to be irritated to the point of breaking.  She told me her lady bits hurt, and when I checked, it was bleeding very slightly on the inside. It didn't even look that red.  Our ped said it was very common and antibiotics cleared it up.

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I had that from horseriding as a teenager, but I have an unusual situation where even as an adult the skin can tear very easily and is not elastic.  Also, how much blood are we talking about?  My situation causes a few drops at most.  It is very clearly coming from this area outside and not inside.

 

(And yes, if anyone is wondering it is indeed sometimes a bummer.  :o  And no, it did not go away after I birthed a child.)

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I rode competitively as a child. English. Hunter jumper. In proper clothes. I have a distinct memory of getting very excited at ten, thinking my period had started. My mom thought so too. It was after a tough lesson, and in retrospect I believe my hymen was broken. Not a big deal, not horribly painful, but a smear of blood. My actual period didn't start for a few years.

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I don't think I ever had bleeding, but I remember riding as a child (even just on a pony) was very painful for me. I was very small and didn't have much cushion at all.

 

Miss A is a skinny thing.  She can comfortably wear size 3 shorts.  Her undies are size 2-3 and some of them have been taken in at the waist.  So that could be part of it - no natural padding.  ;)

 

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From the photo it is a little hard to tell but it seems she may be leaning forward. Like Stephanie said, you can get sore by riding on your private parts rather than your "seat bones" (your buttocks). Skin on a little girl is tender and thin. I suppose there could be chafing. I agree with Jean; you need to inspect it visually.

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She was out most of the day yesterday, but I finally got to examine the evidence.  It was just a little blood, but it was also in her clean underwear that she put on after swimming as well.  The area is still quite tender but she is proceeding with normal activities.  She says she's afraid to pee because it hurts.  :(  She doesn't want me to put anything on it.  I'm sure healing will be quick as it always is with her.

 

I will be contacting the riding instructors to make sure they coach her on how to avoid this.

 

Thanks for everyone's advice and experience!

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I'd want to take a sample to the Dr to check for a UTI. My DD has frequent UTIs and never has a fever with them and always seems perfectly fine other than sometimes complaining of a weird or painful feeling. If you're lucky, the Dr will just let you pick up and drop off a cup without an exam.

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I'd go to the doc to rule out an infection, too. Especially if she has been swimming a lot. I swear, I pick up some kind of infection every time I take my dd to the pool. And if she does have some kind of chafing injury, you might want to hold off on the swimming until it heals. I can't imagine the chlorine would feel too good on that.

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From the photo it is a little hard to tell but it seems she may be leaning forward. Like Stephanie said, you can get sore by riding on your private parts rather than your "seat bones" (your buttocks). Skin on a little girl is tender and thin. I suppose there could be chafing. I agree with Jean; you need to inspect it visually.

I agree with this completely. My daughter rides, so I questioned her about it. She said that she does not seem to be sitting properly in the picture, although her posture could have been different when she was actively riding. She said that when you are sitting properly, your private parts do not make contact with the saddle. She is also wondering if she may be sitting too far up on the saddle and is bumping things with the pommel which is curved upward. I think the cushion may just mask the problem if the goal is for her to learn to ride properly. Whatever happened, I hope you figure it out. It sounds so painful!

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Skimming because I don't ride horses.  When you wrote that it hurts to urinate, a UTI was my first thought.

 

One of my teenage daughters was going to gymnastics and actually ended up with an internal abscess.  The doctor missed it during the exam and dd insisted that the doc look again.  She found it the second time.  Of course, we were questioned about abuse and because of her age, sexual activity.  That part wasn't fun.  I'm glad we went as the abscess much larger than I had imagined.

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I would get her to the doctor.  UTIs can be very serious if not treated, so you would want to get that ruled out.  But I would also very much want a doctor to check to see what is causing the bleeding.

 

 

I had UTIs at her age and urinated blood.  It was very painful.

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I had UTIs at her age and urinated blood.  It was very painful.

 

It's not as common, but it's possible to feel no pain and still have an infection that's progressed to the point of urinating blood.

 

I'd take her in for testing to rule out a UTI.

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I rode competitively as a child. English. Hunter jumper. In proper clothes. I have a distinct memory of getting very excited at ten, thinking my period had started. My mom thought so too. It was after a tough lesson, and in retrospect I believe my hymen was broken. Not a big deal, not horribly painful, but a smear of blood. My actual period didn't start for a few years.

I had a similar experience, so this was my first thought. I would still have her see a doctor, just to rule out a UTI. 

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