That Said There Are Several Situations That Can Cause Period
If you get your period at the usual time, it lasts for the usual amount of days, and the amount of blood that you see is pretty typical for you, its pretty unlikely that youre pregnant, G. Thomas Ruiz, M.D., lead ob-gyn at MemorialCare Orange Coast Medical Center in Fountain Valley, California, tells SELF. But you could have bleeding in early pregnancy that just so happens to coincide with when your period is due, Dr. Schaffir says. In fact, up to 30 percent of pregnant people have some form of bleeding in early pregnancy, according to the American Pregnancy Association.
For instance, you might experience implantation bleeding, which is light spotting or bleeding that can happen when the embryo burrows into your uterine wall, and can also be a cause of bleeding in early pregnancy. But Dr. Ruiz says its unlikely this would be mistaken for a normal period because it tends to be much lighter.
Or you might have a cut or tear in your vagina, inflammation of your cervix, or irritation of your cervix from an infection that causes bleeding, Dr. Schaffir says. It can even be caused from sex: Sometimes women have blood vessels close to the surface of the cervix and, during sex, the friction causes a little bleeding, he explains. However, again, these usually produce far less blood than a period.
Can You Be Pregnant And Have A Period
Experts share why it’s physically impossible to have a period while pregnant, and they give alternative reasons for bleeding during the first, second, and third trimesters.
Can you get your period while pregnant? The short answer is no. “Women can certainly have vaginal bleeding during a pregnancy, but when they bleed, they are not having a ‘period,'” explains Michele Hakakha, M.D., a board-certified obstetrician and gynecologist based in Los Angeles and co-author of Expecting 411: Clear Answers and Smart Advice for Your Pregnancy. Keep reading to learn why menstruation stops during pregnancy, as well as other possible causes of spotting during the first, second, or third trimester.
Ive Been Using Contraception Will This Affect My Cycle
This depends on what type of contraception youve been using. If youve been taking the pill, your period may be irregular when you first come off it, so try to give yourself up to 3 months for your natural menstrual cycle to get back to its normal routine.
The first period after stopping the pill is known as a withdrawal bleed. The next one after this is your first natural period.
The contraceptive injection can also affect your cycle. Your periods may change and become irregular, heavier, shorter, lighter or stop altogether. This can carry on for some months after you stop the injections.
If you use the contraceptive implant your fertility will return to normal as soon as it is taken out.
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When To See A Doctor
If your periods suddenly become lighter and you think you may be pregnant, the only way to be sure is to take a pregnancy test. If the light bleeding is due to implantation, taking the test from 2-3 days after the start of the bleeding may show a positive result depending on the sensitivity of the urine test and the amount of hormones present in the body. But if the test is negative, it may still be too early, so wait another week and test again. Every woman is different and while for some the pregnancy test may be positive on the first day of your missed period, for others it may not be positive until up to one month after.
If you are not pregnant, having a noticeably light period from time to time normally isnt the sign of any problem. Sometimes this may be due to temporary disregulation in the menstrual cycle, such as during periods of stress. However, you should see a doctor if you have persistent irregular periods , severe lower abdominal pain, or any other unusual symptoms such as excessive hair growth or weight loss, because these could be indicative of an underlying condition.
Featured image is of menstrual pads scattered against a blue background
One of the first signs of pregnancy can be a light period, and it can be difficult to tell whether it is due to pregnancy or not as the bleed can occur at around the same time of a normal period.
Can I Bleed During Pregnancy
Even though your periods stop, you can still experience bleeding during pregnancy. This happens in almost 1 in 4 women for different reasons. Many women who bleed during pregnancy go on to deliver a healthy baby. However, you should immediately contact your doctor or midwife if you notice bleeding from your vagina at any time during your pregnancy.
In the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, the fertilised egg planting itself in your womb may cause bleeding. This is known as implantation bleeding. It normally only lasts for a few days. However, bleeding during early pregnancy could signal that the fertilised egg has planted itself outside the womb this is called an ectopic pregnancy. It could also signal a miscarriage.
In the later stages of pregnancy, vaginal bleeding can have many different causes.
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Can You Get Pregnant Right Before Or After Your Period
Doctors generally agree that people are not likely to get pregnant in the days leading up to their period. This is especially true if their periods are regular and they have a 28-day menstrual cycle.
However, given the fluid nature of the fertile window, people who do not want to become pregnant should still use contraception at this time.
Sperm cells can only fertilize an egg within a 24-hour window after ovulation. If a person knows when they have ovulated and counts w days from ovulation, they should no longer be able to get pregnant before their next period.
It is, however, possible for a person to get pregnant immediately after their period. This is because sperm can still fertilize eggs for 35 days after sexual intercourse.
If a person with a short cycle has sexual intercourse right after their period and happens to ovulate early, they may ovulate quickly enough for the egg to connect with sperm cells.
Fertility Tracking For Women With Pcos And Irregular Periods
If women are not ovulating or ovulating irregularly, as in the case of polycystic ovary syndrome , they may experience irregular bleeding. Women with PCOS have bleeding that occurs randomly, not in response to a true cycle. As a result, women with PCOS cannot use their period to track their cycle. They would be better suited to discuss alternative methods of tracking fertility with their health care provider.
Similarly, women who experience irregular periods should not count on using their period to track their fertility. An average period cycle lasts 21 to 35 days from the start of one period to the start of the next period. If your periods fall out of this timeframe, then they may be irregular and not associated with ovulation.
Women may experience irregular periods for a variety of reasons like being underweight or constant and intense exercise, Harper said. However, irregular periods may be an indicator of an underlying health issue like PCOS. Speak with your provider if you believe you have an irregular menstrual cycle.
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Questions You May Be Asked
Bleeding early in pregnancy isn’t normal. But it is common. If youve seen any bleeding, you may be concerned. But keep in mind that bleeding alone doesnt mean something is wrong. Just be sure to call your healthcare provider right away. They may ask you questions like these to help find the cause of your bleeding:
When did your bleeding start?
Is your bleeding very light or is it like a period?
Is the blood bright red or brownish?
Have you had sex recently?
Have you had pain or cramping?
Have you felt dizzy or faint?
Is It Possible To Get Pregnant On The Day Of Ovulation
The menstrual cycle in women is about 6 days and ends on the day of ovulation. However, a fertile window may appear on different days of the cycle. A woman can become pregnant within a few days of her period.
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Can You Get Pregnant On Your Period
A person can get pregnant during their period, but it is unlikely.
A person is most likely to become pregnant in the middle of their menstrual cycle, which is when the ovary releases an egg in a process called ovulation.
The egg then travels to the uterus, where a sperm cell can fertilize it.
According to the Office on Womens Health , the average menstrual cycle is 28 days. The menstrual cycle is the time between the first day of one period and the first day of the next period. Ovulation usually occurs 719 days after a persons period ends.
The egg can only survive for 1224 hours after ovulation. For this reason, it must meet a sperm cell in this time for pregnancy to occur.
A person is most likely to get pregnant if they have sexual intercourse in the 3 days before and up to the day of ovulation.
Since a person with 28-day cycles typically does not ovulate until around a week after they stop bleeding, they cannot usually get pregnant during their period.
However, it is not quite as simple as this due to three main factors:
- a persons menstrual cycle length
- monthly differences in the timing of ovulation
- how long sperm stays alive inside the female body
Menstrual cycles are still normal if the period comes every 2438 days, so cycle length varies significantly between people. People with shorter menstrual cycles may ovulate closer to their period than people with longer cycles.
So, although it is possible to become pregnant during the period, it is unlikely.
What Are The Causes Of Abdominal And Back Pain
Some of the aches and pains experienced during pregnancy are thought to be due to hormonal changes. Large amounts of the hormone progesterone are produced, which are needed to sustain pregnancy. In addition to this, progesterone acts on the muscles, ligaments and joints causing them to become slacker and more flexible. This hormonal effect is thought to be responsible for some of the stitch like pains that some women experience in the lower part of the tummy and in some cases this can be quite severe. The same hormones can be responsible for constipation during pregnancy this can also cause abdominal pain.
The enlarging womb is made up of layers of muscles and is held in place in the pelvis by supporting ligaments. As the womb expands to accommodate the developing baby, it can pull on the ligaments and muscles, to cause these growing pains.
The backache that some women get in early pregnancy is also thought to be due to a hormonal effect, and the supporting muscles are softer.
Abdominal and/or backache can also be a sign of a urine infection. This may also cause burning or stinging when passing urine and the need to pass urine more frequently. You must inform your doctor of these symptoms, so that a urine test can be obtained and treatment given if needed.
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Pregnancy With A Period: Is It Possible
While some people may experience intermittent vaginal bleeding while they are pregnant, it isnt possible to have a period. Menstruation only takes place in the absence of pregnancy.
Each month, ovulation occurs when your ovary releases an egg to be fertilized by the sperm. The uterine lining thickens in anticipation of a fertilized egg being implanted, which then results in pregnancy. If an egg isnt fertilized and implanted, both the egg and the uterine lining are shed through the vagina as menstrual blood.
So, can you have a period while youre pregnant? The short answer is no. Since you dont ovulate or release an egg during pregnancy, you will not get your monthly period.
What Type Of Scan Will I Have
A vaginal scan is the best method in early pregnancy as it gives us a more accurate result at an earlier stage in pregnancy than an abdominal scan. It may be a little uncomfortable but it is safe to be done, you do not need a full bladder when having a vaginal scan. If you have concerns about a vaginal scan, please let the nurse, midwife doctor know.
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You Can Get Pregnant During Your Period
Have you ever told a partner, “We don’t have to use any birth control this time, I’m on my period?” Well, please STOP IT FOREVER. Because you absolutely can get pregnant on your period. Also, the decay of our bodies as we age is inevitable, 99.9 percent of all species that have ever lived on Earth are now extinct, and you will never be able to afford to live in an enormous apartment in New York City with your best friend Monica while you work as a waitress, no matter how many adorable chunky highlights you get in your hair. EVERYTHING IS AWFUL! SORRY!
So how exactly can you get pregnant during your period? This is primarily a risk for people with shorter cycles. Ovulation typically comes at the mid-point of your cycle â so, if you have a 30-day cycle, you’d ovulate 15 days in. The egg only survives for 24 hours following ovulation, so in this scenario, becoming pregnant during your period is not a major risk.
However, if you have a shorter cycle â one that lasts for, say, 21 days â the risk increases. This is because ejaculated sperm can live inside the human body for several days. Because of this, according to the American Pregnancy Association, if you have a short cycle, having unprotected sex towards the end of your period could mean that live sperm are still hanging around a few days later, when you ovulate.
How Soon After Giving Birth Can You Get Pregnant
Whether you’ve had a vaginal delivery or a cesarean section, your body can get pregnant shortly after delivery. You can ovulate before your first postpartum period and you can get pregnant right after ovulation. While it is not recommended to have sex before the six-week exam, it does occur.