Guidelines To Determine If What You Are Experiencing Is Heavy:
Your menstrual period lasts longer than seven days.
Your flow soaks through tampons or pads every hour for a few hours in a row.
You need to change pads or tampons during the night.
You have multiple grape-sized blood clots.
Your heavy menstrual flow keeps you from doing things you would normally do.
You are tired, have a lack of energy or are short of breath.
You feel heavy pain in your abdomen and lower back.
Make an appointment with your gynecologist if your menstrual bleeding seemsheavier than usual, or if it lasts more than seven days or impacts your life.
If you experience bleeding between periods, during or after sex, duringpregnancy or after you have entered menopause, it is important to visit yourgynecologist.
Frequently Asked Questionsexpand All
- How common is heavy menstrual bleeding?
Heavy menstrual bleeding is very common. About one third of women seek treatment for it. Heavy menstrual bleeding is not normal. It can disrupt your life and may be a sign of a more serious health problem. If you are worried that your menstrual bleeding is too heavy, tell your obstetriciangynecologist .
- When is menstrual bleeding considered heavy?
Any of the following can be a sign of heavy menstrual bleeding:
Bleeding that lasts more than 7 days.
Bleeding that soaks through one or more tampons or pads every hour for several hours in a row.
Needing to wear more than one pad at a time to control menstrual flow.
Needing to change pads or tampons during the night.
Menstrual flow with blood clots that are as big as a quarter or larger.
Heavy menstrual bleeding may be a sign of an underlying health problem that needs treatment. Blood loss from heavy periods also can lead to a condition called iron-deficiency anemia. Severe anemia can cause shortness of breath and increase the risk of heart problems.
Many things can cause heavy menstrual bleeding. Some of the causes include the following:
Bleeding disordersWhen the blood does not clot properly, it can cause heavy bleeding.
When you see your ob-gyn about heavy menstrual bleeding, you may be asked about
your birth control method
How To Know If You’re Hemorrhaging Due To A Miscarriage
Why should you know about hemorrhage or heavy bleeding associated with miscarriage? When is bleeding normal and when is it too much? What are the possible causes of hemorrhage during a miscarriage, how is it treated, and what are the potential complications?
It’s important to be aware of the signs and symptoms of excessive blood loss so that you can seek medical attention right away if needed. Hemorrhage during and after miscarriage is very uncommon but is a leading cause of mortality related to miscarriages, especially second-trimester miscarriages.
Don’t Miss: Can I Get In The Pool On My Period
When Should I Be Concerned About Blood Clots During My Period
Having a period is normal. And while a menstruation cycle can vary in length, amount and frequency, menstrual blood clots can be a scary thing when you see them. Most blood clots during a period are normal, but if you experience large blood clots and notice changes in your period, it may be time to talk to a doctor.
What Are Heavy Menstrual Periods
When you have heavy menstrual periods , you are losing more than 80 ml of blood per menstrual period and the usual amount of blood loss per period is 10 to 35 ml. You may:
- Pass large blood clots and soak through your usual pads or tampons.
- Bleed for more than 7 days.
Heavy periods can be messy and unpleasant, and they may disrupt your life. But in most cases, they arent a sign of a serious problem.
A doctor can suggest treatments to ease your symptoms and make sure that you dont have a more serious condition.
Read Also: Is Ovulation Before Or After Period
Signs And Symptoms Of Heavy Menstrual Bleeding
Symptoms of heavy menstrual bleeding may include:
- Soaking through one or more sanitary pads or tampons every hour for several consecutive hours
- Needing to wake up to change sanitary protection during the night
- Needing to use double sanitary protection to control the menstrual flow
- Menstrual bleeding that lasts longer than a week
- Symptoms of anemia, like fatigue, light-headedness and shortness of breath
- Passing blood clots larger than a quarter
- Restricting activities because of heavy menstrual flow
Causes Of Abnormal Period Clots
The potential reasons for abnormal period clotting are similar to those for heavy menstrual bleeding, since the two symptoms usually go hand in hand: Heavy flow usually equals more clotting and larger clots.
side bar, I dont think this is normal
Abnormal period clots can be a sign of:3
Uterine polyps or fibroids: Both benign uterine fibroids and polyps can lead to heavy menstrual bleeding and clotting.
PCOS or other hormone imbalances:Polycystic Ovary Syndrome and other hormonal imbalances can delay your period for months as a result of anovulation . This long buildup can lead to unusually heavy periods and large period clots.
Endometriosis:Endometriosis is a disease characterized by an overgrowth of endometrial-like tissue outside of the uterus, i.e. elsewhere in the pelvis or on the outside of other reproductive organs. It can cause very heavy and painful periods with intense cramping and large clots.
Cancer: Rarely, period clots are a sign of cervical or uterine cancer. Getting regular pelvic exams and Pap smears is important for preventative screening, but talk to your doctor about any alarming changes in your period even if youve recently had a negative Pap.
Adenomyosis: Adenomyosis is a condition in which the uterine lining grows into the muscular wall of the uterus, often causing heavy periods and blood clots.
Common anticoagulant drugs include: apixaban , dabigatran , edoxaban , rivaroxaban , and warfarin .
Recommended Reading: Why Is My Period So Light This Month
Cervical Or Endometrial Cancer
Endometrial cancer occurs when abnormal cells in the endometrium grow into the uterus and/or other organs. While the cause of endometrial cancer is unknown, the most common age for diagnosis is the mid 60’s.
Treatment for endometrial cancer is usually a hysterectomy, possibly followed by chemotherapy and/or radiation treatments.
Early diagnosis is key to the effective treatment of cancer. In addition to regular Pap screening for cervical cancer, the American Cancer Society recommends that women at high risk of endometrial cancer have an annual endometrial biopsy.
Do You Have Heavy Menstrual Bleeding
Understanding whether or not you suffer from HMB requires the accurate recordingof your menstrual history. The intensity of bleeding varies from person toperson, so determining what is clinically heavy is tricky. Furthermore, while asingle period can be heavy, a real problem isnât likely to exist unless the HMBis present at least most of the time.
The medical definition of this is when HMB is present for the majority of periods within the previous six months. Entering your bleeding intensity diligently and correctly in your Clue app will make it easier to assess if bleeding qualifies as heavy.
Your healthcare provider may ask you how many pads/tampons youhave been using in one day. Also, blood clots are very important to note â theirsize, number and color. They contain blood, and it is important to measure andcount them to get an approximation of how much blood has been lost.
Distinguish between regular and maxi tampons or pads, as maxi can usually absorbtwice more than regular .
Check how soaked your tampon or pad is. Is it fully soaked with blood, or justhalf?
Count blood clots they contain blood too.
For a menstrual cup, check the volume capacity and measure how full the cup is.
If the number of soaked tampons or pads is **sixteen or more** for the entireduration of your period , thenyour flow is heavy.
If you note 80mL or more blood with your menstrual cup for one entire cycle,your flow is heavy.
Read Also: Is There A Waiting Period For Delta Dental
When Is It Time To Schedule A Visit With Your Practitioner
Youre the person who knows your body best, so consider going to a doctor if you detect any changes in your usual menstrual cycle. If you believe you are suffering from menorrhagia or hypomenorrhea, your doctor will be the best person to diagnose and treat the underlying cause.
Depending on your symptoms, your doctor will perform a physical examination. They can also order imaging tests or blood tests to determine what is causing your abnormal menstrual bleeding. Once you have a diagnosis, they will also be able to prescribe treatment and other lifestyle changes to help you get better.
Many causes of abnormal menstrual bleeding are treated through the use of hormonal contraceptives. If youre suffering from anemia, your doctor could also prescribe supplements and dietary changes. A doctor or nutritionist will be able to advise you on what to eat after blood loss. These dietary changes could include eating more protein, citrus fruits, and leafy greens to improve your hemoglobin levels.
There are many things that can cause abnormal menstrual bleeding. Whether your period is too light, too heavy, short, long, or irregular, it can cause distress and other physical symptoms.
The easiest way to start dealing with any menstrual issues is by tracking your cycle. That way, youll have plenty of information for your doctor, and youll learn more about the way your body works.
Millennium Pregnancy And Gynecology
What causes heavy periods? That depends on your body and individual situation. There might be nothing wrong with you at all. Things that cause heavy periods include:
- One of your ovaries not releasing an egg during one or more months
- Growths in the uterus called fibroids
- A bleeding disorder that prevents your blood from clotting normally
- Side effects of some medicines, such as some types of birth control or blood thinners
- A problem with your thyroid
How much bleeding is normal when I have my period? During a normal period, bleeding lasts between 3 and 7 days. Most women lose between 2 and 3 tablespoons of blood during that time. Losing more than 5 tablespoons of blood during a period can be a sign of a problem. Blood loss is hard to measure with a spoon. But you can look for other signs that your periods are too heavy, such as:
- Having to change a pad or tampon every 1 or 2 hours
- Passing large lumps of blood, called clots
Is my bleeding an emergency? See your doctor or go to the emergency room right away if you soak through 4 or more pads or tampons in 2 hours. Any bleeding is an emergency if you are pregnant.
Should I see a doctor or nurse? Call your doctor or nurse if you:
Are there tests I should have? Your doctor or nurse will decide which tests you should have based on your age, symptoms, and individual situation. There are lots of tests, but you may not need any.
Here are the most common tests doctors use to find the cause of heavy periods:
Recommended Reading: Will The Pill Stop My Period
What Is The Typical Period Volume For People On Hormonal Birth Control
Hormonal birth control options like the pill, vaginal ring, or patch control the release and regulation of hormones like estrogen and progesterone within your body. When used correctly, the hormones in HBC prevent your ovaries from preparing and releasing eggs .
Your period will change depending on the type of HBC you use. Bleeding typically happens during your âno hormoneâ days . The bleeding you experience while using hormonal birth control is called withdrawal bleeding, and is not considered a menstrual period. Withdrawal bleeding is caused by the decline in reproductive hormones in your body during days when you get low or no hormones from your pill, patch, or ring .
Many people experience lighter bleeding and some donât bleed at all while using hormonal birth control . When affected by hormonal birth control, the lining of your uterus doesn’t thicken as much as it does without hormonal birth control. This typically results in lighter, shorter, or occasionally absent âperiods,â especially for people who have been using hormonal birth control for many months or years.
Women Just Before Period Stops Menopause
You already know women do not have period throughout their lifetime. At menopause, it stops.
Your ovulation and menstruation are controlled by hormones released from your hypothalamus, pituitary, ovaries, and follicles.
Before period finally ceases, women may have strange symptoms that include hot flashes, dryness of the vagina, irregular menstrual cycle and less than normal period bleeding.
These symptoms usually appear after 40 years but could occur earlier in women with premature ovarian failure.
If you start having scanty periods after 40 years, it may be first signs you are close to menopause.
Don’t Miss: How Does Birth Control Affect Your Period
Bleeding In Between Periods
Your period should have some regularity to it. The average menstrual cycle is 25 to 35 days. On a side note, if you have periods that are much further apart than every month, there may be a hormonal cause such as Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome that is causing infrequent periods. If you start to experience your monthly period showing up much more often than once a month, check in with your doctor. While heavier bleeding during perimenopause can be normal, so too can periods that come more often. But it is always better to ask your doc.
Read Also: What Age Does A Woman Stop Having Her Period
Symptoms Of Significant Heavy Bleeding
The official definition of menorrhagia is based on the amount of bleeding and how long it lasts.
During an average period, 2 to 3 tablespoons of blood is lost over 4 or 5 days. Its considered heavy bleeding if you lose more than this amount of blood during your period and/or if you bleed for at least 7 days.
If you have any of the following signs or symptoms, its worth talking with a doctor:
- You pass clots the size of a quarter or larger.
- You get up during the night to change your pad or tampon.
- During the day, you have to change your pad or tampon at least every hour for several hours in a row.
- You use a reusable menstrual cup and bleed 5 milliliters or more an hour for several hours in a row.
- You bleed so much that having your period keeps you stuck at home.
- You have significant abdominal pain and cramping that interferes with your regular routine.
- You dont meet those above criteria, but the bleeding is affecting your well-being.
There are several possible causes of heavy menstrual bleeding. Your doctor will ask more about your symptoms and medical history. Bloodwork or medical imaging may be done to further investigate.
Here are some reasons why your bleeding may be so heavy.
Heavy menstrual bleeding can have major effects on your health and well-being. Its important to pay attention to your body and seek help if you need it.
Don’t Miss: Do You Still Have A Period With Iud