Women In Their 40s And Early 50s
In the years before menopause and when menopause begins, women have months when they dont ovulate. This can cause abnormal uterine bleeding, including heavy periods and lighter, irregular bleeding.
Thickening of the lining of the uterus is another cause of bleeding in women in their 40s and 50s. This thickening can be a warning of uterine cancer. If you have abnormal uterine bleeding and youre in this age group, you need to tell your doctor about it. It may be a normal part of getting older, but its important to make sure uterine cancer isnt the cause.
Why Am I Bleeding In The Middle Of My Cycle
Spotting mid-cycle can happen for many reasons and is experienced by most women at some point. The most common reason for spotting is due to hormonal birth control. If you have just started a form of hormonal birth control , spotting is very common in the first few months. If it doesnt taper off after 3 months, see your doctor. Taking your birth control pill at the same time every day can help prevent mid-cycle bleeding even a few hours difference can cause spotting, especially for the progesterone-only pill.
Other reasons you might be spotting include:
Some women experience mild spotting during ovulation. This is likely due to hormonal changes related to ovulation. Estrogen causes the endometrium to thicken, and peaks at ovulation. Progesterone rises at that time to maintain the endometrium. If insufficient progesterone is present at the time the estrogen begins to drop, spotting may result. This spotting usually lasts from 1-3 days and is mid-cycle and is not cause for concern.
If your egg was fertilized, it will usually implant in the endometrium about five to seven days later. This may result in light brown or pink spotting as some of the vessels are disturbed when the fertilized egg attaches to the endometrium.
Cancer or precancerous conditions
Abnormal Bleeding: Why Women Should Treat It Not Tough It Out
Women of any age can experience abnormal bleeding that is, bleeding that is heavy, lasts long periods of time, or occurs outside of regular menstrual cycles. When we say abnormal bleeding, the textbooks define it as blood loss from the uterus in excess of 2.8 ounces, or about a third of a cup over a few days. But who is actually measuring their blood loss? For practicality, abnormal bleeding is bleeding that interferes with regular activities.
Many women also deal with irregular periods that come so irregularly that they feel they are bleeding all the time or so infrequently that the bleed only once every 3-4 months. Though fewer periods may be desirable, it needs to be evaluated. Abnormal bleeding or spotting often happens:
- After menopause
- After sex
- Between periods
Abnormal bleeding is not normal, and you dont have to live with it.
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Should You See A Doctor
Although most people with menstrual cycles spot at some point in their lives, there are instances when you should see your healthcare provider about spotting. Ask yourself these questions, and if the answer is yes, make an appointment to see your gynecologist or other healthcare professional:
- Am I having vaginal bleeding when I don’t expect it? Although spotting can be normal, it’s important to have any unusual bleeding checked out by a physician.
- Have I been skipping periods or bleeding less than usual?
- Am I or could I be pregnant? Spotting can be normal early in pregnancy, but it should be checked.
- Am I having spotting or bleeding after menopause? Menopausal women should not have vaginal bleeding.
- Am I noticing spotting or bleeding after sex? It may be an infection, which needs medical treatment.
In general, anything out of the ordinary with your vaginal spotting or bleeding means it’s worth contacting your healthcare provider.
Living With Abnormal Uterine Bleeding
Abnormal uterine bleeding can impact your life in a negative way. Not being able to predict when bleeding will begin can cause you to be anxious all the time. Also, heavy menstrual bleeding may limit your daily activities during your period. For some women, it even prevents them from leaving the house.
If you have heavy menstrual bleeding, try taking ibuprofen during your period . Ibuprofen is a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug . NSAIDs can work to reduce the bleeding during your period.
You also should make sure that you are getting enough iron in your diet. Your doctor may prescribe an iron supplement to ensure that you dont become anemic.
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Your Period Often Takes You By Complete Surprise
An unexpected period is a classic annoying menstrual cycle problem. Pour one out for all the times you thought youd have a period-free vacation, only for it to show up right as you hit the beach. Fun! Irregular periods could be due to a number of different things that are in your control, like stress and travel, Dr. Streicher says. But they can also happen because of various health conditions.
Take thyroid issues, for example. Hypothyroidism, which is when your thyroid gland in your neck doesnt produce enough hormones, can lead to an irregular period, according to the Mayo Clinic. It can also cause myriad other symptoms, like heavier than usual periods, fatigue, constipation, dry skin, weight gain, impaired memory, and more. Treatment typically involves taking medication that mimics the thyroid hormone.
On the flip side, hyperthyroidism, which is when your thyroid gland is overactive, can cause light or infrequent menstruation, along with issues like sudden weight loss, rapid heart rate, increased appetite, and more frequent bowel movements, according to the Mayo Clinic.
PCOS and uterine polyps, which we discussed earlier, could be behind irregular bleeding, too.
When Do I Need Medical Attention For Spotting Between Periods
Most times, spotting between periods isnt a cause for an emergency visit. But since intermenstrual bleeding is never normal, you should talk to Dr. Morales about any spotting at your regular visit. If you have heavy or persistent bleeding or spotting between periods, its important to call for medical advice sooner.
Ready to talk to us about spotting between periods? Our compassionate team at Kelly Morales OB/GYB can help. Contact our San Antonio office by calling 210-570-7277 to schedule an appointment.
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How K Health Can Help
Spotting can be concerning when youre not sure whats causing it. Did you know you can get affordable primary care with the K Health app? Download K to check your symptoms, explore conditions and treatments, and if needed text with a doctor in minutes. K Healths AI-powered app is HIPAA compliant and based on 20 years of clinical data.
K Health articles are all written and reviewed by MDs, PhDs, NPs, or PharmDs and are for informational purposes only. This information does not constitute and should not be relied on for professional medical advice. Always talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of any treatment.
What Can Cause Bleeding Between Periods
There are several things that could cause bleeding between periods, such as changes to your hormones levels, use of hormonal contraception or contraceptive devices, an infection, or an injury.
Other causes of bleeding between periods may include:
- polyps in your uterus or cervix
- inflammation of your cervix
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Spotting But No Periodwhy
Many women go to their doctors and say, Im spotting but no period. Small amount of bleeding before a menstrual period is often harmless, but continuous spotting may indicate a health problem. Here are the possible causes to answer why there is spotting without period:
1. Common Causes
- Light spotting may occur when you ovulate or release an egg from your ovary.
- Spotting may occur during implantation , which occurs when a fertilized egg attaches to the inner wall of the uterus. In this case, ‘spotting but no period’ becomes an early sign of pregnancy.
- Physical or mental stress, poor diet, lifestyle changes, environmental factors, alcohol abuse, heavy smoking, certain medications, and drug abuse can cause hormonal imbalance. These factors cause a delay in your periods and spotting between the periods and answer the question why Im spotting but no period has occurred.
- For some women, spotting is a sign that their menstruation is imminent or about to begin within one to two days, or at most, after a week.
- One of the side effects of birth control pills is spotting and irregular cycles. Other birth control methods associated with spotting include intrauterine devices and patches.
- Certain medications like aspirin and ibuprofen, which could cause thinning of the blood.
2. Gynecological Problems
3. Pregnancy-Related Issues
4. Other Medical Causes
- Obesity, diabetes, and other hormonal imbalances
Its Not My Periodwhy Am I Bleeding
Contraceptives, STDs, the onset of menopausea variety of conditions can cause vaginal blood flow during any time of the menstrual cycle. An accurate diagnosis will point to the most suitable treatment for you.
Most often, vaginal bleeding between periods, or intermenstrual bleeding, is no cause for concern. The most common reasons are menopause and hormonal contraception . But these are not the only reasons for intermenstrual bleeding.
If you frequently experience intermenstrual bleeding, it is considered abnormal and should be checked.
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Conditions That Can Cause Sporadic Spotting Between Periods
September 9, 2019 7:54 amPublished by Midcity OBGYN
Noticing a few spots of blood between periods can be worrisome, and although women may see spots in their underwear or on toilet tissue, there are usually benign reasons for these occurrences. Here are seven conditions that can cause sporadic spotting between periods in addition to when you should be concerned enough to seek medical advice.
Know Your Menstrual Cycle
Your period is such a regular part of life during the reproductive years that it can be easy to not pay full attention. However, it’s helpful to know your cycle so that you know when something is off. Mark the first day or your period on a calendar and do that every month for six months to get an understanding of your cycle. Note its regularity, light days, heavy days, and any spotting. When something changes, you’ll be more aware of it and can contact a healthcare provider as advisable.
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Bleeding Doesnt Smell Like Period
I started bleeding again after 10 days of my last mentsural cycle, it started a spotting then light bleding now it is going on for 5 days, but it doesnt smell anything like my period and I do not have cramping, I usually have heavy cramping everytime I have my period, but the last two bleding have been without cramps, what do you guys think it could possibly be?
You might want to just contact your PCP if your bleeding again after 10 of your LMP. I would want to know what was causing the bleeding! They may have to start/change BC if your currently using one!
< blockquote> < b> Quoting Barnett Babies:< /b> You might want to just contact your PCP if your bleeding again after 10 of your LMP. I would want to know what was causing the bleeding! They may have to start/change BC if your currently using one!< /blockquote>
Not using any, never used any before also
This month I experienced bleeding before I ovulated. I had spotting on CD11, 12 and 13. It was red and mixed in with my cervical fluid. I didnt get any on my underwear, it was only when I wiped, sometimes it was a lot, sometimes it was only a little.
Ive never had it before and I had assumed that ovulation bleeding was right at ovulation or a little after and it was just a bit of brown blood. So I did some research and there isnt a lot out there. From what I understand, this is considered to be a very fertile time for the woman.
When To Seek Medical Help
You should consult your doctor any time you have abnormal vaginal bleeding. The cause of the bleeding could be serious and should be determined. See your doctor right away if youre pregnant and have vaginal bleeding.
If you have other serious symptoms in addition to bleeding, you may need emergency medical attention. These include:
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Can Abnormal Uterine Bleeding Be Prevented Or Avoided
If your abnormal uterine bleeding is caused by hormonal changes, you will not be able to prevent it. But if your hormonal changes are caused by being overweight, losing weight could help. Your weight affects your hormone production. Maintaining a healthy weight can help prevent abnormal uterine bleeding.
When To Seek Help About Spotting Before Your Period
In the majority of cases, spotting is not a sign of anything serious and is more of a nuisance than a medical emergency. However, you should certainly seek medical attention if you suspect that you may have an infection, sexually transmitted disease, or if you have been injured or sexually assaulted.
It is important for all women to keep track of their cycles so that a change in their pattern is easily noticed and can be checked out. If you generally see spotting two days before your period and suddenly experience spotting for two weeks before your period, that warrants a conversation with a doctor.
While this article has focused on women who are not pregnant, if you do experience spotting and there is a chance you may be pregnant, you should seek immediate medical care. Vaginal spotting is often normal during early pregnancy, but spotting during pregnancy can be a sign of an early miscarriage or an abnormal pregnancy such as an ectopic pregnancy.
If you experience any heavy bleeding, to the point that you soak through two pads or tampons in one hour for two hours in a row, call your healthcare provider or go to the emergency room. Bleeding this heavy can be serious or even life-threatening.
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Female Bleeding: When Should You See A Doctor
Thankfully, most of the time your period will come and go without causing much fuss. But what about those times when your cycle gets thrown out of whack and you have abnormal bleeding? Should you be concerned?
Every woman is different when it comes to her cycle. However, when period changes happen such as a heavier or lighter flow than usual or timing abnormalities it can be hard to decide if you need to call your doctor or if what youre experiencing is in the range of normal.
Its a good idea to always track your menstrual cycles, including how heavy your flows are, how long they last and how many tampons or pads you use during a single cycle. This information can be useful for your doctor.
We spoke to INTEGRIS Health OB-GYN Dr. Elise Schrop to get her insights on a scary topic. What causes abnormal bleeding, just what is abnormal anyway, and when should you consult your doctor?
“Abnormal bleeding is a very common problem for women,” Dr. Schrop says. “In fact, about a third of office visits to the gynecologist are for abnormal bleeding. It can happen to women of all ages but most commonly occurs in the first several years after a young woman starts having a period and as women start to make the transition to menopause.”