Is it normal to have spots during pregnancy?
You may have low, moderate, and heavy blood flow during your menstrual cycle. However, spotting is very light bleeding that occurs outside of your regular period cycle. The bleeding is very light, hence the name 'spotting'. It looks like very few drops of blood on your underwear. Spotting is known as abnormal vaginal bleeding because it occurs outside of your period cycle. Spotting can be from either the uterus or the vagina or the cervix.
Some people often get confused with proper bleeding. Here are some key points to help you differentiate between bleeding and spotting!
- During menstruation (which is bleeding) you will notice a lot of bleeding. This is why we need sanitary products like pads or tampons to soak up the blood. When you're spotting, it's very light bleeding that doesn't require any products to soak up the blood. Wearing panty liner is enough.
- When you are bleeding, you will experience menstrual symptoms like cramps, lower back pain, breast tenderness, ovulation pain, etc. Usually, you do not experience all these symptoms during spotting.
- The color of the blood is sometimes lighter than the dark red color of the blood during menstruation. These are known as small pale red or pink dots. Sometimes brown spotting also occurs.
- If your period cycle is regular, one way to know that you are spotting and not bleeding is when you see blood dots on the days of the month when you don't have your period.
But you would like to know why spotting happens? It may seem unusual that you may have light bleeding outside of your period cycle, but it is actually quite normal! Spotting occurs during any new changes in the body. It can be a very good way for our body to adjust to lifestyle changes, medication changes, etc. Here are some reasons for spotting. Some are harmless, but some require you to see your gynecologist.
- Birth control pills: If you have recently started birth control or switched to a new type of birth control pill, you may have spotting before or after your period. This pill causes hormonal changes in the reproductive organs.
- Stress: Stress is one of the biggest culprits that can disrupt your entire period cycle. Stress can make you miss your periods or cause more periods depending on your body. Stress releases the hormone cortisol which lowers or slows down the production of progesterone, causing an imbalance in your cycle and giving you spots.
- Trauma: Any form of physical trauma to the vagina, such as rough sex or sexual assault, can cause mild bleeding.
- Diseases or infections: Many STDs (Sexually Transmitted Diseases) are a major reason for outside menstruation. Even UTIs (urinary tract infections) are known to cause spotting.
- Implantation bleeding: When your ovum or egg is fertilized by a sperm, it forms an embryo. This fetus is your potential baby. When the embryo gets stuck in the lining of the uterus and implants or attaches itself to it, some pale pink or brown spots may appear. However, not everyone experiences it. This is a clear sign of pregnancy.
What are brown spots?
Brown spotting is simply vaginal discharge that mixes with blood. It can also happen during, before, and after a period cycle. This is absolutely normal and almost all women experience brown discharge at some point during their menstrual cycle. This is usually some old blood from the last time it left your system because as the blood stays in your body longer and with age, it turns a brownish, reddish color. There are some causes of brown discharge that are more serious.
- Sign of pregnancy: Brown discharge is a clear sign of pregnancy if you experience other symptoms along with it. When the embryo is implanted or attached to the wall of the uterus, a brown discharge is observed. This bleeding can occur 1-2 weeks after the egg has been fertilized. You can always use a pregnancy test to check if you are having unprotected sex.
- Menopause: Age causes the brown discharge. If you're premenopausal—which is approaching menopause, you may notice a few brown spots here and there.
- reaction to sex
- Ovulation Spotting: Ovulation spotting is often pale pink or brown in color.
- Onset of menstruation: When your period cycle is just about to begin, you may get brown spots.
When is spotting a concern?
Vaginal spotting is a part and parcel of having menstruation, but it is important to know if it is something more serious than the usual causes. It's time to see your doctor or gynecologist when you notice the following:
- If you experience vaginal spotting at any time between your second and third trimesters. It's generally okay to spot during your first trimester because of all the new changes your reproductive organs are going through. But alert your doctor about it.
- If you experience pinkish-white spots along with a sudden decrease in pregnancy symptoms. This could potentially mean a miscarriage.
- 3If you experience a fishy or foul odor coming from your vagina along with a brown or green discharge. This could mean that you have contracted an STD or UTI.
- 4If you experience abdominal pain or an uncomfortable sensation when you pass urine during spotting.
If you experience any of the above, please consult your doctor immediately, they will do tests and PAP smears to rule out any harmful illness or miscarriage. Even if you do not experience any of these, but still notice a lot of spotting or brown discharge, it is always worth noting your doctor. keep | It's better to be safe than to regret later!