6 Causes for Bleeding Between Periods
Bleeding between periods is quite common, and while there are many reasons it can happen, usually it does not indicate any serious problem. Spotting, what ‘off-period’ bleeding is termed as, can get you all worked up, but understanding the various causes for the spots of blood on your knickers when you are not on your period can help you breathe in ease.
Spotting between periods has its causes in hormonal changes, menopause, puberty or an underlying health condition.
Spotting vs Bleeding Between Periods
Spotting is defined as light vaginal bleeding that takes place on days other than your regular periods. The small amounts of blood that you may notice on your underwear is spotting that usually only requires a panty liner for protection. But there are other types of bleeding as well. Lets understand them all.
Spotting: This is a reddish drop or two of blood on your underwear that typically does not require you to use a sanitary pad.
Light bleeding: This type of bleeding occurs just before or after your period. So technically it is not called spotting as it is considered part of your period.
Breakthrough bleeding: This happens outside your menstrual cycle and is heavier than spotting.
Causes for Spotting Between Periods
It is important to differentiate between spotting and bleeding, and to understand what type of spotting is normal for you. If you are bleeding enough to need a pad, then it is time to see your doctor, as it could indicate an underlying health condition. Other than that, here are a few common causes for spotting between periods.
1. Hormonal Imbalance
You may experience spotting if estrogen and progesterone, the hormones that regulate your cycle get out of balance. Change in hormonal levels could be a result of stress, or a recent change in diet or your routine. When spotting occurs at the beginning or at the end of a woman’s reproductive years, such as puberty or menopause, it may be attributed to hormones.
2. Hormonal Contraceptives
Bleeding between periods often happens when you start taking hormonal contraceptives, which causes your hormone levels to drop. Also known as breakthrough bleeding, it usually occurs about 2 weeks after your last period. Breakthrough bleeding should however stop after 1 or 2 months, with your periods regularising within 6 months.
Menopause usually happens between the ages of 45 and 55, marked by the time at which there has been no period for 1 year. Perimenopause is the time leading up to menopause. With unstable hormone levels during perimenopause, there may be chances of irregular periods, intermenstrual bleeding and heavy bleeding.
4. Medical Conditions
PCOS or Polycystic Ovary Syndrome is a condition where cysts are formed on the ovaries that disturbs ovulation causing irregular periods or no periods at all. PCOS is known to be a common cause of bleeding between periods and is not harmful. Treatment for PCOS can be designed with the help of a doctor. There are a couple of other conditions which can lead to Spotting. Uterine fibroids are noncancerous growths that form in the uterus. These are common in women who have given birth. Endometriosis or the growth of uterine tissue outside the uterus is another condition that may be a potential cause for bleeding between periods.
5. Just before your Period
Spotting or light bleeding prior to your period is totally normal. The uterine lining sheds off every month, and you get your period. Sometimes, the uterine wall does not break uniformly with some bits shedding before schedule. This is a very common cause for spotting before your period, in this case right before your period.
Ovulation is the time during mid-cycle when the ovaries release an egg. This usually happens 14 days after the first day of your last period if you have a 28-day cycle. The fluctuation in hormones can be a cause for spotting between periods. This blood looks like light pink or brown spots on your underwear, for which you could turn to Whisper panty liners.
Other reasons that may cause vaginal bleeding between periods include extreme stress, significant weight loss or gain, thyroid disorder and diabetes. If bleeding between periods is very heavy or lasts for longer than 3 months, it is advised to consult your doctor.
Now that you are aware of the various causes for spotting between periods, you can be heaving a sigh of relief. While Whisper sanitary pads are great for your menstrual period, always pack in a few Whisper panty liners that can save the day and give you that extra boost of confidence and freshness.