Implantation bleeding is a very common and serious condition in women. If you are seriously trying to get pregnant, it seems that it takes much longer than two weeks between ovulation and a positive home pregnancy test (PMS). If you are like most women, you will spend those two weeks to have a definite awareness of every pain, part, and passion in your body and wonder if it is a pregnancy early sign.
Bleeding is one of the most common symptoms of pregnancy. Does it make sense if you have light spots? While it is hard to say, many women with a normal and healthy pregnancy experience have the so-called implantation bleeding while their fetuses are sitting next to the uterus. But do not fear and assume there is no pregnancy if you see a light spotting.
Here are all that you need to know about Implantation Bleeding.
What is implantation bleeding?
Implantation bleeding is a small spot or bleeding that occurs after immersing a newly fertilized egg into the endometrium. Because the lining of the uterus is rich in blood, some women notice spotting at this point a little. This is completely normal and not a problem, but a pregnancy test and medical examination should ensure that bleeding from the implant is actually the cause of the staining.
Therefore, Implant bleeding can be described as a mild bleeding or spotting that occurs 7 to 14 days after fertilization. When an egg is successfully fertilized by a sperm, after ovulation, the embryo begins to divide and grow and sends signals to a woman’s body to prepare for pregnancy. In turn, the walls of the uterus, called the endometrium, begin to change: they have already thickened during the menstrual cycle, but for nine months they need to grow even more and mature to maintain and nourish an embryo.
From Six to twelve days after fertilization, the rapidly growing embryo reached the uterus through fallopian tubes. It needs more nutrients and the endometrium is filled to support the embryo. At this point, the embryo joins the endometrium, where it first depends on the mother’s body for nutrients and oxygen. Implantation bleeding sometimes causes the burst of small blood vessels when the embryo enters the uterus.
When does implantation bleeding occur?
Implantation bleeding can occur when you think you are expecting your menstruation, usually around 6 to 12 days after conception when the fertilized egg adheres to the endometrium. When the embryo is implanted into the endometrium, it can break down small blood vessels in which it is buried. This does not cause any problems (the endometrium will heal!), However, some women experience slight bleeding from pink or red to brown.
Therefore, this can be confusing for affected women. “Some women will see a small amount of spotting or bleeding about 10-14 days after fertilization of the egg.” This so-called implantation bleeding and is likely to occur earlier than expected. Some women may misinterpret this to their normal period because it looks similar and is close to the expected time for the normal period.
How common is implantation bleeding?
There are no reliable statistics about women with implantation bleeding. Some do, some don’t. After all, there is no real way to detect if the spotting means pregnancy or not, only a test can show it. Though in the first trimester, bleeding is common, but that doesn’t mean it is normal. Also, if you don’t have implantation bleeding in your 1st trimester, that’s perfectly fine as this doesn’t affect the success of your pregnancy,” said Julie Lamppa, a CNR certified nurse at the Mayo Clinic.
Dr. Ross, a gynecologist at Providence Saint John’s Health Center, California explains implantation bleeding is common and occurs in about 25% of women in pregnancies, and it’s the early signs of pregnancy in most cases.
What Does Implantation Bleeding Look Like?
Implantation bleeding is usually dark brown or black in color, which means it is not new blood, and it can also be pink or red sometimes. It’s not a heavy flow either. You may notice slight spotting of some drops to slightly larger amounts. It may be difficult for women to distinguish between implantation bleeding and a regular period, because the symptoms may be similar enough to confuse.
Implantation bleeding may seem like an easier version of your menstruation. MacLeod says that the color is usually pink or a little red at first, but it can become brown when bleeding is resolving. The texture may vary, but shouldn’t be too thick. “It should not contain a clot.
Clots are usually formed with heavy bleeding. So if you really have implantation bleeding, you shouldn’t have a clot.
Implantation bleeding vs period: how to notice the difference
How do you know if there is bleeding from the implant or the menstrual cycle? Depending on how your menstruation happens, this can be a waiting game. Implantation is usually lighter than normal menstruation. “If you have bleeding that is considered heavy staining or bleeding, this is much more than just implant bleeding,” says Lamppa.
Still, if you have light periods, you might find that there isn’t that much of a difference, says Macleod. Although, the menstrual cycle is often longer than bleeding from implantation. If you’re bleeding for a day or two, it is more likely to be an implantation bleeding but if it goes beyond that, then you may have had menstruation.
Difference between implantation bleeding and period
Typical menstrual bleeding usually takes three to five days, starts heavier, and then subsides.
- Lasts from 3 – 7 days, with 2-3 days of bright red blood
- The bleeding starts heavily and clears out towards the end.
- Severe uterine cramps before bleeding and which can last for 2 to 3 days
- It usually doesn’t last more than 24 to 48 hours
- The bleeding is usually very mild, light and is usually brown, pink or black.
How do I know if it’s really implantation bleeding, and not the menstrual cycle?
Since implantation bleeding is a symptom that can often occur before a positive pregnancy test, it can be difficult to know if mild bleeding is an early sign of pregnancy or normal spots leading to the menstrual cycle. And unfortunately, there is no exact way to know. The best way to determine if you are pregnant is to wait for a few days and get a pregnancy test done. When you last had sex can also help you solve it – if it’s more than two weeks ago, implantation stains are unlikely to appear.
However, about one-third of women who claim to have implantation bleeding often define it differently from normal premenstrual stain; some claim that the blood is darker and not as red as normal menstruation blood. Others may have both mild cramps spotting simultaneously.
However, in many women, the two types of bleeding are the same. Therefore, if you assume that some spotting is implantation bleeding and your menstrual cycle occurs a few days later, or if you think implantation bleeding is normal and you find out you are pregnant at a later time, you are not alone!
Implantation Bleeding Symptoms
Women can experience bleeding in various ways. Some may not have additional symptoms other than mild bleeding, others may have signs of early pregnancy, which include:
- Mild cramps
- Breast tenderness
- Fatigue or total tiredness.
But still, don’t worry if you don’t have these other symptoms. “At this point, you may not have any pregnancy symptoms because it’s too early,” says Lamppa.
When should you worry?
Any bleeding in pregnancy is considered to be abnormal by doctors and they take it very seriously, so they always encourage pregnant women to report it immediately. Although all bleeding is not an emergency or complication symptom, your doctor will probably want to perform tests like vaginal ultrasound, to find the cause.
Dr. Burke-Galloway says bright red blood signifies active bleeding, especially if you are having blood clots and cramps. This may be a sign of miscarriage or ectopic pregnancy and requires immediate medical attention.
“Dr. Joshua Hurwitz, an Assistant gynecologist and reproductive endocrinologist of the Connecticut Reproductive Medicine, says. “In an emergency, you can go to the emergency room to be examined at any time, even if the bleeding is taking place in the middle of the night”.
Dr. Ross also adds that “Every pregnant woman has a 15 – 20% chance to have a miscarriage. When the bleeding is heavy like a normal period with blood clots and severe cramping, then it’s likely you may be experiencing a miscarriage. If heavy bleeding and cramping are associated with tiredness or dizziness, it’s important to contact your healthcare provider to have a pelvic ultrasound, blood count, and beta HCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) to make the correct diagnosis.”
When should I call the doctor?
Mild bleeding is usually normal during pregnancy, even sometimes other than implantation. Causes can be daily things, such as irritation of the cervix, sex or infection of the vagina after a pelvic examination. The bleeding can sometimes be a result of ectopic pregnancy, miscarriage or a molar pregnancy even after testing positive to a pregnancy test, you consult your doctor if you notice this so you can talk to him or her even about any other symptoms. Don’t worry too much, if the bleeding isn’t much, and doesn’t last longer than expected, all will be well.