WONDERING HOW BIRTH CONTROL CAN AFFECT YOUR PERIOD?
YOUR BODY, YOUR PERIOD
Getting your period, also called menstruation or menstrual bleeding, is completely natural. The lining of your womb thickens before every period and is shed every month when an egg is not implanted for pregnancy learn more here.
Everyone experiences their period differently; how often it happens, how long it lasts, how light or heavy it is, and whether it comes with discomfort can vary greatly from person to person. Anywhere from 3 to 8 days is considered a ‘normal’ period length. Knowing your period can help you understand when something isn’t quite right, or when you need to ask for your doctor’s advice.
CAN I GET PREGNANT ON MY PERIOD?
Yes. Although your chances are lower than at other times in your cycle, you can still get pregnant around or during your period. This depends on when you ovulate. Remember that sperm can live up to 7 days in your body – sometimes long after your period is over
CAN I HAVE SEX DURING MY PERIOD?
Short answer – yes! Sex during periods is frowned upon in some cultures, but it is totally fine as long as you’re comfortable. In fact, some women notice increased arousal and a stronger connection with their partner during period sex
DO I NEED A PERIOD TO CLEANSE MY BODY?
For some people, experiencing their period might be a way of flowing with their body’s natural rhythm. However, changing your period to experience easier – meaning shorter or lighter – cycles, or stopping them completely is also an option
IF I GET MY PERIOD, DOES IT MEAN I’M NOT PREGNANT?
You cannot have your period and be pregnant at the same time but be careful not to mistake spotting or other bleeding for a period. Early in pregnancy, you could experience period-like symptoms such as light cramps and spotting (light pink or dark brown color), or light and short vaginal bleeding. If vaginal bleeding is enough to fill a tampon or pad, this probably is a period. Take a pregnancy test if you are in doubt.
HOW MUCH BLOOD LOSS IS ‘NORMAL’?
This depends. What is normal for you could be abnormal for another. Generally, an average of 6–8 teaspoons (30–40 mL), up to 16 (80 mL), is considered ‘normal’ per period. Any amount greater than this that also affects your emotional and physical wellbeing could be a ‘heavy’ period. (here)
IS MY PERIOD, MY MENSTRUAL CYCLE?
Menstrual bleeding or menstruation is another word for period; it happens because of your menstrual cycle. The female hormones cycle monthly to prepare your body for a possible pregnancy. If this doesn’t happen, you lose an egg and shed your womb’s lining as you menstruate (learn more here)
CAN EXERCISE STOP MY PERIOD?
Only if done excessively, it’s possible. Too much exercise can affect the hormones that normally regulate your period. Losing too much fat because of intense exercise can also stop your ovulation. If you’re a professional athlete, you may find it useful to speak to a sports medicine doctor about this
DOES MY DIET AFFECT MY PERIOD?
It can. If you severely limit your energy intake, you could experience irregular cycles, or your periods could stop as your body needs the calories to produce your period hormones and for you to ovulate. Your diet also affects your weight which is linked to your cycle
DOES MY WEIGHT AFFECT MY PERIOD?
Extreme changes to your weight can affect your period. Sudden or severe weight loss can lead to irregular cycles or stop your period. Obesity can also influence your estrogen levels, a hormone of your reproductive system, which can in turn change your period pattern
HAVE MORE QUESTIONS?
Make an appointment with your doctor or nurse today.
Is It Okay?
Everyone experiences their period differently. It’s ok to do what makes you feel comfortable with it.
This may be a taboo for some, but periods are natural and nothing to be ashamed of. It’s important that you learn yours, so you can spot when something doesn’t feel right.