Understanding The Relationship Between Pregnancy, Menstruation and Ovulation


I was having a conversation with a female friend who told me that a lady could be pregnant and still be seeing her period. It sounded absurd but she was very insistent. I let her win the first round because I didn’t have enough information to back my points up but I told her “I will do my research and come up with my findings”. During my research I had to ask a few female friends of their opinion before asking my best friend “Google”. My friends also affirmed that a woman could see her period while being pregnant but my research on Google had a different opinion. A health website called “New Health Guide” in an article titled “Can You Be Pregnant and Still Get Your Period?” had this to say about the above topic. I also discovered so many helpful articles for the female body that I decided to share them verbatim. Enjoy.

Can You Be Pregnant and Still Get Your Period?
The rumor that someone has had a period while they were pregnant is a common myth. Some women will experience vaginal bleeding during their pregnancy, and some even report that they appear to have bleeding that mimics a regular period. But this type of bleeding is not the same as menstruation. It is common for women to mistake vaginal bleeding for their period because this is the type of bleeding that occurs most often. What causes vaginal bleeding that resembles a period?
It is possible to get pregnant during your period, but it is not very likely. Once the body begins to produce human chorionic gondaotrophin (hCG) during pregnancy, you will no longer have periods. Around 25-30 percent of women who are pregnant experience bleeding or spotting early on in the pregnancy. There are a few causes that commonly lead to first-trimester bleeding, but none of these are signs that there is something wrong

1. Implantation Bleeding
This bleeding occurs when the fertilized egg attaches to the wall of the uterus. This commonly occurs 2-5 days after conception. This bleeding should be slight and only last for about 5-10 days after conception.

2. Hormonal Changes
This bleeding should be quite slight, but it may resemble your normal period. In some cases women will bleed throughout their pregnancy, but this is not their normal period. This is often caused by hormonal changes that occur when your body is getting used to the pregnancy.

3. Other Causes
You may experience bleeding after a vaginal exam, Pap smear or zed because there is an increase in the amount of blood going to the cervix when you are pregnant. Bleeding can also be a sign of troublesome symptoms such as ectopic pregnancy or miscarriage which could be life threatening.

If you notice bleeding that is not slight during your pregnancy, call your midwife or doctor right away, even if the bleeding stops. Many women who bleed during pregnancy do not have complications but it is always best to rule out a serious problem. If you are experiencing active bleeding or pain and cannot reach your regular doctor, go to the emergency room.

What if I Have Symptoms of Pregnancy Followed by a Heavy Period?
If you are having unusual symptoms that make you think you are pregnant, but are also experiencing heavy bleeding, you should talk to your doctor. These symptoms may be caused by a hormone imbalance, miscarriage or infection, but a medical examination is the only way to know for sure so you can receive the right care.

What if I Have a Negative Pregnancy Test and a Missed Period?
Negative pregnancy test can indicate that you are really not pregnant, but you may have taken the test incorrectly or too early. Pregnancy tests have varying sensitivity on when they can detect hCG hormones, so you may not have given your body time to produce enough hCG at a level that can be detected by your test. Pregnancy tests can also expire, rendering the results invalid. You should make sure you follow all of the instructions on the packaging to make sure you are likely to get an accurate result from your pregnancy tests. Some women can get accurate results from a pregnancy test the day their missed period occurs, while others will not get a result until 3-4 weeks later. You should take a pregnancy test after you have missed a period, but if it comes back negative you should take another a week later if your period has still not started.

Can I Get Pregnant Right before Period?
It is hard to get pregnant right before your period because ovulation takes place around 2 weeks before this point in your menstrual cycle. If a woman has an irregular cycle it is possible to ovulate closer to your period, making it possible for fertilization or implantation to take place. In some cases people are actually experiencing other types of bleeding that is mistaken for a period. So if you are bleeding when you are not due for your period it may actually be a symptom of pregnancy.

Can You Get Pregnant after Ovulation?
Ovulation is a part of the female menstrual cycle. You can get pregnant after ovulation if you have had sexual intercourse that resulted in conception. While it is possible to get pregnant “any time” during your cycle your chances are the highest at the point of ovulation. Understanding the probabilities surrounding different time periods where you could get pregnant can help you understand the likelihood of this occurring. It is only possible to get pregnant for a short time after ovulation. After the egg has been released from the follicle there is a 12-48 hour period where the egg is available for fertilization from male sperm. Sperm can live for up to 5 days in a woman’s body because they are sustained by cervical mucus. There are often sperm waiting in the fallopian tubes to fertilize an egg just after it was released during ovulation. Active and healthy sperm will take around 6 hours after ejaculation to swim from the cervix to the uterus and fallopian tube to meet an egg that is waiting to be fertilized. Therefore it is possible to become pregnant 1-2 days after ovulation.

Here are your odds of getting pregnant before and after ovulation.
Odds of conceiving:
5 days before ovulation- 0 percent
4 days before ovulation- 11 percent
3 days before ovulation- 15 percent
2 days before ovulation- 20 percent
1 day before ovulation- 26 percent
Day of ovulation- 15 percent
1 day after ovulation- 0.09 percent
2 days after ovulation- 0.05 percent
3 days after ovulation- 0 percent

Can You Ovulate Twice in Once Cycle?
There will only be one fertile period with every menstrual cycle when Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) hormones rise and the follicles in the ovaries release an egg. Ovulation is triggered by a specific blend of hormones that inform your body it is time to move through the menstrual cycle, and once this occurs there is only a 24 hour period when your hormones peak. After ovulation occurs the hormone levels decline and your body will go through a feedback cycle that causes menstruation.
It is possible for eggs to be released from two follicles in this period, which can result in fraternal twins. Between 1-3 percent of all births are fraternal twins. It is now believed that 1 in 8 pregnancies are caused by early fertilization of more than one egg but less than half of these second embryos survive for more than a few weeks following ovulation. If the embryo does not survive the body will reabsorb this tissue.

What Happens after Ovulation?
If You Are Pregnant:
If the egg is fertilized by sperm it will create a zygote which will take around 5 days to travel from the fallopian tube to the uterus. During this time the cells will divide to form a blastocyst. Around 8-10 days after fertilization this blastocyst will implant in the uterine wall.
Before the blastocyst implants there is very little change in the body. After implantation you may notice spotting or bleeding that some mistake for a period. The blastocyst will then begin to grow into an embryo which will cause hormones to release that will seal the cervix with a mucus plug and thicken the endometrium.

If You Are not Pregnant:
Within 48 hours the egg will move into the fallopian tubes and disintegrate where it will be reabsorbed. The corpus luteum will produce progesterone for 12-14 days which will eventually drop and cut off blood flowing to the uterine lining. As this tissue is deprived of oxygen it will get thick and seep into the vagina, causing your period.

After ovulation and before menstruation your body temperature will be around 0.5 degrees Celsius higher than normal. Your cervical mucus will also become less slippery and become more creamy or sticky in consistency.”


Reference: http://www.newhealthguide.org

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