Period blood does not stay the same shade, or even the same color for the entire duration of a single period cycle; what you observe on the first day might not look like what soils your pads on the 3rd, or even last day of your menstrual cycle. Here’s a list of all the guises your period blood may adopt during the course of a single period:
Table of Contents
1- Bright Red:
This means that the uterine lining, which is responsible for the entire period mess, is shedding normally, your body is functioning as it should and your period is just beginning. While some see loud red smears or patches on their first day, others might observe this color on their 2nd or 3rd day-when blood flow is at its heaviest-or even throughout the cycle. This is a sign of healthy flow and is no cause for concern.
2- Reddish Brown:
Just as fruits oxidize (turn brown) when cut and left outside, period blood that takes longer to leave the uterus is exposed to oxidation, hence taking on this particular hue. This color usually signals the end of a cycle, or may appear on the 1st day-a leftover from your previous period.
3- Brown or Rusty:
High body temperatures above 97.8 Celsius in the early part of your cycle might make the blood look burnt or scorched. It also disrupts the timing of ovulation (the monthly release of a fertile egg by the ovaries), hence, negatively affecting fertility. Brown droplets between periods for more than 2-3 months might be a side-effect of birth control or indicate puberty-related hormone fluctuations, Poly-cystic Ovarian Syndrome, menopause or pre-menopause.
4- Millennial Pink:
The appearance of this 2017 ‘it’ color on your pad usually accompanies very light bleeding, and is a sign of low estrogen levels. It can result from being underweight, heavy exercise (which is why female athletes often skip a period), anemia, using birth control or pre-menopause-when the ovaries reduce estrogen production 4-5 years prior to menopause. While not an immediate concern, regularly low levels of estrogen can cause mood swings, heart problems, osteoporosis, vulvar dryness, and even, difficulty conceiving. This can also happen to people who have just lost a lot of weight or those who exercise too much. It can be solved via some lifestyle changes and is largely not healthy.
5- Light Pink Watery:
Pink-tinted watery blood that causes infrequent leaks can be due to a vaginal discharge. While normal during pregnancy, it might also indicate a Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI), cervical or, in rare instances (nearly 1-2% of all gynecological cancers), Fallopian tube cancer.
Although orange-tinted discharge during periods might be normal for some, when paired with a foul smell and excruciating (abdominal) pain, it could indicate a vaginal infection. You should immediately consult a Gynecologist in this situation.
An unusually heavy period with a gray colored discharge, accompanied by a foul, death-like smell indicates that you were pregnant and miscarried. A commonly reported sign, approximately 10-20% of pregnancies dissolve within the first 10 weeks in this manner. It is also possible that a vaginal infection is starting. If it is an infection such as vaginosis then this blood will be accompanied by a fever, pain, itching or foul odor.
Period blood with a blue tint means that body temperatures are lower than usual, which slows down blood flow and causes it to congeal (become semi-solid). It can also be due to high estrogen levels that cause the uterine lining to thicken. Either way, sighting this color may be followed by a heavy flow, clotting and severe pain. Having high estrogen is often not a serious problem and can be solved via some dietary or lifestyle changes.
Those with a history of endometriosis (growth of endometrial tissue outside the uterus) or who have previously suffered from fibroid’s (benign tumors in the wall of the uterus) will usually observe heavy, blackish clots-along with excessive pelvic pain. This is due to the excessive thickening of blood, which becomes highly immovable and takes much longer than usual to flow out of the body. Such women might have difficulty conceiving, with a higher risk of clotting in the placenta-making it difficult to deliver nutrition to the baby when they do conceive.
Use this article as a guide only because, in the end, you are your best judge. What is alarming for others might be normal for you. If you have any concerns regarding your periods, book an appointment with a top Gynecologist in Lahore, Karachi and Islamabad through oladoc.com. Or call our helpline at 042-3890-0939 for assistance to find the RIGHT Doctor for your menstrual queries.