When you begin to bleed during your pregnancy, it can make you quite distraught. At this time, it is important for you to understand that bleeding during your pregnancy is not always a bad thing, and it is not always an indication of a miscarriage. Throughout the first trimester, it is actually quite common to experience some blood loss. When it comes to breakthrough bleeding, pregnant moms have some doubts and worries, let's learn more about it. 

Breakthrough Bleeding When Pregnant, Is It Serious?

Not really. Breakthrough bleeding is quite common for pregnant women, and often it is nothing to be worry.

During your pregnancy, you may experience breakthrough bleeding during the time that you would have your normal period. This may be at 4, 8, and 12 weeks; when you notice the breakthrough bleeding is highly dependent upon your cycle and when you became pregnant within your cycle. Most of the time, you will notice that the bleeding is accompanied by cramping, back aches, the feeling of being bloated, or any other symptoms that may normally accompany your period.

Although you feel like your period is on its way and you may see some bleeding, you will not actually have your period. When you are pregnant, your hormones begin to change and prevent your period from actually occurring; however, since they may not be high enough to prevent it completely, you may have what is known as breakthrough bleeding.

How Long Will Breakthrough Bleeding Last?

You may experience breakthrough bleeding during the first three months of your pregnancy; after the three months, your placenta will begin to produce hormones instead of ovaries. But keep in mind that some women will still see small amounts of bleeding throughout their entire pregnancy and have healthy babies. Simply make sure you let your doctor or midwife know if you are experiencing any bleeding so they can help keep an eye on you and your baby.

Other Possible Bleedings You May Have in Pregnancy

Besides breakthrough bleeding, pregnant women will also experience other types of bleeding throughout the pregnancy. These bleeding may or may not be a problem depending each individual's specific condition. Some bleedings may include:

1. Implantation Bleeding

1 in 3 women will often experience implantation bleeding, which is often considered as the first sign of pregnancy. This type of bleeding would occur as the fertilized egg attaches itself to the uterine wall. Most of the time, this is between 6-12 days after conception. Implantation bleeding is much lighter than that of a normal period and most commonly only produces spotting. However, it can be accompanied by mild cramps.

2. Bleeding After Sex

Many become frightened when they notice bleeding after sex. This is not something to fear, there is simply an increase in your blood supply and a softening of the cervix. Although it is not to be feared, you should still notify your doctor or midwife. The more they know about your pregnancy, the healthier you and your baby will remain. It is important to remain honest.

3. Bleeding from the Placenta

There are two times during your pregnancy when a woman may experience bleeding from the placenta: at 20 weeks and later in pregnancy. This type of bleeding is not to be taken lightly. Although more dangerous than the other types of bleeding discussed, placenta praevia, which occurs around the 20 week mark is only present in about 2% of women. If you are diagnosed with placenta praevia, your doctor will ask that you have additional ultrasound through the remainder of your pregnancy to watch your condition.

The second type of bleeding from the placenta that may occur is placental abruption. This is occurs when the placenta completely or partially separates from the uterus wall. Only 1 in 200 women will experience this. You will experience severe pain and a large amount of bleeding. Your doctor will require you be admitted to the hospital for strict supervision. Having high blood pressure and smoking may put you at a higher risk.

Should I Worry?

When it comes to breakthrough bleeding, pregnant women are easy to worry. However, small amount of bleeding or spotting is normal throughout your pregnancy. Most women will only notice spotting during the first trimester, while some will experience it through their entire pregnancy.

Bleeding and spotting at the beginning of pregnancy can actually be a good indication that your embryo is attaching itself to the wall of the uterus. It may also simply be a response to hormonal changes or changes in your cervix.

  • No matter the amount of bleeding or pain, it is always safest to contact your medical professional. They will be able to work with you to create the best plan of action that will keep you and your baby healthy.
  • Be wary of any sexually transmitted diseases during the early stages of pregnancy as these may also cause some bleeding.
  • If you have heavy bleeding accompanied by back aches or cramps, it is important that you immediately contact your doctor. Heavy bleeding or clotting accompanied by other symptoms may be signs that you have a more severe condition that needs medical attention.