Menstrual blood may vary in color and consistency throughout each monthly period. This condition can be normal. However, changes in color, thickness, or clotting may also indicate a problem.

Many women experience heavy bleeding and clotting from time to time during their menstrual period. Often, during the heaviest days of bleeding, women have bright red or dark red clots in their menstrual blood. These clots make your menstrual flow denser or thicker than usual.

If you are noticing a significant increase in the amount of blood that you lose during your menstrual cycle, or you notice that your menstrual blood is getting thicker and denser each time, these can be signs of a serious problem.

When Do I Need to Worry About Heavy Bleeding and Clotting?

How Much Is Heavy Bleeding?

The amount of blood lost by every woman during a menstrual period varies. Hence, it is quite difficult to tell exactly what is heavy bleeding.

Women may loss an average of 30-40 ml of blood during their menstrual period. Women who lose about 60 to 80 ml or more amount of blood in each cycle might already be experiencing heavy bleeding.

Actually, it is no longer necessary to measure the amount of blood loss during your menstrual cycle to know if you are having heavy menstrual bleeding. Women usually have their idea of how much amount of blood they usually lose during their period. Hence, they cantell right away if the amount of bleeding increases or decreases.

Signs That Your Heavy Bleeding and Clotting Is Too Much

If your period lasts for more than seven days, and for several days in a row, your menstrual flow soaks through more than one pad every hour, then you might have a condition called Menorrhagia. This heavy bleeding makes you need to double up on pads or change your pads or tampons during the night.

Another sign of having Menorrhagia is when you have heavy period with blood clots that are in a size of a quarter or even larger. Menorrhagia will likely to cause constant pain in the lower part of your stomach during your menstrual period. This will make you feel tired, weak and lack of energy and can even hinder you to do things that you usually would still be doing during your period.

Menorrhagia is not a condition that can be taken for granted. Prolonged and untreated heavy bleeding and clotting can cause health problems like Anemia. This blood problem can leave you feeling weak or tired all the time thus stopping you from living your life to the fullest. Hence, if you have been feeling the signs mentioned, you should see a doctor. It is advised that you talk to your doctor openly about the signs you feel in order for your doctor to help you accordingly.

Possible Causes of Heavy Bleeding and Clotting

In some cases, the causes of heavy bleeding during a woman’s menstrual period cannot be exactly identified. However, there are some conditions that are noted to cause Menorrhagia. The following are some of the conditions:

1.      Hormonal Imbalance

In order to have a normal menstrual cycle, a woman’s body needs a balance between levels of estrogenand progesterone. These are two hormones that are responsible for regulating the build-up of the endometrium (lining of the uterus) which is shed during menstruation. If the levels of these two hormones are imbalanced, the endometrium develops excessively. This then results to heavy bleeding during menstrual period.

2.      Ovary Dysfunction

In some cases, a woman’s ovaries are not able to ovulate or release eggs during a menstrual cycle. This stops her body from producing progesterone. This then cause hormonal imbalance that will eventually lead to menorrhagia.

3.      Uterine Fibroids

During your childbearing years, types of noncancerous tumors may appear in your uterus. These uterine fibroids may then result to prolonged and heavy menstrual flow.

4.      Uterine Polyps

During women’s reproductive age, there might be small and benign growths on the linings of the uterus. These are called the uterine polyps. These uterine polyps are also noted to cause prolonged and heavy menstrual bleeding.

5.      Beeding Disorders

Cases of Menorrhagia are also found to be caused by in inherited bleeding disorders like von Willebrand’s disease which is a condition wherein there is a deficiency of an important blood clotting factor. This condition can also lead to heavy bleeding and clotting.

6.      Effects of Certain Medications

If you have been taking medications like anticoagulants, and anti-inflammatory, these can contribute to the occurrence of the signs of Menorrhagia.

7.      Intrauterine Device (IUD)

If a woman has been using non-hormonal intrauterine device for birth control, she is very likely to have Menorrhagia. Menorrhagia has been noted be a side-effect of using this device. Hence, if you are using this IUD and is experiencing the signs of Menorrhagia, it is strongly advised that you remove this device.

8.      Pregnancy complications

Some cases of pregnancy complications like miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy are also known causes of Menorrhagia.

9.      Cancer

In rare cases, uterine cancer, cervical cancer, and ovarian cancer can also cause menstrual bleeding disorder like menstrual bleeding for 4 weeks.

10.    Adenomyosis

In some cases, middle-aged woman who has had children may have Adenomyosis. This is a condition wherein the glands from the endometrium are embedded in the uterine muscles. This condition causes painful menses and heavy menstrual bleeding among middle-aged women.

11.    Other Medical Conditions

Menorrhagia can also be caused by other medical conditions like thyroid problems, liver and kidney diseases, endometriosis, PCOS and pelvic inflammatory disease.

What to Do by Yourself About Heavy Bleeding and Clotting

Keep a Menstrual Diary

If you are having treatment of just planning on having one, a diary can be helpful. In your diary, you can record the number of pads you need each day for several menstrual periods before and after any treatment. You can also record if any flooding or interruption of your daily activities occurs during your period. Although your doctor will give you a chart, a diary can be helpful for you and your doctor.

Take Iron

If you were having heavy menstrual flow, you need to increase your iron intake to replenish what is lost from your bleeding. You can do this by taking an over-the-counter iron tablet or by increasing your iron intake from foods like egg yolks, red meat, liver and green vegetables and dried fruits which are good sources of iron.

What Others Have Experienced

I was 14 years old when I got diagnosed with a PCOS. At that time I had been bleeding for 15 and half weeks! Since I was so young then, I thought that my condition is just normal so I just kept that condition to myself. It wasn’t until that one time that I covered my bed with my own blood and even collapsed on the bathroom floor that anyone knew what was happening to me.”


“It was in March last year when my problem started. I was bleeding very heavily for 4 months with just a day or two off. There were blood clots every day and some were as large as a tennis ball. There was one awful time when I was shopping that I flooded blood everywhere. That made me very embarrassed and decided to see a doctor. Tests were made and it was found out that I had a dermoid cyst which is about 4 cm. The doctor told me that they would have to remove my ovary. I did not agree since I am desperate to have children of my own. So for 6 months, they continue observing my condition. I went back last year and fortunately, the dermoid cyst had gone, everything is okay and I can get back to my life.”