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Periods After Pregnancy

Sep 29, 2022

Experts say that after your vaginal or C-section delivery, you may have bleeding for six to eight weeks, which we call lochia. However, it is not menstrual bleeding.

Initially, the lochia may be deep red, passing with a few blood clots that can be managed using only the menstrual or maternity pads, but not tampons because tampons may infect your vaginal area. You should take proper care of your vagina, especially six weeks after delivery. After some days, the discharge may become watery and turn pinkish or brownish; later, it may become a whitish or yellowish discharge and stop on its own.

Typically, you may expect your periods again six to eight weeks after your delivery, depending on whether you are breastfeeding or not; it may vary accordingly. The women who do exclusive breastfeeding might not have their period earlier than those who did not.

Exclusive Breastfeeding

Exclusive breastfeeding means that you only feed your breast milk to your baby. Periods may not happen to mothers carrying exclusive breastfeeding until they stop feeding. But for women who do not do exclusive breastfeeding, either bottle-feed or a combination feeding may get their periods within five to eight weeks after giving birth. 

Why are breastfeeding mothers not having periods quickly?

Usually, breastfeeding women do not have periods soon because of the hormone secretion in their bodies. Prolactin hormone helps to produce breast milk that can suppress reproductive hormones. Therefore, no possibility of ovulating or releasing an egg for fertilization.

How does my period affect breast milk?

When you have your first period after delivery, you may also notice changes in your breast milk supply and your baby’s reaction. The hormonal changes influence your breast milk and period coordination. During your ovulation time and menstruation, your breast milk supply may get lower. Hence it is recommended to include calcium and magnesium in your regular food to maintain a good supply of breast milk

The hormone changes may also impact the composition and taste of your breast milk. 

Changes in the period after pregnancy

Once you experience your period after your childbirth delivery, you may find differences in your period than before. It may be heavier or irregular; you may sometimes have more cramps or even less. You may experience some of these changes:

  • Cramping intensity
  • blood clots
  • heavy flow
  • irregularity
  • pain variation

Some mothers may feel their periods get easier and painless after pregnancy. This may be because of the uterus size enlargement. In other cases, this may create a difficult condition due to the larger size of the uterus, and more tissue may be shed out each cycle.

Women who got endometriosis before pregnancy may have lesser periods after their delivery. Syndromes called Asherman and Sheehan affect the period flow as Asherman syndrome leads to uterus tissue scar, whereas Sheehan syndrome causes damage to your pituitary gland, which may result in heavy blood loss.


Related: How Do Menstruation Occurs

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