Question: What causes light or heavy spotting after ovulation? Is it normal or due to pregnancy?
Whether you are spotting just after the end of your period or anytime within your menstrual cycle, it’s normal that you will be concerned something’s wrong.
Menstrual period in most girls will last for about five days, and then, your body starts preparing for ovulation.
Ovulation is the rupture of the most mature follicle, either on the right or left ovary, with the subsequent discharge of an egg into the fallopian tube.
Before ovulation occurs, there is a surge in hormones that control the development of about 20 follicles. The hormone, follicle stimulating hormone, causes your follicles to grow and mature till about a week or two after the end of your period when only one follicle (called the dominant follicle) ruptures and releases an egg.
Just before ovulation will take place, there is a rise in both estrogen and luteinizing hormones. It is believed hormone changes that occur around the time of ovulation cause spotting. Also, during ovulation, bleeding may result from rupture of an ovarian follicle.
Generally, bleeding from an ovarian follicle is normal, and it’s only a small amount of blood that mixes with your vaginal discharge and often goes unnoticed.
Some women will notice their vaginal discharge now changes to a pink or brown color, and in some women, they may see a black discharge after ovulation.
These change to your discharge is because fresh red blood (at the time of ovulation) turns brownish or dark as it moves through your womb, cervix, and towards your vagina.
Here’s an email I received for Benny IT
Thanks for the response to my previous email, but I still need help
I noticed signs of ovulation three days ago and surprisingly, I am spotting 2 days after ovulation.
Is mild bleeding normal after ovulation, or is this a sign I am pregnant?
Just like Benny, spotting a day after ovulation can cause women to panic, but you shouldn’t.
Here are signs of ovulation that are common
Apart from vaginal bleeding, other signs can tell if you are ovulating. They are:
Your vaginal discharge can be watery, thick, creamy, jelly-like or sticky. It all depends on the effect of hormones.
After your period ends, and before ovulation begins, vaginal discharge is creamy and thick.
Around ovulation, there is a surge in estrogen hormone that increases your libido, and also, causes your vaginal discharge to be clear and watery.
If you notice spotting around this time, likely you’ve ovulated.
2. Pain in your lower abdomen
There are many reason women experience mid cycle pain; Ovulation is the commonest.
During ovulation stretching and rupture of the ovarian follicle causes pain in the left or right abdomen. Usually, this pain stops in few days.
Other signs of ovulation are feeling wet with more urge for sex, pain in both breasts, feeling bloated, and elevated basal body temperature.
Other causes of spotting after ovulation before period
While it’s likely spotting 3 days after ovulation is because of ovulation bleeding, if you are spotting 10 days after ovulation, or throughout your menstrual cycle, it could be due to pregnancy or a health problem.
Here are other reasons you are spotting after ovulation
While a majority of women that get pregnant will not experience spotting as a sign, about 33 percent of women will notice implantation bleeding after ovulation has occurred.
After the release of an egg into the fallopian tube, the egg usually waits for about three days before it dies. During this time, if you have sexual intercourse, sperm moves quickly to your fallopian tube and fertilizes your egg.
After an egg is fertilized, it forms your baby (known medically as the embryo). The embryo starts to divide and finally moves into the uterus where it digs and burrows into the endometrial lining that coats the inner wall of the uterus.
As the embryo attaches itself, slight bleeding will happen, which will later be seen at your vagina as a black, brown, yellow, or bright red vaginal discharge.
In some women, spotting will hardly be noticed, and rarely, may be heavy like a period.
The truth is, pregnancy spotting after ovulation occurs few days before your next menstrual period, and you may only see a brown discharge after ovulation.
Other signs to show you are pregnant are
It’s important you know when you are spotting after ovulation. If your light spotting is right after ovulation, it’s not because of implantation bleeding. Implantation bleeding occurs right before your period and its light, dark, not like period bleeding.
Another easy sign of pregnancy is pain on the sides or center of your breast when touched. You will now be aware of you breast more often than normal because they are now heavier.
These breast changes occur because pregnancy hormones cause your ducts to increase and more sensitive to pain.
Nausea and vomiting
It’s also common that you will feel like throwing up in early pregnancy. If you do, after light vaginal bleeding, it’s likely you are pregnant
A missed period can occur for many reasons, and if you are pregnant, your period will not come when due. This is because pregnancy hormones, estrogen, and progesterone, will cause your period to absent throughout pregnancy.
Can I take a pregnancy test?
Women that are expecting a baby need an early hint if they are pregnant. Apart from pregnancy symptoms (breast pain, missed period, vomiting, mood changes), a pregnancy test is crucial to identify if you are pregnant or not.
But you should also be aware of the setbacks associated with an early pregnancy test. If you get a negative pregnancy test right after implantation spotting, it still does not mean you may not be pregnant.
It takes some days after your period for some pregnancy strips to be able to identify pregnancy, so be patient and re-test again.
It’s better to observe for pregnancy symptoms and watch if your period does not show up. If you’ve missed your period, take a pregnancy test.
2. Uterine fibroid
If you are spotting all the time, it could be due to a submucous uterine fibroid or fibroid polyp.
Fibroids are growth in the uterus that is common in young women, especially those more than 30 years. As you grow older, your body naturally shrinks a fibroid due to low levels of estrogen.
The truth is, most women that have fibroid will not even know, and most often, will not have any symptoms. If you do, you will experience spotting from time to time, with a heavy or light vaginal bleeding.
Other symptoms of uterine fibroid are
- Heavy menstrual bleeding
- Pressure in your lower abdomen and pelvic areas
- Lower abdominal pain
- Pressure signs (constipation, frequent urination) are due to effect of a large uterine fibroid
- Abdominal swelling
3. After taking emergency contraceptives
Occasionally, while you are trying to avoid pregnancy, you may have taken Postinor, Plan B, or early morning pills after an unprotected sexual activity.
These medications act by delaying your ovulation and also make your vaginal discharge unfavorable for sperm transport and survival.
In some women, spotting can occur after taking medication. It’s nothing serious and should stop in few days.
4. After taking birth control medications
If you already been on birth control pills for a months or weeks, spotting may occur if you changed to a new pill, suddenly stop taking medications, missed medication for days or if you are taking low dose estrogen pills.
Talk to your doctor if bleeding is heavy; otherwise, a light spotting after few months of starting birth control is not unusual.
5. Recent abortion
Bleeding after medical or surgical abortion is common. So, if you recently had your baby terminated through drugs or surgery (D & C), light vaginal bleeding is common.
6. Vaginal infections
Pelvic and vaginal infections are common causes of vaginal spotting and cramps. Symptoms of infections are
- Foul smelling vaginal discharge
- Itching vagina
- Lower abdominal pain
- painful urination
- Back pain
- Pain while having intercourse
What does spotting 4 days after ovulation mean?
If you’ve passed ovulation and experience light bleeding 4 days later, it’s likely ovulation bleeding.
Remember that pregnancy spotting occurs later in your menstrual cycle and just before your menstrual period. So don’t panic its pregnancy.
What does spotting 5 days after ovulation mean?
If you have to bleed 5 days after ovulation, it’s likely ovulation blood.
It takes some time for blood to move through your cervix to your vagina. This spotting is dark, brown, and nothing serious.
Spotting 6 days after ovulation, am I pregnant?
After ovulation, your fertilized ovum is moved slowly to your womb within 7 to 12 days, and then implantation occurs.
Spotting 7 days after ovulation may be because you’re pregnant. Don’t take a test very quickly. Wait till you’ve missed your period and take a pregnancy test.
Spotting 8 days after ovulation, can I take a pregnancy test?
Yes, you can. However, if it’s negative and you also feel exhausted, fatigued, breast pain, body weakness, it’s advisable to delay further test till after missing your period.