An irregular period is not a comforting experience for any woman. But when your menstrual cycle has become unpredictable after a miscarriage, it can be quite concerning. Women can experience a heavier flow, some spotting, or nothing at all.
Most women begin ovulating again within a month or two after a miscarriage. But, if your periods are still unpredictable, it does not necessarily mean you won’t be able to conceive again. In fact, various other common reasons could be behind the irregular periods after a miscarriage. This is everything to know about irregular periods after a miscarriage.
1. It’s Normal To Skip A Period After Miscarriage
Some women may not have periods even after a month since their miscarriage. Generally, this is not a cause for concern. After a miscarriage, your body goes into a healing mode. It may take some time for the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) to be cleared from your body as your body returns to normal.1
Once your hCG levels are nil, your first period begins approximately four weeks later. Right after a miscarriage, you should continue bleeding for about a week and then the bleeding may totally stop or you may notice spotting for another week.
After the bleeding and spotting stops, your hCG levels should return to zero. After a miscarriage, some women may not have their first period until seven weeks later. All this happens because your body is trying to return to its normal hormone levels.
2. Second Round Of Bleeding Is Also Normal
Although quite rare, bleeding may stop in some women soon after a miscarriage and then heavy bleeding may occur one to two weeks later. Many women often mistake this for a second period after miscarriage, but this is unlikely unless it occurs after at least 20 days.
Although uncommon, the second round of bleeding is normal, which occurs when your body is trying to expel a portion of the placenta that remained in the uterus during the initial miscarriage. This kind of bleeding generally last just for a few days, and normal spotting should resume soon.
3. It’s Also Common To Have Irregular Periods If You Had It Before Pregnancy
If your cycle was irregular even before you became pregnant, the chances are that it may continue to stay that way even after a miscarriage. But, if your periods were always on time before the pregnancy and has become irregular after a miscarriage, you must consult your obstetrician-gynecologist. They may prescribe a hormone called progesterone to cleanse your uterine lining or may suggest that you take birth-control pills to regulate your cycle.2
4. It Might Happen As A Result Of Weight Fluctuations
Extremes in weight such as being obese or underweight have been associated with irregular periods. The factors that affect your menstrual cycle before getting pregnant can come back into play after a miscarriage.
It’s a normal process where your body returns to how it was before the miscarriage. Many studies have provided substantial evidence that obesity plays a significant role in the development of female-specific reproductive health issues.
Obesity particularly impacts women of reproductive age, as it is associated with an increased risk of infertility and pregnancy complications such as miscarriage.3 Some studies also indicate that both obesity and underweight are associated with an increased risk of spontaneous abortion (SAB).4
5. An Abnormally Heavy Period After Miscarriage Is Not Normal
If you always had a heavy bleeding even before the pregnancy and you experience heavy bleeding 20 days after your miscarriage, then it’s quite normal.5 But, if you experience heavy bleeding for over two weeks after a miscarriage, you must consult your doctor immediately as there could be three major causes for concern.
- The continuous loss of blood can cause you to become ill.
- Your hCG levels may reach 500 or higher, which means that you are experiencing a molar pregnancy (a condition that causes your body to produce higher-than-normal hCG levels and bleeding for several months).
- A piece of the tissue lodged in your reproductive system could also result in an unusually heavy bleeding.
6. Irregular Periods After Miscarriage Could Indicate A Hormonal Imbalance
Although it usually takes some time for your period to return to normal after a miscarriage, you must consult your doctor if you’re experiencing irregular periods. An irregular cycle often indicates a hormonal imbalance. It’s possible that your body is taking longer to recover after the miscarriage or it could be because of an underlying medical problem.
Some women also experiencing spotting on and off during the first month after a miscarriage. If this happens and your hCG levels are still high, it could mean that some tissue may still be remaining in the uterus that is yet to be expelled.
If your body is unable to eliminate the tissue on its own, your doctor may prescribe medications that enable this process to occur, which helps in restoring normalcy of your cycle.
7. It Could Also Happen If You Have A Clot Or Residual Tissue In The Uterus
A miscarriage that occurs within the first few weeks of pregnancy feels and appears a lot like a regular period. A miscarriage that happens in the sixth or seventh week of pregnancy generally resembles a heavy period. But, if you’re into your 10th or 11th week of pregnancy, then your uterus must flush out more tissue and possibly some placenta, which may take some time.
Persistent spotting may last for weeks and reduce gradually over time. But, if it doesn’t, you must consult your obstetrician-gynecologist. If you experience heavy bleeding for a couple of days, which stops for another two days only to resume for the next few days, there could be an issue in the uterus. Get an ultrasound done to find out if there is a clot or tissue in the uterus.
|↑1||Butts, Samantha F., Wensheng Guo, Mark S. Cary, Karine Chung, Peter Takacs, Mary D. Sammel, and Kurt T. Barnhart. “Predicting the decline in human chorionic gonadotropin in a resolving pregnancy of unknown location.” Obstetrics and gynecology 122, no. 2 0 1 (2013): 337.|
|↑2||What are the treatment options for heavy periods? U.S. National Library of Medicine. 2017.|
|↑3||Cardozo, Eden R., Tanaka J. Dune, Lisa M. Neff, Maureen E. Brocks, Geraldine E. Ekpo, Randall B. Barnes, and Erica E. Marsh. “Knowledge of obesity and its impact on reproductive health outcomes among urban women.” Journal of community health 38, no. 2 (2013): 261-267.|
|↑4||Hahn, Kristen A., Elizabeth E. Hatch, Kenneth J. Rothman, Ellen M. Mikkelsen, Susan B. Brogly, Henrik T. Sørensen, Anders H. Riis, and Lauren A. Wise. “Body size and risk of spontaneous abortion among danish pregnancy planners.” Paediatric and perinatal epidemiology 28, no. 5 (2014): 412-423.|
|↑5||Hasan, Reem, Donna D. Baird, Amy H. Herring, Andrew F. Olshan, Michele L. Jonsson Funk, and Katherine E. Hartmann. “Association between first-trimester vaginal bleeding and miscarriage.” Obstetrics and gynecology 114, no. 4 (2009): 860.|