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Bleeding or Spotting Between Periods

Vaginal Bleeding

Vaginal bleeding that occurs between periods or after menopause can be caused by various problems. Such bleeding may be called "intermenstrual bleeding."

Any vaginal bleeding that occurs after a menstrual period ends and before the next period starts is considered spotting. In most cases, spotting before your period is no cause for concern. However, in some situations, it could signal a reproductive health problem or even a life-threatening disease. Make sure the bleeding is coming from the vagina and not from the rectum or from your urine. Using a tampon is one way to find out.

Causes that may be associated with bleeding or spotting between periods

Although the cause of irregular bleeding or spotting can vary according to individual health situations, some of the more common causes include:

  • Hormonal fluctuations
  • IUDs used for contraception
  • Stress
  • Bladder or vaginal infections
  • Ectopic pregnancy
  • Miscarriage
  • Uterine polyps
  • Endometriosis
  • Birth Control Pills
  • Certain medications, such as corticosteroids or antidepressants
  • Overuse of Aspirin
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Cervical cancer
  • Sexual intercourse

Spotting or bleeding prevention tips

Manage your stress levels Emotional stress can cause a woman's menstrual cycle to fluctuate which can cause spotting or irregular periods

Take birth control pills as prescribed Stopping and restarting your pill routine is a very common practice among young women. Try to schedule a time when you take your pill at the same time each day.

Pap Smears Getting an annual pap smear will help rule out the possibility of cervical cancer

Overuse of Aspirin Never take aspirin while you are menstruating unless it has been prescribed by your physician. Aspirin can cause bleeding to occur longer and heavier.

IUD's Change your form of birth control if possible. Every woman's body is different and using an IUD may not be the best form of contraceptive.

Vaginal or Bladder Infections If you suspect you have a vaginal or bladder infection consult with your physician immediately.

Medications Work with your pharmacist to ensure that your medications aren't working against your form of contraceptive.

Pregnancy Some women experience spotting during pregnancy. Always inform your GYN physician of this occurrence.

It is important to know your body and what is the normal pattern for you. Keeping a diary of your monthly routines that includes your mental and physical health will help your physician determine what may be causing most illnesses or ailments you may be experiencing.

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