A missed period is one of the most telling signs of pregnancy, however, once confirmed, conceiving doesn’t mean you won’t still experience some bleeding. In fact, spotting is a common occurrence in as much as 20% of pregnant women during their first 12 weeks of pregnancy. While it certainly isn’t a heavy flow like a typical menstrual cycle would be, and the color is typically lighter in color, it does happen and can be something you wish to prepare for.
Obviously, seeing blood can be alarming, but so long as you are discussing with your primary care physician and monitoring such, you likely have nothing to worry about. It is very likely that your pregnancy will continue with a healthy baby and body!
Stevie, our in-house Director of Media Relations recently had her third child and wore her Apele performance undies all throughout her pregnancy. “I had very mild bleeding the first few weeks and the natural discharge that accompanies the latter months of pregnancy. I simply wore a larger size of Apele everyday undies the last two months and was able to monitor my body’s changing responses. It actually made reporting to my OBGYN really easy as well as I could monitor any fluids each time I used the bathroom – which was, obviously, often!”
What’s the difference between spotting and bleeding?
Vaginal bleeding during pregnancy is any discharge of blood from the vagina. It can happen anytime from conception (when the egg is fertilized) to the end of pregnancy. Spotting, however, is very light bleeding that is more than likely no more than a few drops of small streaks of blood. You may not even see it on your panties but instead only on the tissue in small segments when wiping.
Causes of Spotting
Spotting is worth sharing with your provider just to keep worry at bay. There are a few causes that they would want to rule out or treat for in the event the spotting is a symptom of certain conditions. Implantation bleeding, for example, happens when the fertilized egg attaches to the uterine lining. This can result in several days of light bleeding or spotting.
A cervical polyp (a harmless growth on the cervix), can be another common cause of spotting because of the higher estrogen levels. As a result, contact with this area can cause bleeding.
Naturally, as the blood vessels gather and more pressure and attention is focused on the area, spotting can occur also. This could be from contact via sexual intercourse, routine gynecological exams (think vaginal ultrasounds where the “wand” is used early on versus the external gel and tools), strain caused by heavy lifting and pulling of those pelvic muscles, etc.
How to Manage
Simply call your OB and keep them in the loop with your experiences and observations. Spotting or bleeding during pregnancy is not expected and may be abnormal, but it is not always a cause for concern. While this is not a major concern for first trimester, any spotting or bleeding after those first few weeks should certainly be reported right away. And any time the blood is heavier than a few drops or streaks, call your healthcare professional right away so they can confirm or rule out pregnancy complications, such as an ectopic pregnancy.
To help manage your spotting during pregnancy ensure you stay well-rested, elevate your feet often, keep hydrated, keep lifting light (not more than 10lbs.) and consider a pack of Apele everyday undies to help you monitor and manage the many bodily happenings during pregnancy and post-partum processes.