Implantation Bleeding – What Is It and Am I Pregnant?

So, you’ve tracked your cycle, and you make sure to “set the mood” for your husband and have made sure to have sex with your husband during your ovulation period, and it looks like you may have succeeded. Then you track your cycle, and you are BLEEDING near the time when your period would come (around a week after your ovulation happens)! So are you pregnant or not? It’s a huge question, and likely pregnancy tests will not be of any help to you until about a week later.


What is Implantation Bleeding?

Implantation bleeding is vaginal discharge which usually contains a small amount of pinkish or brownish blood.   It happens when the fertilized egg implants into the uterus and releases a small amount of blood.   Unfortunately, only around one-third of women who are pregnant experience implantation bleeding.


When Does Implantation Bleeding Usually Occur?

So how do you know if it is pregnancy or just your period rearing its ugly head? Well, you don’t really know for sure.  Typically, you will find implantation bleeding will occur a little before your period is due.   If you are going to see implantation bleeding, it usually will happen between 6 and 12 days past ovulation.   If you have a normal 28 day cycle, the 12 days past ovulation is VERY close to when your period would start.  If you are having other period symptoms such as cramps, back pain, and fatigue while you are bleeding chances are your period is starting.

If you have a bit of bleeding without any of these extra period like symptoms, it is likely not your period. Again, these distinctions are not particularly fool proof, and are not very reliable.   If your bleeding gets worse, it is likely a period, as implantation bleeding is usually relatively light — just a little bit of blood on the panties with no other symptoms.


If It Was Implantation Bleeding, When Will a Pregnancy Test Be Positive?


Chances are, if you are reading this, you are trying to convince yourself that the bleeding you are experiencing is actually implantation bleeding.  As much as you would like a definite “YES!  You are pregnant!”,  the only way to be sure is see the positive pregnancy test result.    Luckily, you don’t have wait too terribly long to be able to get accurate results from a home pregnancy test.  If you experienced what you think is implantation bleeding at the six days past ovulation (DPO) mark,   you may be able to get a positive pregnancy test in about 4 days which is typically a bit before your  period is due.   If implantation occurred closer to 12 days past ovulation, you may have to wait until your period is actually late to test.  It typically take about 2 to 3 days, after implantation,  for there to be enough hCG (the pregnancy hormone) in your urine to register a positive on a sensitive home pregnancy test.

Last modified: June 8, 2014