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.

  • JamieAnn13

    Idk if I had implantation bleeding or if something is wrong. I started spotting two weeks and a couple days after my period. That’s mean two more weeks till its time for my next. It says in the article that implantation bleeding occurs a week or so before next period. Mine occurred two weeks. It lasted 3 day. Very light. First day it was a pinkish red color almost not visible and the last two days a brownish red color. I am now two days late on my period and I took a pregnancy test and still negative. My husband and I have been trying to get pregnant for 5 months now. I just wanna know what am I experiencing.

  • BeeSue

    Hey Jamie – I’m not much help but I’m in exactly the same boat as you! Been trying for 5 months now and had 3 days of light bleeding a week and half before my period is supposed to start. Seems “too soon” for implantation bleeding but it’s so different from any of the other months that I can’t help but hope!!

  • Vickie B.

    It sounds like you may have a bit of an hormonal imbalance going on. If you are not pregnant, you may be experiencing break through bleeding. You may want to get your doctor to check what your hormone levels are or start taking a fertility supplement to balance yourself out.

  • Danielle

    Hey girls, thought I would share my experience as it may help. My husband and I have been trying to conceive for a few months now. I had my last period on July 27th and it lasted really long, about 11 days. We had sex on the days I thought I was ovulating and I was supposed to start my period this past Sunday, 4 days ago. I took a pregnancy test a few days before that just to see and it was negative. I woke up the day I was supposed to start my period and when I went to wipe after peeing there was bright red blood on the toilet paper with some clots. I thought for sure I had started my period like clockwork. Over the next couple days I had a really light period, basically just brown discharge and a little blood. Yesterday it almost stopped completely and today I had nothing. I thought it was a bit strange because I still should have had my period for at least a few more days and it usually turns heavy by then. I thought I would just take a pregnancy test for the hell of it (I was feeling unusually tired) and low and behold it came back as a very faint positive (plus sign). I took a digital one right after and it said pregnant, 1-2 weeks! So there you have it, I guess I was having implantation bleeding. I was not expecting it though because it literally started the day I was supposed to get my period!

  • Chianne

    So here is my story: I take Leena Birth control religiously since October of last year, so I am NOT trying to get pregnant. (My birth control not only is supposed to prevent me from having a “real” period by stopping ovulation and gives me a “mock bleeding period” , but it also makes the vaginal mucous more watery to prevent sperm from swimming, if I happen to ovulate) August 8th my husband and I had sex and before that July 28-31st ish? August 12-14th, I had my period on time for the usual amount of time. August 20 I started getting nauseous for no apparent reasons during the morning and late evening. I was also beginning to be unusually moody, having heightened sense of smell. August 25th I experienced very light brown bleeding until yesterday, the 26th. I have also been getting more and more nauseous and having odd cravings. Could I be pregnant, or could my birth control need to be changed? I am going to be buying a few tests to take today, next week and the next. Help?!

  • Marissa Ann

    Okay so I’m really curious to hear y’all’s opinion.

    So my last period started 8/6/14. We had sex the week I was fertile and the day of ovulation, which was around the 21th of August.
    I’m supposed to start around the 8th, but earlier today I noticed a small amount of spotting. I didn’t know what it was, and went to sleep only to wake and see more spots of blood. It’s not like my regular period.
    I asked my friends and family that have had kids and none of them ever had implantation bleeding, so they all think I’ve either gotten my period or am having a miscarriage. I don’t think it’s a miscarriage though, and my period is not like this.

    Can any of y’all help me out?

Last modified: June 8, 2014