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Can You Get Pregnant During Your Period?

While not likely, it is possible to to get pregnant if you have unprotected sex while on your period. Every woman has heard the long enduring myth. Technically, a woman cannot get pregnant during her period, but unprotected sex at this time can still result in conception. As a woman blossoms, she is taught several general truths. She is told that once, every 28 days, she will menstruate and that, 14 days later ovulation, she will ovulate. It is explained that this is the time during which her body will be primed to make a baby. Unfortunately, this is not true for every woman. While the chances are relatively low,  a woman is able to get pregnant during her period.

What Happens in Your Body?

Let’s take a look at what really happens in a woman’s body. In general, an egg is released into the fallopian tubes at ovulation. This happens at about 14 days after a woman’s period starts. The egg will travel to the uterus (or womb), and can be fertilized anywhere along the route. The life of an unfertilized egg in the womb is a short one and in the absence of sperm will begin the process that leads to menstruation.

Why it is Possible for a Woman to Get Pregnant During Her Period?

The differences in women’s bodies and menstrual cycles are one factor in the possibility of an unexpected pregnancy. Early ovulation, non-period bleeding, and the lifespan of sperm within a woman’s body are additional factors. Bleeding around the time of the menses, is not always a period. A woman may also experience bleeding when she begins to ovulate, or has experienced trauma to the cervix. When a female is in the early and late years of menstruation, her cycle often varies from month to month as well. Any one of these reasons, combined with unprotected sex, makes it possible for a woman to get pregnant during her period.

The biggest contributor to conception, while a woman is on her period, is the ability of sperm to thrive in a woman’s body. While ovulation typically does not happen when the period is happening,  a male’s sperm can survive up to 5 days within a woman.  When a couple has sex during menstruation, healthy sperm that enter the woman’s body will wait around to do their job. Once ovulation begins, all factors are present for the successful fertilization of the egg.

  • Monica

    I do not know if I’m pregnancy want to do

  • Kim

    I just start my period and I had sex and sperm got inside of me can I get pregnant

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    While possible, it isn’t likely.

  • Mami

    I had my period 8/05/13 I had sex today the condom didnt break but
    We think the sperm came out through the sides…could I be pregnant.

  • Skinny lover

    I had unprotive sex 8 ago and I start to bleed on the 10 and I stop bleeding on the 14 can I still be pregnant ?

  • jackz11

    I started my period friday 9.20.13 was light by sunday when i had unprotected sex.can i become pregnant?

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    It is not likely but it is possible. If you don’t want to get pregnant, it is best to use some sort of contraceptive method.

  • jackz11

    Trying to get pregnant. I had sex again the last day of my period.could that possible mean im pregnant..?

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    Most likely not unless you have very short cycles.

  • jackz11

    Whats considered regular cycle and short cycle

  • http://www.babyhopes.com/ Vickie B.

    The average normal cycle length is 28 days – calculated from the day your period starts to the day before it starts the next month.

  • Victoria

    I did the same and I don’t want to get pregnant wat sort of methods are there

  • WorriedTeen

    I had sex during the last few days of my period on Oct 23, i took a test early this month on Dec 8th it was negative but it is now the 20th and i still havent got my period. Is it possible that i might be pregnant? Help me please

  • maryanne

    I was four days late for my period and I had unprotected sec wutg my boyfriend now I am seven days late and still no period. Should I be worried?

  • fifi

    hello,i had my period on february28th to 4th march,and i had sex with my boyfriend on 8th and 12th march ,feel like pregnant,eating,sleeping too much,but today 26th march i start bleeding,am i pregnant or not?

Last modified: March 7, 2014

The information provided here should not be considered medical advice. It is based on the average experience of women trying to conceive and may not be what you may be experiencing. It's not meant to be a replacement for any advice you may receive from your doctor. If you have any concerns about your cycle or our ability to get pregnant, we advise you to contact your doctor.