Implantation Bleeding After Conception - When it Happens & What it Looks Like
If you are trying to conceive, you are dying to see that positive pregnancy test! One of the first signs of pregnancy that you can look for is implantation bleeding.
What Happens Before Implantation
Before you notice implantation bleeding, several things need to occur in your body.
Ovulation usually occurs once a month. Your ovary releases the egg into your fallopian tubes about 14 days before your period is due. Once released, your egg survives 12 to 24 hours. If not fertilized in that time, your egg will start to disintegrate.
Optimally, having sex as close to ovulation as possible increases your chance of getting pregnant. Healthy sperm can survive up to 5 days in the woman's reproductive tract. If you have sex before ovulation or the day of ovulation, lucky sperm might be waiting to fertilize the egg.
Implantation of the Fertilized Egg
Once conception has occurred, the fertilized egg will travel to the uterus. As the egg moves toward the uterus, the cells will divide and grow in size. When the egg arrives at the uterus, it will attach to the uterine wall (implantation). It starts to produce the hormone that pregnancy tests detect, hCG, after implanting. The time required for the egg to travel to the uterus and implant is usually between 7 and 10 days.
What Are Implantation Cramps?
Cramps are a common symptom of implantation. They usually start after implantation. Some women have mild to moderate cramping when the egg implants into the uterine wall.
You may also feel sensations like:
- a pulling feeling
- a weird tingling feeling in the uterine area
Having intense period-like cramping when the egg implants is not common. Implantation cramping may be accompanied by implantation bleeding.
What is Implantation Bleeding?When the egg implants, some women experience implantation bleeding. You may notice a small amount of blood when you wipe after using the bathroom. The blood is typically a light pink or brownish tinted color. The amount is much less than when your period starts. When the egg implants in your uterus, it develops a trophoblast layer of cells. The trophoblast provides nutrients to the growing egg by burrowing into the uterine wall. When this happens, a small amount of blood can leak into the uterine cavity, causing implantation bleeding. Implantation bleeding does not occur with every woman.
Is Implantation Bleeding Normal in Early Pregnancy & Does Everyone Experience it?Yes, it is normal. Usually, only about 30% of women will experience implantation bleeding, though. That means 70% of newly pregnant women will not have implantation bleeding if they are pregnant. You will need to rely on other early pregnancy symptoms or wait until you get a positive pregnancy test to find out.
When Does Implantation Bleeding Happen?Implantation bleeding typically happens 7 to 10 days after conception or 4 to 7 days before your period is due to arrive. All women's bodies are different, though, and this time frame is average. Some women will have implantation bleeding sooner or later than noted.
Implantation Bleeding Calculator
It is hard to pinpoint when implantation happens. Implantation can happen with no bleeding at all, so don't worry if you don't experience this.
You can get an average date you would expect to see implantation bleeding by doing a bit of math.
The most accurate way is by using the day you ovulated.
The day you ovulated + 9 days = Possible day you would see implantation bleeding if you are pregnant. It may be earlier or later depending on your body, but this gives you a good guess.
If you don't know when you ovulated, you can use the date your last period started.
With that date, you can figure out when you ovulated. You will need to know how long your cycle is and then subtract 14 days (the standard luteal phase) to find out what day you ovulate on in your cycle.
If you have a 28-day cycle, you will ovulate on day 14.
If you have a 30-day cycle, you will likely ovulate on day 16.
After you have the day you ovulated, you add that number to the date your last period started to determine when you ovulated this month.
So, let's assume you have 29-day cycles. Which means you should ovulate on day 15.
Your period started on the 1st of the month. The day you start bleeding is day 1 of your cycle. You will have ovulated on the 15th of the month if you have a 29-day cycle.
To determine when implantation bleeding might happen, add 9 days to the 15th. You may see implantation bleeding on the 24th of the month. Or a little before. Or a little after. Everyone's body is a little different, so it varies.
What Does Implantation Bleeding Look Like?The bleeding that can occur when implantation occurs can be very light pink or brown. It usually shows up as light spotting. There isn't a flow to speak of.
How Long Does Implantation Bleeding Last?Implantation bleeding only usually lasts a day or two. If it lasts longer than that and is more than spotting, your period may have arrived earlier than expected.
How Can I Tell If It's Implantation Bleeding Or My Period?The main differences are the color, flow level, and duration. Implantation bleeding is usually spotting that is light pink or brown and lasts a day or two. Your period will be heavier, last longer, and be a darker red.
When Can I Take a Pregnancy Test After Implantation?If you are reading this, you are trying to convince yourself that you are experiencing implantation bleeding. As much as you would like a definite "YES! You are pregnant!", the only way to be sure is to see the positive pregnancy test result.
Luckily, you don't have to wait too long for accurate results from a pregnancy test. If you experienced bleeding at six days past ovulation (DPO), you might get a positive in about four days, typically a bit before your period is due.
If implantation happens closer to 12 DPO, you might have to wait until you miss your period to take a test. You will have to wait at least 2 to 3 days to take a test. It takes that long for the hCG level to be high enough to show a positive result on a sensitive home pregnancy test.
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