How much bleeding during pregnancy is normal ?

How much bleeding during pregnancy is normal

Bleeding during pregnancy can be quite restless for a pregnant woman. However, it is important to keep in mind that little blood discharge does not always mean miscarriage. The reality is spotting is very common, and about one-third of pregnant women experienced this.

Spotting or light bleeding during pregnancy

Spotting or Light Bleeding during pregnancy

Spotting or light bleeding during pregnancy is not always harmful. Despite the initial bleeding problems, many pregnant women give birth to healthy babies with the help of adequate rest and medicines. Spotting does not have any effect on the health of the baby inside the womb, but bleeding may indicate different complications such as abortion, ectopic pregnancy, placental abortion, or placenta previa. So it should never be overlooked. 

Bleeding during the first 20 weeks of pregnancy

About 20 percent of pregnant women can have vaginal bleeding during the first trimester of pregnancy. According to doctors, there may be several reasons for spotting or bleeding during the first half of pregnancy which is described below :

Implantation bleeding 

Some women may have some normal spotting at the onset of pregnancy because during this time fertilized egg implants in the lining of the uterus. 

Hormone levels change 

Bleeding in early pregnancy may also be due to the hormones that control menstruation.

Cervical or vaginal infections 

Bleeding may occur in the first trimester of pregnancy due to either cervix, vaginal or sexual infections (like chlamydia, gonorrhea, or herpes). These infections can be treated early during pregnancy with the help of a doctor's suggestion.

Sexual relationship 

During pregnancy, the cervix contains extra blood flow. The hormones that are released during pregnancy make changes in the surface of the equinox, which increases the risk of bleeding after making friction such as sex.


Many times the placenta is attached to the uterus in such a place, where there are fibroids in some of its lining which causes bleeding several times. But there is no harm by this spotting or light bleeding to the unborn baby inside the womb.

When to immediately call a doctor?

Sometimes bleeding may indicate a serious condition in the first 20 weeks and you should immediately consult the doctor. This bleeding may be due to any of the following reasons :


During the first 12 weeks of pregnancy, miscarriage is the most common and in the first trimester, bleeding is susceptible to abortion. Usually, miscarriage occurs during early pregnancy, when the embryo is not developing properly. "Some women miscarriage even before they feel pregnant because they feel that their periods are going on."

Ectopic pregnancy 

In an ectopic pregnancy, fertile embryos implant outside the uterus, usually in the fallopian tube. If the embryo continues to grow there then the fallopian tube can burst, which can prove to be life-threatening to the mother.

Molar pregnancy 

Molar pregnancy is a rare condition, in which the normal cells develop into the uterus instead of the embryo. This happens when the embryo is not developing properly but some cells of the uterus begin to multiply. In rare cases, the cell can be cancerous and spread to other parts of the body.

Chemical pregnancy 

When the egg is fertilized but not fully implanted in the uterus, it is called a chemical pregnancy. It can be detected by checking the hormone level during pregnancy.

Bleeding in the second half of pregnancy

Complications of ectopic pregnancy and chemical pregnancy are not expected when the half-term period of pregnancy is completed. The risk of miscarriage becomes very low after the first trimester of pregnancy is completed. Although bleeding in the second trimester, it should be viewed very seriously. During this period of pregnancy bleeding may be due to the following reasons :

Onset of delivery

Generally, delivery begins with the release of blood and mucus from the vagina. "This discharge is called a 'bloody show' and it happens when the cervix starts spreading and some small nerves burst. The blood volume is very low in this discharge. "Bleeding is the beginning of delivery in the last phase of pregnancy. If a pregnant woman experiences cramping pain before 36 weeks, it is possible that her delivery has begun prematurely. In this situation, contact the doctor immediately.

Placental abortion

Placental abortion is a very serious condition, in which the placenta is separated from the uterus, and blood is collected between the placenta and uterus. This condition can be very dangerous for both the mother and the unborn baby.

Placenta previa

This condition occurs when the placenta partially or completely covers the cervix and it can cause severe bleeding during pregnancy or delivery.

Uterine rupture

In rare cases, it happens that during the pregnancy, the old cesarean section will open again. Bursting of the uterus can prove to be fatal for the mother.

Vasa Previa

Vasa Previa is a pregnancy complication in which fetal blood vessels cross or run near the internal opening of the cervix. When the membranes ruptured then the fetus may lose a substantial amount of blood. This condition can be dangerous for the unborn baby if bleeding is severe.

When does bleeding begin during pregnancy?

If you are experiencing spotting or bleeding during pregnancy any amount of blood can be a sign of complications, so consult your doctor if you saw blood discharge from your vagina during pregnancy and keep the following points in mind:
  • Use a pad, so you get to know how much bleeding you are having and to find out the type of bloody discharge from your vagina (for example, pink, brown or red, liquid or clotting). 

  • If you are experiencing bleeding during pregnancy, then avoid using the tampon.

  • If you are experiencing spotting or bleeding then abstain from having sex.

  • Focus on other symptoms such as tingling in the stomach, back pain, excessive vomiting, and fainting with spotting. 

Your doctor may perform the following tests to find out the reasons for bleeding/spotting :

  • Your doctor can examine urine and blood to check the hormone level during pregnancy.

  • Ultrasound Scan

  • Your blood group and Rh level to check the entire blood count.

If you see some bleeding during defecation at the onset of pregnancy, do not get panic and inform your doctor about it. It is likely that your doctor can advise you to take a rest so that you feel comfortable during your pregnancy.

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Disclaimer: This content is intended for general information only and should not be used as the basis of patient treatment. The given content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, treatment, or any diagnosis. Always consult a doctor for more information. Our website doesn't claim responsibility for this information.

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