Ask Sofia: Why do I have bleeding between periods?
While many women experience spotting or intermittent bleeding between periods, it can be both confusing and concerning. If you have recently started taking hormonal birth control, spotting can occur for several months and is a normal side effect. Other common causes include ovulation, when your hormones shift mid-cycle, or egg fertilization in the case of pregnancy. Stress and other changes in medication can also affect your cycle.
However, it is important to differentiate between spotting and persistent bleeding. Bleeding between cycles can also be a sign of an ectopic pregnancy, when a fertilized egg implants in the fallopian tube, or miscarriage as well as infection, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), fibroids and polyps, perimenopause and other issues.
If you have spotting ever month or are experiencing pain in your abdomen, fever, bleeding post-menopause, dizziness or other symptoms that aren’t improving, contact your doctor. It is also helpful if you track your cycle and the days of spotting.
“Every woman is different and spotting can happen for a variety of reasons,” said Dr. Amy Hammers. “It is always helpful to pay attention to what your body is telling you and reach out to us if you have any questions or concerns.”