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Is it normal to have such a short period after birth control?

By September 15, 2009 - 9:36am
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I stopped taking birth control pills in June. I had one normal period. My next cycle was 35 days - 6 day period. This past cycle was 43 days! But my period lasted 2 and a half days...is that normal? My husband and I are trying to conceive. I thought I was pregnant, took a blood test and the next morning I got my period (very short period). Could it be that I ovulated much later in my cycle and that my "period" was implantation?

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I doubt the length of your cycle could determine the actual length of your period although it does sound like you are getting irregular. Have you had your ovaries checked? The reason I'm asking this is because I had polycestic ovaries and the irregular periods where the symptoms of it. During those times, I had no luck conceiving at all but once my ovaries got treated, and a little help from lady-comp to assist me in determining when is the best time for me to ovulate, I'm now a proud mama!
Just don't give up that easily and never stop to seek for answers as well. Best of luck!

September 16, 2009 - 7:56pm

Thank You. I have already read about all that before trying to conceive. It's just that after such a long cycle (43 days) I would have thought that my period would have been heavier and last longer.

September 16, 2009 - 2:31pm
HERWriter Guide

Hi again, Kimm

It sounds like your periods are 'naturally' irregular and it was your birth control that regulated it.

Kimm, one of our writers, Krisha McCoy, MS has written an excellent article on fertility and menstrual cycles that I think will help you a lot; here is an excerpt:

On average, a woman’s menstrual cycle is 28 days long, but it can vary—from approximately 17-36 days. Day 1 of your menstrual cycle begins on the first day of your period. Between Day 7 and 11, the lining of your uterus begins to thicken, preparing for a fertilized egg to implant. Around Day 14 of a 28-day cycle, changes in hormones cause a mature egg to be released from an ovary and travel down a fallopian tube toward your uterus. It is here that a sperm may fertilize the egg, and if this occurs and the egg attaches to the lining of the uterus, pregnancy occurs.

When trying to get pregnant, it is helpful to know when the egg is released, as that is the best time to achieve a pregnancy. The table below describes four of the most common methods that can be used to track when you are most fertile each month.

Method Description
Basal body temperature This method involves taking your basal body temperature (BBT) each morning at the same time before you get out of bed and recording it on a chart . For this method you will need to purchase a BBT thermometer at a drug store for about $10, since the thermometer must be accurate enough to detect temperature changes of at least 1/10 of a degree. During your menstrual cycle, your body temperature is lower (96-98ºF) until ovulation. On the day of ovulation, your temperature will rise between 0.4 and 0.8ºF, and remain at that level until your period starts. Once your temperature stays at this higher level (97-99ºF) for three days, it is likely that you ovulated. Your most fertile days are the 2-3 days before your temperature hits its highest point, and the 12-24 hours after you have ovulated. Since you may not see the temperature rise until the day after ovulation, this method is best used to track your ovulation pattern over the course of a few months and begin to learn how to predict when you will ovulate.
Calendar With the calendar method, you will use a calendar to track your menstrual cycle for 8-12 months. Circle Day 1 (the first day of your period) on the calendar. Since cycle lengths can vary, make a list of the number of days of your cycle each month (i.e., Day 1 through the day before your next period).
◦To find the first day when you are the most fertile, subtract 18 from your shortest cycle, and mark an X on your calendar on this day of each cycle. (For example, if your shortest cycle was 27 days, the first day you are the most fertile will be Day 9 of your cycle; 27-18=9.)
◦To find the last day you are fertile, subtract 11 from your longest cycle and draw an X through this date. (For example, if your longest cycle was 29 days, the last day you are fertile will be Day 18 of your cycle; 29-11=18.)
Since this method cannot pinpoint the exact day you ovulate, it should be used in combination with other methods.
Cervical mucus If you use the cervical mucus method, you will track changes in your cervical mucus (the fluid at the opening of your cervix) during your cycle. Hormonal changes that control ovulation also affect the type and quantity of cervical mucus. Right after your period, there will be a few days of little or no mucus, known as “dry days.” As the egg starts to mature, the quantity of mucus increases, and is usually white or yellow and cloudy and sticky. Just before ovulation (the “wet days”), the greatest amount of mucus appears, and it will be clear, slippery, and sometimes stretchy, similar to raw egg whites. Again, your most fertile days are just before and just after ovulation.
Ovulation predictor kit There are a variety of ovulation prediction kits available in drug stores. These kits measure the amount of luteinizing hormone (LH) in your urine, and use this information to determine when you ovulate. There are two types of kits:
◦One type is used to measure LH for the days during your menstrual cycle you are most likely to be fertile (see the calendar method above). A package of 5-9 tests costs $15-$30, and you can expect to spend $15-$70 per month.
◦The other type of kit measures your LH level daily, and tells you when your fertility is low, high, and peak. These testing machines cost around $170, and a month’s worth of test strips cost about $50.

Kimm - does this information help you?

September 16, 2009 - 1:36pm
HERWriter Guide

Hi Kymm

Thanks for your question and welcome!

Your "period" could have been implantation bleeding but this would not be like a regular period - as in, it wouldn't be heavy. Implantation is more spotting and light bleeding.

Unfortunately, you also may just have very irregular periods, which sometimes makes it difficult to conceive since ovulation is difficult to predict.

I have a few questions for you - before being on birth control, were your periods irregular? How old are you? Our cycles change with age, especially over the age of 35. And what was the result of your blood test?

September 16, 2009 - 11:22am
(reply to Susan Cody)

I'm 22 years old. I have been on the pill for 6 years...I don't remember how my periods were before that. My blood test was in fact negative.
My "period" was not very heavy, it was brown, pink and red and mucous-like. It would stop and come back...

September 16, 2009 - 1:24pm
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