Take the Quiz
Is this a normal period?
- Are you changing your pads +/or tampons every 1-2 hours for the first 1-2 days of your period?
- Are you still changing your pads +/or tampons on days 3 or later of your period?
- Are you bleeding for more than 10 days?
- Are your periods showing up less than 20 days apart?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you are not alone! There are 1.4 million women in the US who are experiencing excessive, heavy menstrual bleeding, known as Abnormal Uterine Bleeding (AUB).
This is beyond disruptive
As you can imagine, over half of women with heavy menstrual bleeding say that their periods interfere with their lives compared to women with lighter cycles.
Jane* skipped her daughter’s weekend soccer games because she couldn’t count on finding a clean bathroom in case she needed to change her protection.
Melanie* was tired of ruining sheets and her mattress from heavy nighttime flow, so resorted to slipping a plastic sheet over her mattress, which made a lot of rustling noises that kept her and her husband awake.
Abby* was afraid to discuss her bleeding with her health care providers for fear that the only remedy would be a hysterectomy.
Definition of Heavy Bleeding
The American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) defines Abnormal Uterine Bleeding this way:
- Bleeding that soaks through a pad or tampon in less than 1-2 hours for 1-2 days
- Bleeding that comes more frequently than every 20 days
- Bleeding that lasts for more than 10 days
- Bleeding in excess of 80 cc a month – a super tampon or pad can hold approximately 10 cc of blood- that’s only 8 tampons per cycle
- Bleeding that causes anemia
- Bleeding that leads to disruption in life style
Source: ACOG, Committee Opinion. April 2013 (reaffirmed 2015), number 557.
If you or someone you know has this amount of bleeding with their period, do see a health care provider for an evaluation.
There are many new painless ways and non-invasive ways to diagnose and treat heavy, abnormal periods from hell. Most women will not need surgery, and can get their bleeding under control. Don’t let fear prevent you from getting the care you need.