Are Large Blood Clots During Your Period Normal?

Hi Heather,

I’ve noticed something during my last few periods that has been freaking me out. I get these really large clumps of blood coming out of me that look kind of weird. It happens at least once every time I have my period. I looked it up online and I think it’s a big clot, but I’m confused. Is this a bad thing and should I be worried? What even is a large clot?

bloody

What you’re describing – it sounds like it is indeed a blood clot – seems perfectly normal to me. Every woman experiences a different period, and so not everyone has had or has noticed a large clot come out of them… but that doesn’t mean it’s weird, scary, or an indication that something is wrong with you! To get some legit advice from a medical professional, I turned to my friend Dr. Sherry Ross from the site HelloFlo for answers. 

Dr. Ross said, “It’s important to know what is normal so you will know what is abnormal. In a perfect world, periods come every 28 days, last three to five days, and cramps don’t exist, but this may not be your story. Normal blood flow usually requires three to six pads or tampons each day. The normal amount blood loss is around 4-12 teaspoons each cycle.”

She continues, “If your blood flow is heavy and leaves the uterus quickly, blood clots are not usually created. But if you have a heavy flow and blood leaves the uterus slowly, blood clots develop. Blood clots are not uncommon during a period. They tend to be dark or bright red in color, and come in irregular shapes and sizes. Small clots the size of raisins are usually nothing to worry about and can happen during a heavy blood flow. Larger and thicker blood clots, greater than the size of a quarter, are reasons to be concerned.”

Why is that? Dr. Ross says, “These types of periods can cause significant blood loss which can lead to fatigue, weakness, and anemia. Regular periods that are heavy, soaking through one or more pads or tampons every hour, passing large quarter size blood clots or disrupting your normal daily activities should be evaluated by your health care provider.”

Basically, here’s the deal: blood clots in and of themselves are normal. You should see a doctor if you notice very large, thick clots all the time, and if you’re constantly experiencing heavy blood flow. If that’s happening to you, call your gynecologist to make sure everything is okay down there. If you’re only seeing a clot once in a while, that may not be a huge issue, but you might still want to get it checked out just to be safe. Good luck!

What’s on your mind? Heather can help! Send her your question at heather@gurl.com You can also reach our buddies at HelloFlo with questions about your body or health. Just ask Dr. Flo at HelloFlo!

 

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