How Long Should Your Period Actually Last?

What isn’t stressful about periods? We never know exactly when they’re going to come, they come with a lot of uncomfortable PMS symptoms, and they can make your skin flare up. Plus, there’s that constant fear that you’re going to get a massive leak through your jeans. Ugh.

Most people worry about when their period is going to come. When it finally does come, the next question you might have is how long it is going to last? If it seems like your period is never-ending, you might be worried something is wrong. And you might have visions of all the blood from your body coming out of your vagina. (I know I’m not the only dramatic person here.)

If you’re concerned about the length of your period, here’s the deal on how long a period should last.

Is there actually an “ideal” range your period should last?

If you were to ask your friends how long their periods last on average, you might be surprised with the results because they numbers can vary. Every person is different and every period is different. But, there are some general guidelines of what’s normal. The brilliantly named reports that a normal period typically last around three to five days, but a range of two days to seven days is normal. SELF seconds the two to seven days ratio as normal. Very Well Health says one to seven days is normal.

One to two-day periods! Really?

Yes, I know. Imagine if you only had to put up with your period for 48 hours at most. These people are definitely on the lightest scale of the spectrum. If you fall into it, don’t sweat. And if your period hits between the three to seven-day range, you’re still normal. You just have to use more tampons and/or pads than those with fast periods.

What if my period lasts longer than seven days?

It depends how much longer and your history. It’s a good idea to keep track of when you get your periods and how long they last because that can give you an indication of what’s normal for your body and what isn’t. You will also want to consider what’s going on in your life. If you’re just starting your period, it’s fairly common for things to be irregular at first. Periods can change depending on how heavy they are, how long they last, and when they come.

Other considerations are whether you’ve just gone on or off birth control pills, whether you have any health issues, new medications you’ve started taking, changes in diet, exercise, stress, and more. They might seem like little things, but they can impact your period.

My period has been longer than seven days for a couple of times. Should I see a doctor?

It’s a good idea to speak to your doctor because he/she can see if there are any underlying causes to explain your long period. You’ll want to ensure you see a doctor if your periods are long and heavy. If you’ve got a heavy flow that goes beyond seven days you could have menorrhagia. I know that names sounds scary, but it’s not that bad. It’s just characterized as heavy bleeding and a long period. That being said, it’s important to get things looked after because if you’re bleeding for an extended period of time, it can cause other issues like anemia.

What’s considered heavy bleeding?

Many consider heavy bleeding to be when you need to change your pad or tampon every two hours otherwise you risk leaks/problems.

Anything else?

Even if your period falls within the “normal” range, it’s still important to be on the lookout for changes. Our bodies often give us clues when something is amiss so pay attention to pick up on them. That’s why keeping a diary of when you get your period and how it is can be helpful because you’ll be able to pinpoint any changes.

Remember, it’s better to get something checked out at the doctor rather than stressing by yourself. You doctor is the medical professional and will be able to suggest treatment, if anything is needed. If everything is okay, he/she will be able to provide reassurance.

How long does your period usually last? Let us know in the comments!


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