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What Do Different Menstrual Blood Colours Mean?

Menstrual cycles are a monthly occurrence that usually lasts for about a week. A host of problems is usually associated with the period, including headaches, stomach pain and heavy cramps. Everyone who gets their period knows very well that while there are some symptoms they suffer every month, periods can differ from month to month. One of the things that can be different is the colour of menstrual blood. Most often, as the blood flows quickly from the body, it will be red or pink in colour. However, darker shades, such as brown or black, can also occur. According to experts, this simply means that the blood flows slower. If you don’t know this, however, it may be the cause of a lot of worries.

It is quite normal for blood to have different colours throughout the period, being sometimes lighter, sometimes darker. It is good to know what certain colours indicate, so that all unnecessary worry may be avoided, but also so that potential problems might be spotted in time.


Pink is a normal shade for the early stages of a period. Should it appear in the middle of the cycle, it may a hormonal disorder, some disease of the reproductive tract or even early pregnancy. If this happens, it is best to visit a gynaecologist.


The blood is bright when it flows quickly out of the body, not having any time to darken. It usually happens after a busy day and the flow is light. This is entirely normal and is no cause for worry. Should it continue for longer than a week and the blood turns pink, it is a sign of a problem.

Dark red

A darker shade of red is completely normal for a cycle, usually occurring in the middle days. However, if the colour doesn’t lighten and there is much more blood than usual, it may signal a miscarriage or the possibility of a tumour.


This shade is quite uncommon for a period. When period blood turns this orange-red, it is often followed by an unusual odour too. A visit to a gynaecologist, in this case, is a must. The blood may turn this shade because of mixing with fluids from the cervix, or it may point to a host of different infections.

Brown – black

This is another quite common occurrence in period blood. While it may look alarming, a flow with a darker shade means that the blood was in the uterus for a longer time. This sort of colour is often seen in the morning. It is harmless and shouldn’t raise any alarms. If however, it is accompanied by a yellowish colour in the blood too, then it may be a sign of an infection.

Heavy bleeding

A stronger, heavier flow usually happens in the second or third day of the period. It is normal and experienced by most.

On the other hand, if there are only small traces of blood, if the period is very late or doesn’t happen at all, then a visit to the gynaecologist is in order. This may indicate early pregnancy or a hormonal disorder.

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