10 Reasons Why Periods Last Longer Than Before

10 Reasons Why Periods Last Longer Than Before

While there isn’t a normal number of days how long your periods are supposed to last, with time every woman tends to have a regular cycle and a number of set days for how long her period lasts. However, if you notice a sudden change in this cycle and periods all of a sudden are lasting longer, you might be wondering what the reason behind this might be. There are several reasons why your period might start to last longer. These reasons might be:

Getting an IUD

Women who have just gotten an intrauterine device as a type of birth control might start to get longer periods. An intrauterine device is placed directly into the cervix and there are two types of it. One is a non-hormonal, copper-based intrauterine device, while the other one is a hormonal, progestin based one. While it is normal for the period to last longer, it is recommended to visit a doctor if the period lasts longer for three cycles in a row. Both types of intrauterine devices are able to cause long bleedings, especially in the period right after being inserted. This is a known side effect f this type of birth control, but it more often happens after the insertion of a copper*based intrauterine device. The progestin intrauterine device is more likely to completely eliminate, or make the periods lighter. This is, however, an effect that only occurs over time and the first few cycles right after insertion might still last longer. If this bleeding lasts longer than three cycles, it is recommended to see a doctor, as this might be a sign that the body is rejecting the intrauterine device, or that it has moved out of position.

You are ovulating

Bleeding for a longer period of time than usual can also be a sign that you are ovulating. It’s other known as intermenstrual bleeding and it occurs around the period of time when you should be ovulating. It usually isn’t a sign for concern, however, if this prolonged period occurs all of a sudden and is accompanied by pain, you should get it checked out by a doctor.


While the common belief is that you don’t get your period when you’re pregnant, this is not always the case. Longer bleeding can also be a sign of pregnancy. Therefore, if all of a sudden, your period is lasting longer, you should exclude the possibility of being pregnant by taking a pregnancy test.

Hormonal birth control

Just as with intrauterine devices, other types of birth control that manipulate your hormones might cause a change in your menstrual bleeding. This also includes birth control pills, implants, patches, rings or shots. As this shouldn’t be the case, you should inform your doctor if you’re bleeding longer. In this case, your doctor might prescribe you another hormonal birth control, to which your body will react better.

An early miscarriage

A first and mostly only symptom of an early miscarriage is a long period or a sudden extra heavy bleeding. The length of the cycle should get back to normal after one or three cycles. If this still is the case after three cycles, you should visit a doctor. An early miscarriage is very common and can even occur before the woman even realizes that she is pregnant.

Polycystic ovary syndrome

A polycystic ovary syndrome is a condition where cysts grow on the ovaries and prevent the eggs from maturing. This often makes the woman infertile. Polycystic ovary syndrome can cause weight gain, hair growth and prolonged periods. Having long periods accompanied by other symptoms such as weight gain and facial hair growth, you should visit a gynecologist and get tested for polycystic ovary syndrome.

Thyroid issues

Women who have hypothyroidism, low thyroid function, might have to deal with prolonged periods at some point. The prolonged periods are however usually accompanied by other symptoms, such as weight gain, hair loss, and fatigue. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, you should visit a doctor.

A blood disorder

Although this is a rather rare cause, prolonged periods can sometimes be a sign of a blood disorder, such as the hematologic blood disease. Other conditions like haemophilia or Van Willebrand are genetic and women usually already know if they suffer under such a condition. If, however, there is no known cause behind your prolonged periods and you’ve already been tested for other conditions, it is worth it to speak to your doctor about ruling out a blood disorder.

Uterine polyps or fibroids

Polyps and fibroids are uterine abnormalities, which can also lead to increased blood flow and therefore prolonged periods. The reason behind it is that your body knows that there’s something in the uterus that shouldn’t be there, and attempts to get rid of it. Polyps and fibroids are very common and don’t show any other symptoms but prolonged periods. Your doctor will usually want to keep an eye on them, but you won’t need therapy for it unless they start to grow very large or cause you pain. In this case, they can be surgically removed.

Cervical cancer

Vaginal bleeding that is abnormal, such as prolonged periods, spotting between periods or bleeding after sexual intercourse, can be a sign of cervical cancer. A cervical abnormality can be detected through Pap tests and HPV tests; therefore, it is recommended to regularly visit your gynecologist and perform the necessary preventive tests.

In general, a prolonged period might not be a reason to worry at all. However, you should keep an eye on it and wait out whether your next cycle will be normal again. IF this change is still there after three cycles and the bleeding is rather heavy, you should visit your gynecologist and see whether there is a more serious cause behind this sudden change. In general, each woman should have regular visits at the gynecologist as this is the best way of detecting conditions early and properly treating them.  Women should have a proper diet these days.

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