Can I Get Pregnant Shortly After My Period?

Reviewed on 9/15/2020

Getting pregnant just after your period is unlikely, but it's not impossible.
Getting pregnant just after your period is unlikely, but it’s not impossible.

Getting pregnant just after your period is unlikely, but it’s not impossible. However, the chances of getting pregnant are low right after the periods compared to a few days or a week in the menstrual cycle:

  • If a woman has sex without using contraception, she may get pregnant at any time during the menstrual cycle, even during or just after the period.
  • There is no absolutely "safe" time of the month when a woman can have sex without contraception and not risk becoming pregnant. However, there are times in the menstrual cycle when women may be most fertile and are most likely to conceive.
  • The fertile days may last for up to 3-5 days after the end of your period. The chances of getting pregnant just after the period depend on how short the menstrual cycle is and how long the period lasts. If periods are long, women may only have a few days left after the period ends before fertile days begin.
  • If the menstrual cycle is short, for example, 22 days, then women could ovulate just days after the period. The longest that sperm can survive in fertile cervical mucus is 5-7 days. So, it may just be possible for women to get pregnant if they ovulate a little earlier than usual.
  • A woman may also get pregnant just after a period if she has an irregular cycle.
Table: Typical menstrual cycles and fertility at each stage
Day of cycle Stage Fertility
1-7 Menstruation Least fertile stage
8-9 Post-menstruation Possible to conceive
10-14 Days around ovulation Most fertile
15-16 Post-ovulation Possible to conceive
17-28 Thickening of uterine lining Less fertile, unlikely to conceive

Is it safe to have sex during periods?

Unprotected sex during periods is not advisable. Having unprotected sex, whether oral, anal, or vaginal, always leads to a higher risk of infection owing to skin-to-skin genital contact. It is often considered to be safe to have sex during periods; however, it may lead to a risk of infection due to vaginal discharge. Yeast infection is the most common infection acquired during period sex. Implementing birth control measures, such as using a condom, may lower the chances of contracting the infection and possible pregnancy chances. However, there are a few common benefits of having protected sex during periods:

  • Period cramp relief: Since the uterus may be shedding its lining, orgasm may relieve the menstrual cramp. The uterine muscles contract and release over time, leading to less muscle tension. Also, sex leads to the release of endorphins, which helps ease body pains, headaches, and discomfort.
  • Better lubrication: One of the most prominent benefits of having sex during the period is that it allows better lubrication. If the vagina is mostly dry while having sex, the menstrual flow can help to enhance the lubrication by acting as a natural lubricant. This contributes to safer and comfortable sex.


Stages of Pregnancy: Week by Week See Slideshow

What are the most common early signs and symptoms of pregnancy?

Many of the signs and symptoms differ from person to person. Below are a few common signs and symptoms that may indicate early pregnancy:

  • Blood or spotting on the panty is one of the early symptoms of pregnancy. The embryo pushes itself into the wall of the uterus (or womb). This causes some light bleeding or spots of blood to appear on the panty.
  • Fatigue or tiredness is a high ranked symptom among early symptoms of pregnancy. During early pregnancy, levels of the hormone progesterone soar, which makes a patient feel sleepy or tired.
  • Patients might find urinating more often than usual. The amount of blood in the body increases during pregnancy, causing kidneys to process extra fluid that ends up in the bladder.
  • Vulva changes are the early signs and symptoms of pregnancy. Change in the color of the vulva and vagina happens because more blood is needed in that area to build the tissue for pregnancy.
  • Breast and nipple changes are an early sign of pregnancy. Hormonal changes might make breasts sensitive and sore. Nipples may become larger and darker as the pregnancy progresses. Women may also notice small, goosebump or pimple-like white areas on their areola, which may be an early sign of pregnancy.
  • Having random food cravings is one of the most common early signs and symptoms of pregnancy. It’s caused by the body craving for what it needs. For example, some women want combinations like fish and ice cream; this could be because the body is lacking protein and sugar.
  • Missed menstrual cycle or period pain is the most common symptom of early pregnancy. If a woman has missed her period by a week or more, there is a chance that she might be pregnant.

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