Bleeding between periods

Light bleeding between periods is often described as spotting, while heavier bleeding is referred to as breakthrough bleeding.


Bleeding between periods is usually caused by hormonal fluctuations. The bleeding itself is not harmful and often disappears by itself. Causes can include:

  • Change in contraception (common in the first three months)
  • Polyps
  • Fibroids
  • Sexually transmitted infection (STI)
  • Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
  • Stress
  • Vaginal dryness
  • Cancer of the cervix (neck of the womb) or the womb

If you are in doubt as to the cause, do not suffer in silence. Contact your GP. If you think your bleeding is linked to heavy periods, read about how to prepare for your GP appointment here.

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