Many women who menstruate often seek information about their period blood color and other changes. Now what is complicated is that we can’t determine one standard for different women as our bodies function differently. Some women menstruate for just 2 to 3 days and there are some other who have to bear the period cycle for more than a week! The blood color changes as the menstruation time passes. For instance, the periods might start with light red spotting or watery blood to dark red blood on the first day and it indicates the period blood that body produced recently. A bright red color is therefore common in the initial time of the cycle. Thus we can say that a normal period blood is mild red in color with changes only due to various underlying conditions that might or might not be serious.
Changes in the period blood in terms of color and texture aren’t always related to health problems and shouldn’t be taken too seriously unless it persists or happens frequently with other symptoms such as pain, itchiness and swelling in the genitals. Also if the orange period blood is accompanied by a strange odor then it should be evaluated at the earliest.
Orange period blood is a result of the red blood getting mixed with the cervical fluid which gives it an orange color along with red flecks. It can also be a symptom of other infections, especially if experienced frequently with a foul odor and a watery consistency. Tissue in the period blood can also be a reason of orange period blood especially when there is a miscarriage at a very early stage. The tissue is very different from a blood clot. Shedding of the decidual tissue may also contribute in the discoloration or change in the period blood and usually happens in cases of hormonal imbalance. In some of the cases, the normal bright red period blood mixes with the cervical fluid and changes its appearance to orange color.
What causes changes in the period blood color?
In some cases the period blood can be orange simply because it is naturally lighter than normal red color. Women who bleed less often experience orange or light red colored period blood. It can also indicate increase in the proportion of the menstrual flow which is made up by the shedding of the uterine lining instead of blood which also causes discoloration. Another reason could be a possibility of vaginal infections such as mucus or other vaginal discharge. These however aren’t related directly to the period blood but are definitely causing a change in the color. Some other causes are:
- Miscarriage: This is a major reason though rare at the same time. It can also make one experience passing clots or tissue along with heavy bleeding.
- Uterine Fibroids: Fibroids or non cancerous tumor develops within the uterus and are usually asymptomatic. The only sign is passing of blood clots that is more than normal.
- Hormonal irregularities: The two main hormones Estrogen and progesterone are hormones are responsible for regulating the timely shedding of the uterine lining. Any kind of disturbance in their balance will thicken the uterine lining and it further wouldn’t be able to support heavier bleeding. Hormonal balance can also occur due to changes in the weight, medication and other physiological processes.
- Menopause: A lot of women in menopause experience changes in the period blood whenever they menstruate, which isn’t that often. The period blood lightens with age in both color and thickness and experiencing orange or light red period blood isn’t something unusual in menopause.
Orange period blood can also occur along with some other symptoms such as:
- Easily getting exhausted even after a normal activity
- Frequently feeling a dizziness
- Skin turning pale and feeling weak
- Pale fingernails
- Irregularity in the periods
Irrespective of the causes, the most convenient way is to see a general physician or preferably an OB GYN doctor. With the help of symptom analysis and a physical examination they can estimate the seriousness of the situation and start the treatment accordingly. It is very important to report the other symptoms (if any) like pain in the abdomen, cramps, itching or pain in the genitals or pain while urinating. Knowing these symptoms will help the doctor find a more precise problem.
Changes in the normal period patterns is naturally a cause of worry for most of the women but some of the changes are normal and the best way is to relax and let the expert and its job. Even in the case of the orange period blood, which might occur due to several aspects, some of its aspects are absolutely normal and some can be a reason for medical concern.