Medical Myths Busted: Can You Get Pregnant On Your Period?
Happy Monday! Monday means it’s time for another medical myth to be busted. This week I’m tackling whether or not you can get pregnant on your period. It seems like this would be an obvious no but it is actually TRUE! Here’s why.
The probability of actually getting pregnant while on your period is low but there is still a small chance. The reason that it is unlikely (but still possible) is that while you have your period your ovulation is probably still a few days away (No idea what ovulation is? Check out my post on the menstrual cycle here to give you the basics).
If you have a shorter menstrual cycle (think every 21 to 24 days) this means you may be ovulating earlier in your cycle and thus overlapping with your period. Sperm can actually live for up to 5 days inside the female reproductive system so having sex on your period could lead you to conceive a few days later in your early ovulation. Having sex later in your period (think day 4 or 5) or right after your period is even riskier because you’re getting closer to your ovulation time and fertility window.
Think of it like an annoying math problem - if ovulation occurs on average around day 14 of your cycle and you have sex on day 5 of your cycle, add the 5 days that sperm can survive = you’re getting very close to your actual day of ovulation and thus a higher chance of getting pregnant.
It’s best to continue to use contraception even while having sex on your period to continue to prevent pregnancy even though the chance of actually conceiving is slim. I also think it’s a great idea for women to get to know their cycle so that whether you’re trying to prevent pregnancy or actually conceive you are familiar with when you may be ovulating. Are you interested in knowing more about tracking your cycle? Let me know!
Image - glamourmagazine.co.uk