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Black Period Blood: What It Means and Is It Normal?

You’re capable of taking on practically anything, but seeing black period blood will make anyone’s heart skip a few beats. Your first thought might be, “What is wrong with me?” But we can assure you that it’s probably standard procedure for your body. 

Changes in the color of your period blood are normal and can happen at any time during your menstruating life. Here’s what it means if your period flow has suddenly gone goth. 

Black Period Blood Symptoms

You’ve experienced it: You’re using the restroom or changing your period protection when you see what looks like deep, dark, coffee-grind colored blood. Even though you might think your insides are dying, it can all be part of a healthy period. 

Black period blood is usually experienced on lighter days, toward the beginning or end of your period, and it can sometimes be accompanied by clots. The color may range from deep red or purple to dark brownish-black. 

What Does Black Period Blood Mean?

Usually, black period blood indicates your flow is a little slower than on your heavier days. You may have black period blood at the very beginning of your cycle. If it seems your body takes a day to get your period going, you may experience spotting that looks black.

If you have a few spots of black period blood before your period, you may have premenstrual discharge. This, too, is usually very normal.  

You can also experience black period blood toward the end of your cycle. When you are bleeding less, your flow doesn’t exit your vagina as quickly. When this happens, it has more time to be exposed to oxygen. The oxygenation process turns your flow to darker colors, like deep red, brown, and eventually black. 

Black period blood is usually considered “old” blood because it takes longer to come out. As your flow slows, it changes to a darker color. 

Is Black Period Blood Normal?

Black period blood looks scary, but it’s usually no reason to panic. If you have other symptoms like the ones below, you should make an appointment to see your doctor. 

  • Foul Odor, Itching, Burning, or Abdominal Pain and Fever: Rarely, black period blood can indicate something lodged in the vagina. It’s possible that you forgot to take out a tampon (it happens). 

    If you have these types of symptoms, seek medical attention immediately. You could place yourself at risk of toxic shock syndrome if you don’t have the object removed.

  • Vaginal Conditions: You have a medical condition that changes the way your flow exits your body. Some types of congenital conditions of the vagina can change the way your flow exits your body or can block your flow altogether. 

    If you don’t have a cervix (a condition called cervical agenesis) or have had surgical complications, you may experience black period blood because your flow is having a difficult time exiting your vagina. 

  • Irregular Bleeding After Sex: You have black period blood accompanied by irregular bleeding after sex and spotting between your periods. Rarely, black period blood can be an indication of cervical cancer. If you are experiencing pain and frequently bleed after sex, you should see your doctor. 

    You may also notice that you spot more between cycles. Spotting can be normal in some instances, but it is best to see your doctor if you have other symptoms. 

What To Do About Black Period Blood

Lucky for you, you don’t need to take any special measures to deal with black period blood. Simply notice your body’s ability to take care of itself, even on days when your flow is slowing down. 

Black period blood isn’t dirty and doesn’t mean you have an infection. It’s a normal, healthy part of your cycle. 

You can get long-lasting protection during your cycle from Rael. We create products that help you honor your body every day of the month. Using Rael’s Reusable Menstrual Cup can give you up to 12 hours of protection with zero leaks. The best part: It’s reusable every month for up to 10 years with proper cleaning and storage. 

Get Rael

Do you have black period blood? No worries. You’ve got all the great period protection products from Rael to keep you comfortable, confident, and protected against leaks. 

You can have an empowering period every month with the best period care solutions from Rael


Sources:

Toxic shock syndrome - Symptoms and causes | Mayo Clinic 

Cervical Agenesis | Texas Childrens.org 

Cervical cancer - Latest research and news | Nature
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