What Is Spotting?
If You Recently Had Your First Period And You’re Spotting…
If you started your period in the past year or two, you might have something called an “immature HPO axis.” HPO axis stands for hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian axis — meaning how the hypothalamus (a part of your brain), the pituitary gland, and the ovaries work together to control your menstrual cycle. Basically, what this means is that as your body gets used to having a period, your period might change from month to month — you might go without a period for a month or a few months, your period might last two days one month and seven the next, and you might see spotting in between periods.
Is It Normal To Spot While On Birth Control?
If I’m Spotting Before My Period, Could I Have An Infection Or STD?
Does Spotting Mean You’re Pregnant?
Does Spotting Mean You Have A Cervical Ectropion?
Does Spotting Mean There’s Something Stuck In Your Vagina?
Any foreign object left in the vagina — such as a forgotten tampon, or a condom that slipped off — can also lead to spotting. This will usually be accompanied by other symptoms, such as an abnormal odor or discharge. “I have seen my fair share of forgotten tampons in women who present with abnormal bleeding,” Dr. Linhorst says.
Could Spotting Be A Sign Of Cancer?
Spotting is one symptom of cervical cancer — but if you’ve been getting pap smears regularly and you’re not seeing any other symptoms, that’s probably not be the case. “Guidelines have changed and a pap smear is not recommended every year (though an annual exam is), but I always check when someone last had their pap smear,” Dr. Linhorst says. “In women who are up to date with this, cervical cancer is an unlikely reason for abnormal bleeding.”
When Should I See A Doctor About Spotting?
Although spotting is common, there are cases in which you should see an ob/gyn. “If it is a new symptom and persists, that would be a good time,” Dr. Linhorst says. “And if there are other symptoms associated with the spotting (foul odor, irritation, abnormal discharge), I would certainly recommend being seen.”