Spotting and cramping during period is something all women expect and tolerate. Cramps after period pregnant are possible because you may have early pregnancy discomfort. It is not necessary that all women will experience implantation cramping or pregnancy cramps. But mostly such cramps occur before or near the due date when you conceive.
There are many reasons for cramping before period and during it. But cramps 10 days after period are not normal.
Every month an ovary releases an oocyte for fertilization. The hormone progesterone from egg cysts leads to thickening of the uterine lining. It is also responsible for maintaining the lining if conception occurs.
About 90% of women in the reproductive age experience painful cramps during menstruation.
Implantation cramps are comparatively mild and so remain unnoticed. The cramps during period radiate to lower back, thighs, and legs. The pain is so excruciating that women have to gulp in over-the-counter painkillers or muscle relaxants. Can cramps after period be a sign of pregnancy?
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What causes menstrual cramps?
Cramps during period are because of prostaglandin and uterine contractions. Prostaglandins are chemicals that send pain signal to the brain. They are also responsible for inducing labor. Another class of chemical that releases during period is leukotrienes. They are responsible for inflammatory response. The inflammation of the uterine lining causes pain.
The cervical path is not very wide before pregnancy, and so clots can clog the path and cause pain. Another reason for cramping during period is the presence of fibroids or scars that trap blood inside. The oxygen supply to uterine lining cuts off during menses causing the death of cells. This leads to the disintegration of the lining and bleeding. It is like wringing blood from the uterus.
Cramps after period
Cramping after period for a day is attributed to the final loss of blood. The sloughing of the last layer of endometrium causes cramps after period ended. But some conditions can cause prolonged cramping after period ended.
What causes abdominal pain after menstruation? There are many reasons for cramps and many kinds of cramps. Restricting ourselves to abdominal cramping after period, we will discuss the causes.
What causes cramps after period?
Cramps after period or secondary dysmenorrhea is common event in adult women. Post-period cramps may be because of cysts or any medication. Birth control methods can cause cramps randomly at any time the month. Uterine fibroids and polyps cause a lot of pain.
Cysts torsion is another reason for cramps after period. Cancers of reproductive tract also cause painful spasms. Dysmenorrhoea is the painful menses. This cramping lasts after period because of certain complications in the reproductive organs. Dyspareunia is the pelvic pain felt after period is over. It is painful condition that aggravates after intercourse.
Following are the reasons for post period cramps:
- Uterine fibroids: Any structure inside the uterus that blocks or bifurcates the uterus can cause cramps. This is because the uterus cannot contract due to the fibers stretching in it. Uterine fibrous tissues are abnormal septum.
- Endometriosis: When the tissue of uterus invades other organs, it is Endometriosis. Is sharp pain in ovary after period Endometriosis? Pricking pain and cramps after period can be due to Endometriosis. It is possible that the uterine tissue is invading other parts.
- Endometrial polyps: Polyps are sessile tumor in the uterus. These cause blockage of menstrual blood. They cause painful spasms during and after period. Polyps require surgical procedures for treatment. They can even lead to infertility in women.
- Cysts: Any kind of cysts in ovaries or uterus can cause pain after period ended. A cyst is an undifferentiated mass of cells that reduces the space in womb. Cysts cause pain during menstruation and cramping after period.
- Uterine incapacity: Uterine incapacity is the inability of the uterus to throw out blood during menstrual flow. The remaining blood requires more and more of contractions for expulsion. But the contractions are not enough for throwing it out. Uterine incapacity is the reason for spotting and cramping after period.
- Cervical stenosis: When the cervix becomes narrow it clogs any uterine debris. This causes immense pain as long as the clot of blood doesn’t move out. Cramps week after period can be because of cervical stenosis.
- Hormonal fluctuations: Hormonal imbalance can cause cramping and disturb the menstrual cycle. If your hormonal cycle is not regular, then the phase of menstrual cycle will overlap and cause cramps and pain. The developing oocyte will also not compete, and early ovulation cramps can happen.
- Birth control: All birth control methods except condoms have some side effects. After period when you begin a new course of birth control then you can experience cramping.
- Pelvic inflammatory disease: Any inflammatory disease causes sensitivity of the area. If you have any disease such as PID then you can have cramps after period. Other reproductive tract infections or STDs can cause cramping and bleeding after period.
- Adenomyosis: The opposite of Endometriosis is the growth of uterine tissue inside it. The tissue spreads inside the uterus and suffocates it. This causes pain, bleeding, and cramps. Eventually it can lead infertility. Surgical procedures can treat this condition.
- Ovulation: Every month ovulation occurs on the 14th day of the cycle. Some women have mild cramps during ovulation. It is the reason for cramps 2 weeks after period ended. It is normal and is , in fact, a health sign of fertility. A woman is most fertile during this time.
- Implantation cramps: In rare cases or due to miscalculation implantation cramps can occur after period. If a woman confuses between implantation bleeding and period then she may have implantation cramps after period. Implantation and period have nearly same timing. Ideally implantation should occur before period date. But it has a normal time span to occur between 7-12 days after ovulation. Period occurs about 14 days after ovulation.
- Tubal Pregnancy: Tubal pregnancy is when the implantation occurs in the tubes. This leads to bleeding after period along with cramps. Bleeding a week after period with cramps can be because of ectopic pregnancy. It is extrauterine pregnancy that causes painful spasmodic cramps. It may appear like cramps after period but, it is bleeding due to abnormal pregnancy.
- Early pregnancy cramps: In above case, if the woman had implantation bleeding and period then she will have early pregnancy cramps. Cramps 2 weeks after period ended can be because of early pregnancy. This is when you mistake implantation bleeding for period. Cramps after period pregnant are not possible immediately. There has to be a proliferation phase for formation of uterine lining before ovulation. Conception happens within 24 hours after ovulation. But if it is cramping 2 weeks after period ended then it may be because of early pregnancy.
Can cramps be felt during and after implantation?
The start of pregnancy is not smooth, and every woman has to adjust to long trail of changes. During early pregnancy, two reasons can lead to cramps and discomfort.
- Implantation cramps: When the egg embeds itself in the wall of uterus it secrets substances that can digest the wall. The blood released from capillaries lodges in the tissues and is the cause of spotting.
- Early pregnancy cramps: Surging progesterone causes bloating and hampers digestion during pregnancy. Gastric distress and changing hormones lead to cramps. But when the cramps and spotting in early pregnancy are severe you must consult a doctor.
If you have heavy bleeding and cramping after period, then you may be having pregnancy complication. A chemical pregnancy first feels normal and then starts bleeding. If you have late period and cramps after menstruation, then it may be a chemical pregnancy.
Molar pregnancy is another kind of pregnancy complication where an abnormal tissue develops in place of embryo. Here also you can get heavy bleeding and have cramps.
Why am I still cramping after my period? This may also be because you have already ovulated for the next menstrual cycle. You can have early ovulation if another egg’s maturation begins simultaneously in the other ovary. This can cause cramping after your period. Cramping 10 days after menstruation is mostly because of early ovulation. Ovulation occurs in mid-cycle and thus cramps 2 weeks after period ended are on their right time.
Can you be pregnant and have cramps like period?
Cramps after sex before period is a more probable indicator of pregnancy. But after period cramps can rarely be because of pregnancy. This is because after period is the phase of dry days. The uterus doesn’t have any lining to hold the embryo. In such situation, implantation is not possible. Implantation leads to pregnancy. If that doesn’t occur then cramps after period pregnant is not possible.
But if in rare cases due to the simultaneous maturation of another egg conception occurs then you may be pregnant. Nonetheless, you must wait for a week and see whether the symptoms continue. If you start seeing symptoms of early pregnancy in you, then you must take a pregnancy test. Cramps after period have many possible reasons listed above. You need to observe every change in your body.
How to distinguish implantation cramps and post period cramps?
It is not uncommon for women to confuse between cramps after period and implantation. Once you feel cramps after period, you are pregnant is the first conclusion. However, timing and nature of cramps differentiate post period and implantation cramping.
Implantation symptoms include radiating pain in lower back, vaginal irritation and spotting. But period pain is more persistent, and implantation pain fluctuates. The timing of implantation cramps is before your due date. When you are experiencing cramps 4-5 days before the due date, it is more likely that you are pregnant.
Cramps after period are not reliable indicators of pregnancy. If you can calculate your chances of getting pregnant precisely, then you can infer from them. Otherwise, if the pain gets severe you must consult your doctor.