About two to three tablespoons of blood is average throughout your whole period. But remember – it looks like more than it is. So what might seem like a particularly heavy menstrual flow amount could actually be completely normal. And don’t forget that once you start your periods it takes a while for them to become regular.
Periods are considered heavy if there is enough blood to soak a pad every hour for several consecutive hours. Other symptoms of heavy periods include passing large blood clots during menstruation or finding blood on your clothing or bedding.
Typically, most women bleed for anywhere between 2-7 days. The amount of time you bleed for can vary from cycle to cycle. A long period, where you blood for significantly more than 7 days, is also classed as a heavy period.
Factors that affect the amount you bleed are stress levels, diet, hormone levels, choice of contraception and hereditary reasons. Plus, whether or not you’ve given birth. If you’re worried that you’re experiencing abnormal periods, discuss it with your doctor or school nurse.
Menorrhagia is just a fancy way of saying abnormally heavy bleeding during your period. While this is nothing to worry about in itself, menorrhagia may be caused by something else, such as an underlying condition like haemophilia. If you’re concerned about menorrhagia and heavy bleeding is affecting your life, you may want to talk to your GP.