Women usually lose about 30 to 80 ml of blood during a menstrual period. While it is not possible to measure how much blood you have lost, there are certain signs that may indicate a heavy period. Here are some common indicators:
Duration: A normal menstrual period can last for any time between 2 to 7 days. Any period that lasts for more than that is considered to be heavy. More number of days of bleeding means more blood loss, even if you are not losing a lot of blood in one day.
Flow: Women normally need about 2 to 4 pads every 24 hours. Heavy menstrual flow is characterised by the need to change your pad or tampon frequently, often every one to two hours. If you find that you are soaking through your menstrual products quickly, or using more than 4 to 5 pads or tampons a day, or changing your menstrual cup every few hours, it could indicate a heavy period.
Clotting: Passing some blood clots during your period is normal to some extent. That is because some blood coming out from the uterus tends to clot on its way out through the vagina. However, if you consistently pass clots, particularly ones that are large, it may indicate a heavy period.
Anemia symptoms: Heavy menstrual bleeding can deplete your body’s iron stores and lead to lower hemoglobin levels. Symptoms of low hemoglobin, or anemia, include fatigue, weakness, pale skin, shortness of breath, and dizziness. If you experience these symptoms in conjunction with heavy bleeding, it's important to consult a healthcare professional.
Disruption of daily activities: If your heavy period significantly affects your daily life and hinders your ability to engage in normal activities, such as work, school, or social events, it may be considered heavy.
It's worth noting that everyone's menstrual cycle can vary, and what is considered heavy for one person may be normal for another. If you have concerns about your menstrual flow, it is advisable to consult with a healthcare professional. They can provide a proper evaluation, consider your medical history, and offer appropriate advice or treatment options based on your specific situation.