All About Implantation, Implantation Bleeding and Implantation Cramps
by MedPlus Team, August 4, 2020
What is Implantation? | Does Implantation Occur During Pregnancy?
In humans, when the sperms and eggs unite, it is known as fertilization. Fertilization leads to the formation of conceptus. Conceptus is basically the form of an embryo in the uterus in the early stages of pregnancy. The conceptus then adheres to the uterine wall where it gradually develops into a full-grown baby through 9 months. This fixation of the conceptus to the uterus is called implantation and occurs usually after 9 days of ovulation. Implantation is basically a means of development and growth for the embryo where the embryo draws oxygen and nutrients from the mother. So does implantation occur during pregnancy? Yes!
Symptoms and Signs of Implantation
First of all, not every woman who becomes pregnant experiences implantation symptoms. Among those who do, the signs can widely vary. The process of implantation is a very interior and tiny phenomenon which is impossible to be felt physically. However, few among the most commonly noted signs of implantation include:
6) Mood swings
7) Extreme fatigue
8) Vomiting sensation
9) Food aversions/cravings etc.
10) Possible change in body temperature
11) Sore/tender/heavier/fuller/swollen breasts
Implantation bleeding is one among the most noticeable and a close-to-confirmatory sign of pregnancy. Keep reading for full details on this.
What is implantation bleeding? | When does implantation bleeding occur?
Implantation bleeding occurs once the fertilized egg gets implanted to the lining of the uterus. Let us see what this means. Once a woman is pregnant, she stops getting her monthly period. However, even after she stops getting her period, she might discharge a small amount of blood which looks like period blood. This small amount of blood discharge is a result of the fertilized egg attaching itself to the uterus wall; and this blood is called implantation bleeding. So this phenomenon is completely normal and women need not worry on seeing it. No treatment is required.
What does implantation bleeding look like? | Differentiating from Menstrual Bleeding
The tricky part is that this blood may look very similar to menstrual blood. Further, the symptoms during the menstrual cycle and implantation may also be often similar. Hence, it is likely that women get confused about whether they have gotten their regular monthly period or are witnessing implantation bleeding. This could hamper the way they treat their intention to get pregnant. And if this bleeding is confused to be a regular period, it could impact determining the baby’s due date. Thus it is important to know the differences between both. So how to tell the difference? It is not easy to clearly draw a line but here are few hints that might help you get a better understanding of your pregnancy status.
Let us see some key differentiators:
Both phenomenons start off as pinkish or brownish color but menstrual blood soon changes to crimson red.
Implantation cramps (more information on this further below) of are lighter and shorter-lived as compared to the long-lived, intense period cramps.
Implantation bleeding will only shed blood without tissues. So if you see any clots (clots are basically a mix of blood and tissues), then be undoubtedly sure that it is your menstrual cycle.
d) Flow Strength:
It is usually super light like spotting – does not become strong. Whereas a menstrual cycle starts off as spotting but soon turns heavy.
e) Flow Length:
While menstrual cycles last for a minimum of 3 days (3-7 days), implantation bleeding can last for just 1 day (1-3 days).
While menstrual cycles start and progress uniformly to a heavy flow then drop again; implantation bleeding can be inconsistent and unpredictable.
Hopefully, these tips will help you understand your symptoms more effectively. And if you are still unable to judge, you could take a pregnancy test at home for confirmation – which is almost 99% accurate.
What is implantation cramp? What does implantation cramp feel like?
Implantation cramps are usually mild cramping sensations often associated to various sensations such as pulling, itching, pricking, tingling combined with rare or frequent pains. Further, it could involve slight to moderate pain. There is no proven evidence that cramps solely happen due to the process of the conceptus attaching itself to the uterine wall. On the flip side, it is believed that it could be a result of various other side effects that happen during/after the implantation process. However, in either case, the pain happens during the same phase.
When do you experience implantation cramps? |And how long do they last for?
Implantation cramps are another strong sign of the onset of pregnancy and occur typically during the start of the implantation process – or somewhere through the process of implantation. On an average, the implantation process takes about 6-12 days to complete. And once the cramps start, just like implantation bleeding, they usually stay for anywhere between 1 to 3 days. However, this is highly subject to change – and could widely vary from every woman to woman. So if you notice that your implantation cramps are lasting beyond 3-4 days, you might want to consider checking with your doctor depending on the severity of your health.
Where do implantation cramps hurt?
Since implantation happens in the uterus, cramps are experienced in the same region – the lower part of your abdomen and the surrounding areas. It could also translate into lower back pain for some women. However, in all cases, the pain regions are often very similar to the painful areas observed during menstrual cycles.
Does everybody experience implantation cramp?
Not every woman experiences implantation cramps. It is observed that only 30 percent of women experience implantation cramping. And those who do, usually experience mild to moderate cramps. It is deemed to be abnormal if any woman experiences heavy cramps during implantation. So if you experience heavy pains during implantation between two of your periods, then make sure to get medical help.
Implantation cramps vs period cramps
Similar to the difference we noted in implantation bleeding Vs. Menstrual bleeding, implantation cramps are far easier and lighter as compared to menstrual bleeding. Implantation cramps are often coupled with spotting and stay for far lesser time than as compared to menstrual cramps. While menstrual cramps can be extremely painful, implantation cramps are usually manageable and lesser painful.
How to get relief from implantation cramps?
How to ease implantation cramps is a crucial question. Below are some tips on how to do so:
a) Warm bath/shower – hot water is believed to help in easing out the cramps as per medical experts.
b) Hot water bag – giving your painful areas some heat is safe and helpful in reducing pain to a great extent. A hot water bag or a heating pad can be used for this.
C) A basic OTC drug – an over the counter pain relief medicine can help control severe pain
d) Kick stress out – being stressful only increasing pain and discomfort. So make subconscious efforts to be stress-free.
e) Massage time – a gentle massage could help. However, some people prefer space and don’t like to be touched during such a time – so you could choose your best fit.
f) Hydration is crucial – many women do not feel like eating or drinking water while having cramps – however, this is really bad for the body. Fluids really help in easing out the pain.
g) Just swap positions – simply changing positions often may as well help you in easing out the pain.
f) Yoga – practicing simple, light Yoga can also do the trick since it gets your mind and body flowing with blood which alleviates the pain.
Hope these tips and tricks helped you!