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Can I get pregnant during menstruation?

Is it possible to get pregnant during menstruation? This question is very common and can be answered short or long. Let’s start with the short form.

Yes, it is possible to get pregnant while you are menstruating … but it is very unlikely.

pregnant during menstruationEveryone knows that in order to become pregnant it is necessary to encounter a sperm with the ovum, a fact that can only occur during the fertile period of the woman. Therefore, it is logical to imagine that it is impossible for a woman to become pregnant at the time of her menstruation, once the menstrual period is not part of the fertile period of the cycle.

The reasoning above is correct, but the conclusion is wrong. Yes, it is possible to get pregnant if you have unprotected intercourse during menstruation. It is not common or very likely, but it is by no means impossible.

Therefore, the short and simple answer to the question that gives rise to the title of this article is: Yes, it is possible to get pregnant while you are menstruating.

Let us then go to the long answer, which will explain why, although it seems illogical, it is possible to get pregnant during menstruation. In the course of the text we will try to answer and explain the following three questions:

  1. Can I get pregnant while I’m on my period?
  2. Can I get pregnant just after the end of menstruation?
  3. Can I get pregnant just before the start of the next menstruation?

Before proceeding with the explanation, let’s talk superficially about the fertile period and fertilization, which is the time when the sperm meets the ovum.

In this article, we will talk about the fertile period just enough so we can explain the risks of getting pregnant during menstruation. If you are looking for more detailed information about the fertile period, access the following links:



Attention: this text only makes sense for women who do not use hormonal contraceptives. If you use the contraceptive pill, there is no risk of pregnancy during the menstrual cycle, including at the time of contraception.


It is unlikely, but there are special situations where possible. These are the cases that the woman becomes pregnant when she has unprotected intercourse during menstruation.

To see how this is conceivable, we will clarify just 4 ideas:

  • Moment of ovulation.
  • Duration of menstruation.
  • Fertile period.
  • Duration of the menstrual cycle

The menstrual cycle, also called the ovulatory cycle, begins on the first day of your period and ends on the day before the new period. That is, the cycle begins when menstruation goes down in a given month and ends as soon as menstruation returns in the following month.

In most women, the menstrual cycle lasts about 28 to 35 days. But some people may have cycles shorter or longer than this average. Very short or very long cycles are especially common in adolescents and in women who are near menopause.

There are women who have a regular menstrual cycle, with a stable duration for months, while others have irregular cycles, with durations ranging from a month to month.

Moment of ovulation

Regardless of the size of the cycle and its regularity, ovulation usually occurs between 12 and 14 days before the end of the cycle. This means that a woman who had her period after a 28-day cycle, ovulated around the 14th day. Already a woman with a 40-day cycle ovulated around the 26th day, while a woman with a short cycle of 22 days ovulated around the 8th day of the cycle.

As will be seen later, it is women who have a short menstrual cycle that may be technically fertile during menstruation.

Duration of menstruation

The menstruation usually lasts from 3 to 7 days. The blood that the woman loses during menstruation is actually the inner lining of the uterus that is crumbling, stimulated by the hormonal changes at the end of the ovulatory cycle. It is important to note the fact that although you are menstruating, it does not mean that your hormonal cycle is standing to wait for the end of menstruation. Conversely, the hormonal cycle that will lead to the next ovulation was restarted on the first day of menstruation. This means that on the 7th day of your period, your body is already on the 7th day of the ovulatory cycle.

Fertile period

The last information we need to know to close our reasoning is the concept of the fertile period. They call the fertile period the time interval in which it is possible for an unprotected sex to generate a pregnancy.

When the woman ovulates, her ovum is viable to be fertilized only for 12 to 24 hours, reaching a maximum of 36 hours in some cases. However, this does not mean that the fertile period lasts only 12 to 36 hours. Sperm is able to survive in the female reproductive system for 3 to 5 days (there are some that remain viable for 7 days, but this is not common). This means, therefore, that the fertile period includes 5 days of the life of the sperm plus the 24 hours of the ovum, ie, the fertile period is generally 6 days in total.


If you understood everything explained so far, you can imagine why a woman can get pregnant by having intercourse during menstruation. We conclude our explanation with some examples.

Imagine a woman with a short menstrual cycle of only 24 days. If your cycle has 24 days, this means that ovulation occurs around the 10th day of the cycle. As we know that sperm usually remain viable for 5 days inside the woman’s body and the egg survives 24 hours, this means that any unprotected sexual intercourse that occurred between the 5th and 11th of the cycle can lead to pregnancy. Therefore, if a woman’s menstruation lasts from 5 to 7 days, it is possible that she will get pregnant if she has sex in the last 2 days of your menstrual cycle (5th to 7th day of the cycle)

Therefore, the shorter the menstrual cycle and the longer the menstruation time, the greater the chances of a woman becoming pregnant during the menstrual period. Women with a menstrual cycle of fewer than 24 days and menstruation time of more than 5 days are the ones with the greatest risk.

It is important to remember that most women do not have such short cycles or long periods. A woman with a 28-day menstrual cycle and 5-day menstruation time can not become pregnant during menstruation because ovulation occurs around the 14th day of the cycle and menstruation lasts only until the 5th day. Even if this woman has sex on the last day of her period, the sperm will only survive until the 10th day of the cycle. When ovulation arrives, there is at least 4 days when there will be no viable sperm to fertilize the ovum.


It is very unlikely, but it is not impossible. If a woman has a very short cycle, around 20 or 21 days in duration, her ovulation occurs around the 6th day of the cycle, which allows a sexual relationship on the first day of menstruation to provide viable spermatozoa at the moment Of ovulation.

This situation is extremely unusual, but, again, it is not impossible.


As we have seen, although low, how much closer to the end of menstruation, the greater the risk of an unprotected relationship generating a pregnancy. Along these lines, a sexual relationship that has happened after the end of menstruation displays significantly more hazard than a relationship that has happened in the menstrual period. What’s more, this hazard increments exponentially with the course of days. A relationship that has happened 3 days after the finish of the period has more hazard than a past relationship, which thus has more hazard than a relationship that occurred on the day after the finish of monthly cycle.

Again, the shorter the cycle and the longer the menstruation time, the greater the risk of pregnancy when you have an unprotected relationship shortly after the end of the menstrual period.+


This situation is the most improbable of all. In order for a sexual relationship that occurred 1 or 2 days before the period to fall to lead to a pregnancy, a simultaneous occurrence of several unlikely situations, such as very early ovulation and high-quality sperm, would be necessary to generate viable spermatozoa during At least 7 days. It is very unlikely.

Related: Factors that increase fertility problems

Subsequently, the most secure period for having unprotected sex happens in the time interim between the time the ovary degenerates and ends up noticeably unviable (around 24 to 36 hours after ovulation) and the onset Of the following menstrual period. This implies a wellbeing interim of 10 to 12 days in ladies with a menstrual period around 28 days.

The problem is that most women do not know when they ovulate and do not feel sure of the exact day that the next menstruation will go down. In this way, it is very difficult to know when these 10 days are safer for.

Also Read: 10 fun situations that only the first parents will recognize

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