Why Is My Period Brown, Dark, Light Brown, Clumpy, Causes, Treatment


Why is my period brown at the beginning, first day, at the start could I be pregnant?  Brown period at the beginning of your menstruation can be the first indication of conception and early pregnancy. This brown discharge is caused by implantation bleeding which occurs when the fertilized egg from the fallopian tubes moved to the uterus and it attaches itself to the uterine wall for growth. Continue reading for more on causes of brown discharge instead of periods, before, beginning, after periods, dark brown blood, pregnancy, reasons, what to know, remedies and treatment.

If you notice brown discharge at the beginning of your period and you have been having unprotected sex or you and your partner have been trying to make a baby, you need to take a pregnancy test to confirm if you are pregnant or not. Pregnancy is not the only cause of brown period so it is good to be sure and eliminates possibilities in order to locate the true cause of your brown discharge.

Brown blood before period, begining, dark brown discharge after period
Brown blood before period, beginning, dark brown discharge after period

If at all you feel a lot of pain at the beginning of your periods, you can use essential oils like lavender oil, rose oil or clary sage to soothe your pain by using them to massage your abdomen. According to the American Pregnancy Association, “Only 3 percent of women experienced implantation bleeding as a first sign of pregnancy.”

Why do I have brown discharge instead of periods? Meaning

Brown discharge instead of periods can be as result of blood that took too long to get out of your uterus during your last menstruation. When blood stays stagnant for long it turns light brown or dark brown depending on how long it has been in there. You may also experience brown discharge a few days after menstruation. This is very normal and you have nothing to worry about.

Brown discharge and no period also occur during ovulation in some women. Women who have reached menopause are highly likely to experience brown discharge during their periods.

Brown discharge can also be caused by health issues like pelvic inflammation disease, Dysfunctional uterine bleeding, STDs and the worst being cervical cancer. If you experience brown discharge accompanied by other symptoms, then you need to consult your doctor immediately and seek treatment.

Effects of birth control pills on period

Why is my period brown in relation to birth control pills – The level of progestin and estrogen increase when your body is getting ready for a potential embryo. This causes the uterine wall to thicken.

If the levels of these hormones drop, menstruation occurs. The thick uterine wall is what is shaded off as blood if there is no fertilized egg available for implantation.

  • A drop in the level of progestin and estrogen also causes other symptoms that accompany period, like cramps, bloating, breast tenderness, lethargy, headache or migraine, acne flare-ups, diarrhea, constipation, mood swings insomnia, food cravings, anger, irritability, depression, over sensitivity, anxiety, self-hatred, nervousness, crying for no reason, and extreme emotion roller-coaster.

The birth control pill contains active and inactive hormone pills. Each of them has a special function. Active hormone pills prevent ovulation as well as the lining of the uterus from thickening. Inactive hormone pills however allow for a monthly menstrual period which is usually lighter than a normal menstrual period due to the thin uterine lining.

  • Birth control hormonal pills are capable of interfering with your ovulation and the thickening of uterine wall. This can make you experience very light period that maybe light brown in color. You may also miss your period completely.

Apart from the light periods, the lack of drop of hormone levels makes you not experience premenstrual syndromes like pain, cramping, blotting and mood swings. People who use birth control pills never struggle with premenstrual issues while on their period.

You may also like;

  1. Period while pregnant
  2. Yellow discharge during pregnancy
  3. Pain during ovulation

Dark Brown discharge after period

You may notice dark brown discharge after your period. It is very normal in most cases and no cause for alarm. It is mostly caused by blood that delayed in the uterus during menstruation.

But if you experience dark brown discharge or spotting after period accompanied by other symptoms like rashes and burning sensation in the vagina, you may be having a repeated Yeast Infection or other STDs.

Use of birth control oral contraceptive pills can also cause hormonal imbalance which may lead to brown discharge after period.

Dark brown blood during period

Dark brown blood during period is common in teenagers who have just started experiencing their period or in women who have just reached menopause because of the barrow cervix canal. So if you are within any of this age bracket you should not be worried about your period and wonder,”why is my period brown?”

Brown discharge during period can also be caused by old blood that remained in the uterus from your last period and has now mixed with the fresh blood from your current period.

Brown discharge during pregnancy

Why is my period brown – Normal healthy discharge is usually thin and clear. During pregnancy, your discharge becomes heavier and thicker. If it changes color specially to brown during pregnancy, then you need to get worried.

  • Brown discharge means that your discharge has been stained by old blood that took too long to get out of your uterus while you were still menstruating. Blood turn dark brown as it keeps stagnating in the uterus. You may also experience brown spotting.

Brown discharge during pregnancy can also be caused by irritation of your cervix and uterus. Pregnancy hormones increase blood flow to your cervix and make it super sensitive. When you have sexual intercourse or a pelvic exam, your cervix may get aggravated due to its sensitivity. This can result into a little brown discharge or light spotting. So do not worry about the baby. It is safe.

  • When you are have a few days to go into labor, your mucous plug is destroyed (mucous plug is a glob of mucous that seals off the opening of the cervix during pregnancy). This will cause brown discharge that contains a little blood to come out of your vagina. It is advisable to consult your doctor or midwife when you notice such a discharge. It means that your baby is ready to come out.

Sometimes brown discharge during pregnancy can be an indication of more serious problems with your pregnancy like an impending miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, problems with the placenta or an infection of the cervix or uterus.

  • You need to consult your doctor especially when this brown discharge is accompanied by other symptoms like red spotting or bleeding, gray blood; you experience abdominal cramping or tenderness, rapid uterine contractions, lower back pain.

You need to be vigilant and observe your discharge whether you are pregnant or not. You need to get concerned if you see any changes. Brown blood that is persistent and is accompanied by a very bad smell can be a sign of an infection. Your doctor should be able to diagnose and infection and recommend appropriate treatment. Most bacterial infections are caused by poor hygiene in the vaginal area and can be treated by antibiotics.

Brown discharge instead of periods
Brown discharge instead of periods

Causes of brown period

You may be getting worried and asking yourself, why is my period brown? The good and bad news is that brown period may or may not indicate a serious health condition. However it is important to consult your doctor for a proper diagnosis and seek treatment early. The following are the most common causes of brown period.

1. Ovulation

Why is my period brown – Ovulation is the process whereby mature female egg or ovum is released from the ovaries to the fallopian tube ready for fertilization by a sperm cell. It averagely occurs between 12 and 14 days before your period starts. But this period may fluctuate depending on the number length of your menstrual cycle.

Some women may experience a few days of brown blood coming out of their vagina during ovulation. So before you ask yourself why my period brown, check is your calendar to see if you could be in your ovulation days. This may help you avoid the stressing over the brown vaginal discharge.

2. Menopause

As you approach menopause or reach menopause, the level of your estrogen hormones drop and cause your cervix canal to narrow hence delaying menstruation.

This is why brown period is more common in old women as compared to younger women who still experience normal blood flow during menstruation. Be rest assured that brown period after hitting menopause is very natural in case you were worried and asking yourself “why is my period brown.”

3. Pregnancy

Brown period is an early sign of pregnancy. If you and your partner have been trying to get a baby, you should be happy if you notice brown period and take a pregnancy test just to be sure.

The brown period during conception is called implantation bleeding and is caused by attachment of the fertilized egg to the walls of the uterus. Implantation bleeding can last up to a maximum of 4 days.

4. Enlarged uterus

Why is my period brown-During pregnancy, your uterus usually enlarges in order to accommodate the baby. If it does not manage to get back to its normal size after giving birth, then it may take some time for the menstrual blood to be collected and become clumpy before it is expelled out of your body.

Blood that comes out of an enlarged uterus is likely to be brown in color. So if you are wondering, why is my period brown, after giving birth then just know that your uterus has been enlarged. You can use some natural home remedies like castor oil to reduce the size of your enlarged uterus.

5. Cysts

If a cyst ruptures in your uterus, it affects the thickness and colour of the menstrual blood. Your period will come out brown in colour instead of red. This mostly occurs after giving birth.

6. Endometriosis

Why is my period brown – Endometriosis is a painful disorder whereby tissue that normally lines the inside of your uterus (the endometrium) happens to grows outside your uterus. It affects ovaries, fallopian tubes and the tissue lining your pelvis.

Apart from endometriosis, there is another condition known as Adenomyosis whereby the inner lining of the uterus (the endometrium) breaks through the muscle wall of the uterus known as the myometrium.

It is characterized by menstrual cramps, lower abdominal pressure, and bloating before menstrual periods begins. Both these conditions can cause clumpy and thickened menstrual blood and change their color to brown.

Some amount of blood may also remain in your uterus after you finish menstruating. This blood maybe discharged and it will be brown in color because of oxidation caused by its delay in the uterus. This situation can be caused by stress or emotional disturbances that make the uterine wall thin and delay the discharge of menstrual blood. Clotty blood in the uterus can also cause delay of blood discharge out of the uterus during period. You should n0t be worried about delayed blood discharge

7. Pelvic Inflammatory Disease

Pelvic Inflammatory Disease, PID, is an infection that affects the fallopian tubes, lining of the uterus, cervix, ovaries or the vagina. It causes brown period. It is characterized by pain during sexual intercourse and can even lead to infertility if not treated. This can be an answer to your question of “why is my period brown?”

8. STDs

In case you are asking yourself, “why is my period not red?” and you are sexually active, then you need to worry because you may be having an STD.

Sexually Transmitted Diseases like genital warts, chlamydia and gonorrhea also cause brown period. It is important to visit a doctor and seek medical attention if you notice brown period accompanied by other symptoms of STDs like vaginal rash.

9. Cervical Cancer

Why is my period brown – This is the most dangerous reason for brown period. Cervical cancer is caused Human Papilloma Virus commonly known as HPV. If you notice brown period accompanied by symptoms lie excessive weight loss, pelvic pain, loss of appetite, leg pain, and fatigue, then ensue you visit a doctor for proper diagnosis and start treatment immediately.

10. Medication

Some types of medication like birth control pills oral contraceptive pills or steroids can also cause brown blood menstruation. So if you were asking yourself and wondering, ”why is my period brown?” then you can highly suspect your birth control pills or any steroid that you use.

11. Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding

Why is my period brown – Dysfunctional Uterine Bleeding or DUB is a condition caused by hormonal imbalance. It causes brown period. You need to consult your doctor if you keep getting brown period accompanied by other symptoms lie foul odor, pain or swelling in the vaginal area or a burning sensation.

12. Bacterial Vaginosis

A bacterial vaginosis infection is caused by a weak immune system and poor hygiene in the vaginal area that gives bacteria a ground to breed on. It causes brown period. So every time you ask yourself “why is my period brown?” remember that you may have not been observing hygiene in your vaginal area.

This infection can be treated with the help of antibiotics.

Why is my period brown
Why is my period brown


After you get the answer to your question “Why is my period brown?” you can be able to choose the best treatment method. If your brown period is caused by serious health issues, then your doctor will advise you accordingly on what to do and what kind of treatment to use.

If your brown period is not caused by a serious condition, then you just need to adjust your life style and eat more healthy foods and keep your body well hydrated. Eat food that re rich in vitamins and minerals you should also keep fit and exercise frequently. The following are some life healthy tips;

1. Hormonal Balance

“Why is my period brown?” is a question that most women ask themselves. Hormonal imbalance is a major cause of brown period. You can improve your hormonal balance by using nourishing herbs and supplements. Maintaining a healthy liver helps in filtering toxins that cause excess hormones. Milk thistle is an herb that helps in cleansing your liver.

2. Nutrition and hydration

You may be wondering, “Why is my period brown?”, then you realize that you have not been cautious about of what you eat. Nutrition plays a big role when it comes to having a healthy menstrual cycle and hormonal balance. It will make you have normal periods.

  • You should consume a wide variety of minerals, vitamins, essential fatty acids and antioxidants. Vitamin A, D, E, and iron are good for your body.

Develop a habit of dehydrating your body. You do not have to wait until you feel thirsty in order to drink water. Menstrual flows need to be in liquid form not sticky. This prevents blood from remaining in your uterus after menstruation.

  • Apart from plain water, you can also take freshly squeezed juice during breakfast, lunch and supper. You can even add lemon in your water and sweeten it with honey to give it a taste if you do not have other fruits.

According to Mayo clinic “The adequate intake for women is about 9 cups (2.2 liters) of total beverage a day”.

3. Stress reduction

Why is my period brown – Any kind of stress be it traveling, work stress, family stress, stress about infertility, financial stress can have a massive effect on your menstruation. Stress may imbalance your hormones or weakens your immune system and makes you prone to other illness or bacterial infection.

You can reduce stress by;

  1. You can lock yourself in a quiet room and meditate for sometime
  2. Exercising
  3. Yoga exercises. You can get instructions on You tube
  4. Drinking warm beverage like herbal tea
  5. Getting enough sleep

Adhere to the above tips and you will have a healthy menstruation and you will not bother asking yourself or anyone “why is my period brown?”

Why is my period brown? Below is a video that will also help understand different colors of periods;


  1. http://www.collectivewizdom.com/BrownBloodinYourPeriod-CausesandTop7NaturalRemedies.html
  2. http://www.webmd.com/women/guide/menstrual-blood-problems-clots-color-and-thickness#2
  3. http://www.healthline.com/health/womens-health/why-is-my-period-brown
  4. http://www.whattoexpect.com/preconception/brown-discharge-instead-period/


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