Light period = Pregnant?

Originally Published: May 1, 1994 - Last Updated / Reviewed On: December 11, 2008
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Is it possible to be pregnant even after you have had your period (if it was VERY light)? I read this somewhere.

—Am I or am I not?

Dear Am I or Am I not?,

The only way to know for sure if you are pregnant is to take a pregnancy test, but there are a number of early indications of pregnancy. A lighter or shorter period than usual is one of these. Other indications include:

  • completely missing a period
  • swelling, tenderness, or tingling in the breasts (about two weeks after conception)
  • frequent urination
  • fatigue
  • nausea or vomiting (morning sickness)
  • feeling bloated or crampy
  • increased or decreased appetite
  • changes in digestion (constipation or heartburn)
  • mood changes

If a woman is pregnant, usually more than one of these symptoms will be present. In other words, a light period one month may or may not mean that one is pregnant, especially depending upon whether or not there has been unprotected intercourse during that month.

If you think you or someone you know may be pregnant, you can make a pregnancy screening appointment 7 to 10 days after unprotected intercourse by calling Primary Care Medical Services at x4-2284 or by logging on to Open Communicator. During your appointment, you will be given a pregnancy test and and the provider will discuss your results and options, including contraception. If you are a student who has paid the Health Services Fee, which covers on-campus services through the Health Services Program, you will not need to pay anything additional for the pregnancy screening and other services. If you're not at Columbia, you can get a pregnancy screening at your local Planned Parenthood or Department of Health clinic.

Hope this information helps!