Question: How long should my period last?

  • Health Expert health expert Answer
    Molly O’Shea is a health advocate here to help you with your period.
    Molly O'Shea
  • Mom mom Answer
    Ruth Anne Lemley answers your questions about your feminine care.
    Ruth Anne Lemley
  • Peer peer Answer
    Jamie Villarreal is helping change the way people talk about vaginal care.
    Jamie Villarreal
  • My period lasts 6 days almost every time, but my sister-in-law has a period that only lasts 3 days and my mom would flow for about a week when she had hers. The number of days can vary from person to person but, if you usually flow for 5 days and you only flow for 2, that's an unusual cycle for you. If your period is lasting fewer than 3 days or more than 8 days cycle after cycle, you should talk to your healthcare professional about it. Talk to your mom and sisters, if you have them, about how long their periods are, because this may give you a good sense about how long yours will be. Women in a household tend to cycle together. Bottom line is that period bleeding may only last 2 or 3 days or up to 7 or 8 and still be fine.
  • Good question - in my experience it depends on you and your body. I have chatted this subject up many a time with my girlfriends and there are no two of us exactly alike. I've heard period stories ranging anywhere from 3 days to 7, and how they start, flow, and feel are all dependent on your body. Once you begin having your periods regularly, you'll get a feel for how long your period is going to last. That is a good thing to know, so you can expect what happens each month. If something out of the ordinary does happen, like you're bleeding way too long and heavy, and you're worried, call your doctor or medical professional. That happened to me before, and my doctor helped me realize that it was just stress. So keep track in a journal and remember, if you're worried, it's a good idea to ask.
  • Everyone's period is different. Mine lasts around 4 days. My sister, on the other hand, says hers lasts about 5. I have a friend whose period lasts a full 7 days. See, it really all depends on your body. It should fall into a more defined pattern after a couple of years and you'll better be able see what's average for you.

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You can totally go swimming while on your period.


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It’s perfectly fine to go swimming while on your period. Challenge your friends and see if they know.


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Go ahead and hit the water if you want to. It’s okay to swim while on your period. Challenge your friends and see if they know.

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