What should I do if I have mid-cycle (breakthrough) bleeding?

Some mid-cycle or breakthrough bleeding is normal, especially if it’s your first few months on birth control or if you’re taking the progestin-only pill. Additionally, if you don’t take your pill regularly or if you switch your patch or ring irregularly (not at the scheduled time or on the scheduled day), you’re more likely to have mid-cycle bleeding. Generally, the longer and more regularly you take your birth control, the less mid-cycle bleeding you’ll experience.

If you ever experience extremely heavy bleeding, whether its during your period or mid-cycle, you should visit a doctor right away. Extremely heavy bleeding means you are soaking through a tampon or pad every hour for 2-3 hours in a row. If your bleeding isn’t this heavy but you’re also feeling dizzy or lightheaded, you should still see a doctor right away.