Ladies, Let's Answer This Today: Can You Get Pregnant On Your Period?

The short answer is yes, you can.

The long answer is a little more complicated.

As Dr. Alyssa Dweck, author of The Complete A-Z For Your Vrecently explained it to Hello Giggles:

The chances of getting pregnant while you have your period are low; it really depends on your own cycle.

"Not all vaginal bleeding is your period," Dr. Dweck explained. "If you’re on your period and your uterine lining is shedding, the answer is you’re not going to get pregnant."

However, if you have irregular periods you still may be able to get pregnant.  Dr. Dweck said there a range of factors—including birth control, hormonal imbalances, thyroid irregularity and vaginal infections—can cause women to bleed even when they’re not menstruating.

For example, she said, many women spot when they ovulate or throughout their cycle when they use hormonal IUDs.

The take-away? If you're bleeding it might not actually be your period, so your chance of getting pregnant will increase.

If you're not looking to get pregnant in the near future, Dr. Dweck recommended getting to know your own body—as well as using a reliable form of contraception every time you have sex.

"It’s really helpful to get to know your own cycle," she said. "If you have your period every 28 days you can predict exactly when you're ovulating."

LISTEN: This woman has an IUD. And she wants to tell us all about it. (Post continues below.)

"But if you’re someone with really erratic bleeding, you can’t really know if your bleeding is due to an egg not being fertilized or something else," Dr. Dweck instructed. "It might be unsafe to have sex during that time."

This post originally appeared on Mamamia, Spring.St's Australian sister site. You can read it here.