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Nifas – Postnatal Bleeding

Answered as per Hanafi Fiqh by Qibla.com

Answered by Shaykh Sohail Hanif, SunniPath Academy Teacher

In the first link below this email [1], it says that the labouring women should pray until most of the baby is out. How is this possible when she would be bleeding at the time of her child’s birth? That is, women bleed for about 40 days after the birth of the baby, and I did not think that salat was possible at this time since it’s similar to/same as menstruating? I believe we would make up these salats, but we obviously cant pray when we are bleeding?

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful

In the Name of Allah, Most Merciful & Compassionate

Assalamu alaykum

A woman in post natal bleeding (nifas) is under the same restrictions as a menstruating woman, namely she is not to pray, fast or have sexual relations with her husband. This period of nifas commences once half of the baby exits. Before this, any bleeding seen is to be considered abnormal uterine bleeding (istihada) and does not prevent one from prayer and fasting; rather this bleeding has the same rules as bleeding from anywhere else on the body, namely that it is impure and nullifies ablution. Should the bleeding persist to the end of a prayer time, however, then one is to perform ablution and pray even if one continues bleeding as one is excused due to ones difficult circumstances.

One may therefore pray in the period prior to childbirth even if one has continuous bleeding as one is excused during continuous bleeding from the normal rules of purification. One’s ablution would not be nullified by the bleeding and nor would one be obliged to wash the blood from one’s clothing if the clothing would just become bloodied again after washing. One’s ablution would, however, be nullified by the entry of the next prayer time, and one would have to renew one’s ablution to be able to pray in the new prayer time.

As mentioned in the link provided in the question, if one is unable to perform the ritual ablution one may perform tayammum.

And Allah knows best.

Sohail Hanif


This answer was indexed from Qibla.com, which used to have a repository of Islamic Q&A answered by various scholars. The website is no longer in existence. It has now been transformed into a learning portal with paid Islamic course offering under the brand of Kiflayn.