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How Should I Count My Bleeding Beyond Fifteen Days?

Answered according to Shafi'i Fiqh by Seekersguidance.org

Question: A few years ago, I discovered that I had uterine fibroids. These fibroids have since increased in number and size and cause an increase in period heaviness and then spotting. Currently, my period (plus spotting) lasts 17-21 days. When I thought it was all period, I would start praying after day 15. Is this correct? If not, when should I start praying, and how should I calculate my missed prayers?

Answer:

Assalamu alaykum,

Thank you for your question. I pray that your fibroid situation improves and that your period gets shorter and lighter; this cannot be easy at all. Please consider exercising and cutting out sugar, if you are not already because these have an effect on improving one’s period from what I have seen.

Continuous Bleeding

When one bleeds continuously without a break, beyond 15 days, one applies the ruling of “Tamyeez al-Dam,“ meaning distinguishing blood. In this case, you should note the color, thickness, and smell of the blood throughout the fifteen days and determine when one of its characteristics change or simply when it goes from strong to weak.

Determining the Weak Color

For example, your period might be 5 days red, 6 days brown, and 5 days yellow. In this case, because the last weak color is the color that continued beyond the 15th day, you will consider all the yellow as istihada. You will again consider it istihada at the outset of yellow the next month.

If your weak color starts after the 15th day, then your first 15 days are all period, and your istihada is after the 15th. You should get accustomed to writing all this down.

Praying As One In Istihada

So for your next month, note when the weak color starts, then take your ghusl and pray as someone in istihada or chronic annulment of ablution. The details are here:
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/shafii-fiqh/how-does-one-purify-themselves-when-suffering-from-chronic-penile-leakage-shafii/

Makeup Prayers

Once you have established the method of praying correctly, you should sit down and estimate how many periods went over fifteen days, and how many days the weak color might have been. If your period stopped within fifteen days, there would be no makeup prayers. See this link for estimating the number:
https://seekersguidance.org/answers/hanafi-fiqh/estimating-the-number-of-makeup-prayers/

May Allah give you tawfiq don’t hesitate to follow up with any questions or clarifications.

[Ustadha] Shazia Ahmad

Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadha Shazia Ahmad lived in Damascus, Syria for two years where she studied aqidah, fiqh, tajweed, tafseer, and Arabic. She then attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she completed her Masters in Arabic. Afterward, she moved to Amman, Jordan where she studied fiqh, Arabic, and other sciences. She recently moved back to Mississauga, Canada, where she lives with her family.

This answer was collected from Seekersguidance.org. It’s an online learning platform overseen by Sheikh Faraz Rabbani. All courses are free. They also have in-person classes in Canada.

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