Al-Dima' al-Thalatha

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Al-Dimā' al-Thalātha or the Three Bloods (Arabic: الدماء الثلاثة) are the blood of Hayd, Nifas and Istihada that flow out of women's body. According to Islamic jurisprudence, some acts of worship, such as salat, fasting, hajj, presence in masjid and also having sexual intercourse is forbidden during hayd or nifas. After that the flow of these two kinds of blood has stopped, the female should preform ghusl. Istihada is not a barrier to performing acts of worship; however, in order to perform them, she has to make ghusl or wudu in certain conditions.

The Three Bloods

Based on Islamic rulings, vaginal discharge of blood is divided into three types, which are called al-dima' al-thalatha.[1] This subject is mostly discussed under the topic of tahara (purity) in Islamic jurisprudential sources. In the texts of Islamic practical laws, it is presented under the topic of "Compulsory Ghusls."

Differences between These Kinds of Blood

  • Hayd (menstruation) is the blood that flows out of a woman's womb after puberty on a monthly basis. This blood is usually dark, thick and warm, and flows out with irritation. The woman during hayd is called "ha'id."[2]
  • Nifas (postnatal bleeding, lochia) is the blood that flows out of a woman's body during and after childbirth.[3] The woman during nifas is called "nufasa'."
  • Istihada (irregular vaginal blood discharge) is every kind of blood that flows out of a woman's womb that is not hayd, nifas or is not due to injury or loss of virginity. This blood is cold, yellowish and thin, and flows out without gush or irritation. A woman during istihada is called "mustahada."

The amount of blood that is discharged during istihada varies according to people and conditions; thus, it is divided into three types: "al-istihadat al-qalila" (little), "al-istihadat al-mutawasita" (medium) and "al-istihadat al-kathira" (excessive).[4]


  • The acts or worship that are subject to tahara, such as salat, fasting, tawaf, i'tikaf, presence in masjid, presence in the holy shrines of the Prophet (s) or the Imams (a) and reciting suras that contain the verses of compulsory sajda, is not accepted from women during hayd or nifas.[5]
  • A woman whose flow of blood of hayd and nifas has stopped must perform ghusl or tayammum before adhan al-fajr for fasting and if she do not deliberately perform ghusl or tayammum, her fasting is void.[6]
  • Reciting the Qur'an, except for the suras that contain the verses of compulsory sajda, is permissible for a woman who is seeing one of these kinds of blood.[7]
  • One is not allowed to perform salat while there is an amount, even very little, of these kinds of blood on her/his clothes or body.[8]
  • Having vaginal intercourse with a ha'id or nufasa' is forbidden.[9]
  • Having anal intercourse with a ha'id or nufasa is either haram, according to some faqihs, or highly disliked, according to others.[10]


  1. Hāshimī Shāhrūdī, Farhang-i Fiqh, vol. 3, p. 652.
  2. Hāshimī Shāhrūdī, Farhang-i Fiqh, vol. 3, p. 393.
  3. Yazdī, al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā, vol. 1, p. 639-640.
  4. Hāshimī Shāhrūdī, Farhang-i Fiqh, vol. 1, p. 420.
  5. Yazdī, al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā, vol. 2, p. 602-604.
  6. Yazdī, al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā, vol. 1, p. 565.
  7. Yazdī, al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā, vol. 1, p. 603.
  8. Yazdī, al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā, vol. 1, p. 214-215.
  9. Yazdī, al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā, vol. 1, p. 605.
  10. Yazdī, al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā, vol. 1, p. 605-606.


  • Hāshimī Shāhrūdī, Sayyid Maḥmūd. Farhang-i Fiqh muṭābiq-i madhhab-i Ahl al-Bayt. Qom: Muʾassisa-yi Dāʾirat al-Maʿārif-i Fiqh-i Islāmī, 1390 Sh.
  • Yazdī, Sayyid Muḥammad Kāẓim al-. Al-ʿUrwa al-wuthqā. Qom: Muʾassisat al-Nashr al-Islāmī, 1417 AH.