Idaah means to keep count. therefore in Islam, it is the period after the demise of a husband. and a woman is instructed not to marry in that period.

Period of Idaah

If the women have been divorced before the men have touched her. or enter upon her or have been alone with her. then she does not have any iddah. She is able to marry any other man after the divorce. Whereas, if the man had intercourse with her. then she has to observe the iddah which takes any one of the following:

  • For Pregnant Women:

If the woman is pregnant .then her idaah lasts until her pregnancy. whether it is a long time or a short one. Allah says,

“And for those who are pregnant. (whether they are divorced . or their husbands are dead), their ‘Idaah (prescribed period) is until they lay down their burden.” [al-Talaaq 65:4]

  • If the woman is not pregnant and she is of childbearing age (menstruation). then her idaah will be three complete menstrual cycles after the divorce. regardless of the time between them is long or short. Allah says in the Quran.

“And divorced women shall wait. (as regards their marriage) for three menstrual periods.” [al-Baqarah 2:228]


  • Young or Old Women

If the woman is very young or old. and does not menstruate, then her iddah is three months. Allah says in the Quran,

“And those of your women as have passed the age of monthly courses. for them the ‘Iddah (prescribed period). if you have doubt (about their periods), is three months; and for those who have no courses. [(i.e. they are still immature) their ‘Iddah. (prescribed period) is three months likewise.” [al-Talaaq 65:4]

  • If her periods ceased for a reason. and she can’t menstruate again .because of any reason. then her idaah is three months.
  • If the woman’s periods ceased and she does not know the reason. then scholars say that her idaah will be of a full year. (nine months for pregnancy and three months for idaah).

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