Reasons for a Missed Period

Reasons for a Missed Period

If your period doesn’t make its monthly appearance, your first emotion could also be elation if you’re trying to get pregnant, or anxiety if you’re not. But while pregnancy may be a common explanation for a missed period, it’s not the only one: actually, an irregular or skipped period happens to up to a quarter of all women of childbearing age.

There are a variety of reasons why your period might not show up on time — or in the least. Missed-period culprits are often as simple as a shift in your schedule or a bout with illness. However, since an irregular or skipped period also can indicate a more serious underlying medical condition, like thyroid disease or another hormonal imbalance, it’s smart to remain on top of it and, if it persists, catch on verified.

Possible causes of a late or missed period


Many times a late period means exactly what you think: You’re pregnant! Because many of the earliest pregnancy symptoms — including cramps, bloating, nausea, spotting, fatigue, breast tenderness and even food aversions — are often almost like what you’ll experience within the days before menstruation, it are often difficult to inform if your cycle is just off by a few days or if you’re pregnant.

The fastest and easiest method to find out if pregnancy is that the cause of your missed period is to require an at-home pregnancy test. These tests detect human chorionic gonadotropin (better known as hCG, a hormone released during pregnancy) in your urine. Pregnancy tests are most reliable the day after your missed period, but some brands claim to be ready to detect a pregnancy up to 5 days before your period is due.


You already know that stress can trigger a number of unpleasant side effects, like headaches, weight gain, and acne, so it should come as no surprise that it also can affect your cycle. When under physical or emotional stress, your body produces the hormones adrenaline and cortisol. Elevated levels of those stress hormones force the brain to decide which bodily functions are essential and which are nonessential until the anxiety-inducing event is over.

Stress won’t typically cause problems together with your cycle, but occasionally too much stress can cause fluctuations in hormone levels, which could in turn mess together with your body’s timing of ovulation and delay your period.


Certain illnesses, like a cold or the flu, also can stress the body and impact ovulation, and, as a result, your period. If illness around the time of ovulation caused you to skip a period, it’ll likely reappear as normal next cycle.


Your weight can affect your hypothalamus, a gland within the brain responsible for regulating various processes within the body — including your cycle.

Extreme weight loss, low caloric intake, or being very underweight can stress the hypothalamus. this might inhibit your body from producing the estrogen needed to create the lining of the uterus.

On the opposite hand, being overweight or gaining a lot of weight during a short amount of your time can cause your body to supply an excessive amount of estrogen. An overload may end in a few months without ovulation or cause the endometrial lining to overgrow and become unstable, leading to heavy, irregular, or missed periods.

Usually, consulting your physician or gynecologist and gaining a healthy amount of weight if you’re underweight or losing if you’re overweight should help your periods to return to normal.

Excessive exercise

Of course, understanding is good for you. However, once you overdo it (and possibly also restrict meals to lose weight), your body might not produce enough estrogen to finish the menstrual cycle.

Some women — like ballet dancers, gymnasts, and professional athletes — are at greater risk for amenorrhea (missing a period for 3 or more months during a row). But you do not have to be a pro for exercise to mess together with your system. working out excessively without taking in enough calories also can cause disruptions.

Some signs that you’re overdoing it include: extreme or rapid weight loss, decreased physical performance or forcing yourself to figure out through injury, illness, or severe weather. Slowing down a touch and gaining a touch weight if needed should get things back on target.

Change in schedule

Believe it or not, switching things up — as an example, working the night shift rather than the day, or traveling across the country — can throw off your internal body clock, which helps regulate your hormones. Sometimes this leads to a missed or late period, but it should return when your body gets won’t to the change or your schedule goes back to normal.


If you’re breastfeeding, you’ll not get your period a few time, since prolactin — the hormone liable for breast milk production — also suppresses ovulation.

Many moms do not have a period for months (or at all) while breastfeeding. But a lapse in your cycle doesn’t suggest you cannot get pregnant. Remember, ovulation occurs before you get your period. It’s possible for you to ovulate then get pregnant before you ever see your period. Most mothers should see their periods return within six to eight weeks after weaning. If you haven’t gotten your period three months after you stop breastfeeding, ask your doctor.


Probably the foremost common medication to cause menstrual changes is contraception. Hormonal contraceptives like the pill or patchwork by stopping the body from ovulating — and no ovulation means no period. But what that monthly bleeding you’ve got while using one among these methods? What you’re really experiencing is withdrawal bleeding, a “fake” period caused by the drop by hormones once you take the placebo pills in your pack or go patch-free during the fourth week of your cycle.

Sometimes, though, contraception suppresses hormones such a lot that you simply have Very light bleeding or no period in the least during that week off. and a few pills are even designed to prevent your period for an extended amount of your time (three months or more). Other hormonal birth controls, like the Depo-Provera, shot or the IUD, thin the liner of the uterus to such a degree that there could also be no lining to shed monthly.

Emergency contraception also can affect when or if you ovulate, so if you’ve taken it recently you’ll experience a late or skipped period (bring this up together with your doctor).

Some other medications which will cause your period to be irregular include antidepressants, some antipsychotics, corticosteroids, and chemotherapy drugs.

If you’ve recently gone off the pill within the hopes of getting pregnant, you’ll notice that it takes a month or so for your cycle to manage itself — during which case a skipped period might just be your system getting back on target. If you are not sure whether you might be pregnant, however, visit your doctor.

Hormonal imbalance

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) may be a condition where the female sex hormones are out of balance. PCOS can cause cysts on the ovaries and stop ovulation from occurring regularly. additionally, to missed or irregular periods, PCOS also can contribute to excess hair growth, acne, weight gain, and possibly infertility. Your doctor can do a blood test to see your hormone levels if you think that PCOS could also be the rationale for your menstruation problems. If PCOS is that the cause, your doctor may recommend contraception to regulate your periods.

Thyroid disorder

The thyroid gland responsible for your body’s metabolism doesn’t function properly, it can cause abnormal menstrual changes. Hyperthyroidism can cause periods to be lighter and less frequent. Other symptoms include weight loss, rapid heartbeat, increased sweating, and trouble sleeping.

An underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism) can also cause periods to be less frequent but heavier. Hypothyroidism also can cause weight gain, fatigue, dry skin, and hair loss. A blood test can help your doctor determine if you’ve got a thyroid disorder.


The average age of menopause is 51. Anywhere from two to eight years before that, a lady experiences what’s referred to as perimenopause, a period when the body gradually produces less estrogen. During this point, it isn’t uncommon to experiences changes in your cycle — periods may come more or less frequently, be shorter or longer, or be lighter or heavier. But you’ll also likely experience hot flashes and night sweats, sleeping difficulties, vaginal dryness, and mood swings. If you’re concerned about your symptoms, you can check your hormone levels with a blood test.

Though a missed period is often emotional, try to not jump to conclusions until you discover out what’s really happening. A visit to your doctor can help pinpoint the cause, and if you are not pregnant, coax your next period along and obtain things back to normal.

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