Concerned about a missed period but certain you’re not pregnant? Missed or late periods occur for a variety of reasons other than pregnancy. Hormonal abnormalities to significant medical disorders are common causes.
There are two other occasions when your period is likely to be irregular: when it first begins and when the menopause transition begins. Your cycle may become erratic while your body goes through the shift.
Most women who have not achieved menopause have their period every 28 days. A healthy menstrual cycle, on the other hand, can occur every 21 to 40 days. If your period falls outside of these ranges, it could be due to one of the following factors.
Chronic stress can disrupt your hormones, disrupt your daily pattern, and even impact the area of your brain that regulates your period, the hypothalamus. Stress can cause illness or rapid weight increase or loss over time, all of which might disrupt your cycle.
If you suspect that stress is interfering with your menstruation, try practicing relaxation techniques and adopting lifestyle adjustments.
Chronic stress can have an impact on other health concerns, so resolving it yourself or with the support of a medical expert is a vital aspect of caring for your overall well-being.
Low body weight
People with eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa or bulimia, may have irregular periods. Excessive weight loss might cause irregular periods and perhaps end your cycle entirely. This is because a lack of body fat might cause ovulation to be delayed.
Getting treatment for your eating issue and regaining appropriate body fat can help you return your cycle to its original length.
Extreme exercisers, like as marathon runners, may develop cycle anomalies as well.
Living with a high body weight can induce anomalies in hormone production in the same way that living with a low body weight can produce alterations in the hormones.
An excess of estrogen, which plays a crucial role in reproduction, can be produced by the body as a result of obesity in excessive amounts. An excessive amount of estrogen can create disruptions in your menstrual cycle and possibly cause you to completely stop having periods.
If your doctor has decided that your obesity is a cause in your late or skipped periods, they may recommend that you reduce weight by making adjustments to your lifestyle, such as concentrating on meals that are high in nutrients and engaging in physical activity.
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
The disorder known as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) is one that leads to an increase in the amount of testosterone that is produced by the body. As a consequence of this hormonal disproportion, cysts may develop on the ovaries. Ovulation may become erratic or may cease entirely as a result of this condition.
Alterations can also occur in the levels of other hormones, such as insulin. This is because insulin resistance, which is frequently associated with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
The relief of symptoms is the primary goal of treatment for PCOS. In order to assist in the regulation of your cycle, your physician may prescribe birth control or another drug.
When you start or stop using birth control, you can notice a difference in your menstrual cycle. The hormones estrogen and progestin used in birth control pills suppress your ovaries’ natural egg-releasing processes, thereby preventing pregnancy. After you stop taking the pill, it may take up to three months for your cycle to return to normal before it becomes predictable again.
Other kinds of contraception, such as those that are implanted or injected, are also capable of causing women to skip their periods.
Chronic diseases, such as diabetes and celiac disease, can also disrupt your menstrual cycle. Changes in blood sugar are linked to hormonal changes, so although it is uncommon, uncontrolled diabetes can cause your period to be irregular.
Celiac disease causes inflammation in the small intestine, which may prevent your body from absorbing important nutrients. This can result in irregular or missed periods.
Other chronic conditions that may lead to cycle irregularities include:
- Cushing syndrome
- congenital adrenal hyperplasia
- Asherman’s syndrome
Premature ovarian insufficiency (POI)
Between the ages of 45 and 55 is when the menopause often begins for women who have vagina. Those who begin having symptoms around the age of 40 or earlier may be going through premature ovarian insufficiency (POI), which is another name for early natural menopause.
A woman in the United States may have POI if she is one of the approximately 1 percent who do. This syndrome can be caused by the surgical removal of the ovaries; however, other factors, such as hereditary abnormalities and autoimmune problems, can also play a role in its development.
If you are under the age of 40 and have not had a period in at least three months, talk to your primary care physician about getting tested for polycystic ovary syndrome (POI) and getting treated for it.
A thyroid gland that is either hyperactive or underactive could potentially be the cause of a period that is late or missed entirely.
Since the thyroid is responsible for regulating the metabolism, hormone levels might also be altered when it malfunctions. In most cases, thyroid problems can be remedied with the use of medicine. After finishing therapy, it is likely that your menstruation will resume to its regular cycle.
When you should visit your physician.
If your periods seem to be irregular, or if you’ve missed a period but you’re certain that you’re not pregnant, it’s a good idea to talk with your doctor as soon as possible. There are a number of conditions and reasons that could be causing the issue, and it’s important to rule out any other possibilities first.
Your primary care physician is the best person to provide an accurate diagnosis of the cause of your late or missed period and to discuss the available treatment options with you. Maintain a log of the changes that occur in both your menstrual cycle and any other aspects of your health if at all possible. They will be able to arrive at a diagnosis with the help of this.
If you have the following symptoms, contact a doctor immediately.
- unusually heavy bleeding
- severe pain
- nausea and vomiting
- bleeding that lasts longer than 7 days
- bleeding after you’ve entered menopause and have not had periods for at least a year
Each individual’s menstrual cycle is distinct in its own right, just as each person is unique. The average length of a cycle is 28 days, however the number of days in a cycle can range anywhere from 28 to 40.
Occasional cycle irregularities can be caused by a wide range of factors, including chronic stress, weight loss or gain, changes in body composition, and stopping or beginning the use of birth control.
It is recommended that you consult your physician as soon as possible if you have observed that your menstrual cycle has become irregular in the recent past or if you have missed a period despite being absolutely certain that you are not pregnant. The sooner they are able to arrive at a diagnosis, the sooner you will be able to begin the process of getting your cycle back under control.