Nervous about a missed period when you can tell you’re not pregnant? Many people are quick to take a pregnancy test once they miss a period. Truly menstruation stops at conception but there are other culprits other than pregnancy that may be responsible for a missed period. The cause ranges from hormonal imbalances to serious medical condition.
It is normal for a period to be irregular at two different times, which is when menstruation starts, and when menopause starts. When the body is going through these processes, your cycle can become irregular.
This article explains how menstrual period works and possible causes of missed period other than pregnancy. However, be informed that you can miss a period without being pregnant.
Your ovaries release an egg monthly which is called ovulation, and it occurs averagely every 28 days. Your period starts when there is no sperm to fertilize the egg. Absence of menstruation for 3 months above is termed amenorrhea.
Check out few reasons you can experience a late period
Stress can affect the part of your brain (hypothalamus) responsible for regulating your period, disrupt hormonal level. This can result to anovulation and period stops. This eventually can lead to illness that can influence your cycle. You can try some relaxation techniques and possible lifestyle changes to get you back on track.
Hormonal imbalances occur with rapid weight gain or loss. The disruption with your hormones may cause you to miss periods initially, but will be resolved over time. When you weigh 10 percent below what is considered normal for your height, it can possibly change the way your body functions and cause ovulation to stop.
You can miss periods with extreme exercise, most especially people with very little body fat. The term used for this is amenorrhea.
Polycystic Ovary syndrome (PCOS)
This condition that occurs in women causes the body to produce more of androgen, a male hormone. Formed cysts on the ovaries as a result of this imbalance makes ovulation irregular or stop it. Other hormones in the body such as insulin can also get out of balance, leading to insulin resistance, still associated with PCOS. Your physician may recommend birth control or other medications to aid regulation of your cycle.
Increase in Prolactin production
Prolactin hormone is produced in a woman’s body usually during breastfeeding and this stops at menstruation. This is the rationale behind most breastfeeding women who do not menstruate. If you are not breastfeeding and you experience a milky discharge from the nipple, this may signify that your body is making an abnormally high amount of prolactin hormone and you should seek medical help.
Birth Control medications
Birth control pills contain estrogen and progestin, hormones that prevent your ovaries from releasing eggs. You may experience a menstrual cycle change when you go on or off birth control pills. Other types of hormonal birth control measures can also cause missed periods too.
A woman is said to enter menopause when their period is absent for at least 12 months. During the transition to menopause, referred to as Perimenopause, you many experience irregular or missed periods implying that your egg supply is going down.
A late or missed period occurs with an overactive or underactive thyroid gland. The thyroid works by regulating your body’s metabolism which can affect your hormonal level. This can be treated with medications and your period will return to normal.
Individuals living with chronic diseases like celiac diseases and diabetes may experience changes in menstrual cycle. Due to hormonal changes linked to changes in blood sugar, poorly controlled diabetes can result to missed period.
Advice from eDokita
You may benefit from being properly diagnosed by your physician for your late or missed period to determine the cause and discuss your treatment options. Symptoms such as fever, severe pain, nausea and vomiting, unusually heavy bleeding, breast secretions, excessive hair growth requires that you contact a physician right away.