7 Reasons You Might Miss a Period

7 Reasons You Might Miss a Period and When to See Your Doctor

Are you wor­ried about a late peri­od, but you know you’re not preg­nant? There are many rea­sons for a late or missed peri­od that have noth­ing to do with preg­nan­cy. Caus­es can be relat­ed to issues such as hor­mon­al imbal­ance, chron­ic health con­di­tions and perimenopause.

A nor­mal cycle for most women can range from 24 to 38 days. You know your body, so if you have con­cerns, talk to your Duly provider. They can dis­cuss them with you and treat the under­ly­ing issue. 

Here are 7 rea­sons you might miss a period.

1. Poly­cys­tic Ovary Syn­drome (PCOS)

PCOS affects 5 mil­lion (or 6 – 12%) US women of repro­duc­tive age. If you’re diag­nosed with PCOS, you have more male hor­mones called andro­gens than you should. This can stop your body from releas­ing eggs dur­ing ovu­la­tion and can cause irreg­u­lar peri­ods — as well as oth­er symp­toms like excess hair growth on the face and body, hair thin­ning, skin issues and weight gain. Female fer­til­i­ty issues are most often due to PCOS. 

An endocrinol­ogist treats PCOS. If you learn that your missed peri­ods are con­nect­ed to PCOS your provider will dis­cuss treat­ment options. They can give you med­i­cine so your body can ovu­late. There are also treat­ments for acne and hair growth. 

2. Over­weight and Obesity

Obe­si­ty is a chron­ic health con­di­tion. In the US, near­ly 3 in 4 adults age 20 or old­er are either obese or over­weight. If you’re con­sid­ered obese, you may notice irreg­u­lar peri­ods. A hor­mone imbal­ance can affect your cycle when you’re obese. Some­times this imbal­ance is the result of anoth­er under­ly­ing health con­di­tion, like PCOS.

If you’re diag­nosed as over­weight or obese, you and your provider will work togeth­er to find a treat­ment plan that may include con­sum­ing less calo­ries, exer­cis­ing, and estab­lish­ing healthy lifestyle changes. The ulti­mate goal is to reduce all obe­si­ty-relat­ed com­pli­ca­tions and improve your qual­i­ty of life. 

Have you been miss­ing your peri­od, but you’re not preg­nant? Missed or late peri­ods can be a sign of a hor­mon­al imbal­ance or a med­ical con­di­tion. Sched­ule an appoint­ment with a Duly provider.

3. Los­ing too much weight

Just like gain­ing too much weight can affect your peri­od, it’s the same with los­ing too much weight. Your peri­od may stop or become irreg­u­lar. This may hap­pen if you stop ovu­lat­ing because you’ve lost too much weight.

If you’re wor­ried about your weight, talk to your provider. They will ask ques­tions and may run some tests to learn more about your weight loss. Being under­weight can cause health com­pli­ca­tions, so they will help you get to a healthy weight. 

4. Stress

Some­times a late or missed peri­od has to do with stress. If work or recent life events are caus­ing more stress than usu­al, that may be why your peri­od hasn’t shown up. High lev­els of stress can some­times cause your peri­od to stop or become irreg­u­lar. If this is some­thing you’re con­cerned about, your provider will be able to offer sug­ges­tions like coun­sel­ing, exer­cis­ing, or prac­tic­ing self-care.

5. Thy­roid Disease

Some­times miss­ing your peri­od could be a sign of a seri­ous med­ical con­di­tion like Thy­roid dis­ease. Thy­roid dis­ease is when your body makes too much or too lit­tle of the thy­roid hor­mone. Thy­roid hor­mones con­trol lots of activ­i­ties in your body — from how quick­ly you burn calo­ries to how fast your heart beats. In some cas­es, some women’s peri­ods stop for sev­er­al months because the body’s immune sys­tem attacks the thy­roid, pre­vent­ing it from mak­ing the hor­mones need­ed to con­trol your period. 

The good news is that there are treat­ments. You may be pre­scribed thy­roid hor­mone pills, which will give your body what it needs to func­tion properly.

6. Endometrio­sis

Endometrio­sis is when the tis­sue that nor­mal­ly forms in the lin­ing of the uterus — and sheds dur­ing your peri­od — is found on the out­side of your uterus or even on oth­er organs. Missed peri­ods can some­times be a symp­tom of endometrio­sis. Treat­ment options may include med­ica­tion, surgery or both. Your provider will dis­cuss the right option for you. Although there is no cure for endometrio­sis, ear­ly diag­no­sis can help you man­age your symp­toms and slow the growth of implants.

7. Menopause

Menopause — when your peri­od stops com­plete­ly — doesn’t hap­pen imme­di­ate­ly. There’s a tran­si­tion­al peri­od for most women between the ages of 45 and 55. You may expe­ri­ence the symp­toms — includ­ing irreg­u­lar peri­ods — before­hand. This tran­si­tion­al peri­od is called per­i­menopause. If any symp­toms are impact­ing your dai­ly life, treat­ments are avail­able, and your Duly care team is here to sup­port you.

When to See Your Provider

If you’ve missed your peri­od or it’s been irreg­u­lar late­ly, you should make time to share your symp­toms and con­cerns with your provider. They’ll be able to diag­nose the issue and find a treat­ment that’s right for you. You may be anx­ious or a lit­tle wor­ried, but it’s okay to feel that way, our Duly providers are here to help. Sched­ule an appoint­ment with a Duly obstet­rics and gyne­col­o­gy provider today.

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  • I enjoy being an OBGYN because of the connections I form with my patients. Caring for a woman through a pregnancy, routine health maintenance, and menopause is a treasured relationship. Through a patient centered model of care, I hope to provide excellent medical care for your needs. I believe women are the key to healthier future. If I can make an impact on a women's life in some small way I hope she can take and share that with her family and friends.