Although many women think of pregnancy every time they have a period delay, in reality, this may be due to various issues.
It should be noted that the delay of the period does not always imply something serious. In other words, variations in the menstrual period are not something strange. In fact, they are part of the process.
Possible causes of Period delay
Sometimes, a late period means exactly what you think: you’re pregnant! Because the symptoms of early pregnancy such as cramping, swelling, fatigue and breast tenderness are similar to those that you may experience in the days before your period, it can be difficult to know if your cycle simply “shuts down” a few days or you are pregnant.
The fastest and easiest way to find out if this is the cause of the delay is to opt for a pregnancy test. These tests detect in your urine human chronic gonadotropin, the hormone released during pregnancy. The test is reliable from the second day of delay, and much more reliable when you have been a week.
You already know that stress can have a number of unpleasant side effects, such as headaches, weight gain and acne. This can also affect your menstrual cycle. When you are under physical or emotional stress, your body produces the stress hormones (adrenaline and cortisol).
Elevated levels of these stress hormones force the brain to decide which bodily functions are essential and which are not, until the end of the anxiety-producing event.
The blood flow to the muscles and oxygen to the lungs increase. This is part of the “fight or flight” response that you have probably heard. While others, such as digestion and the reproductive system, can temporarily stop in extreme cases. When the reproductive cycle slows down, so does your period.
3. Thyroid disorder
When the thyroid does not work properly it can cause abnormal menstrual changes. An overactive thyroid ( hyperthyroidism ) can make the periods lighter and less frequent.
Additional symptoms include weight loss, rapid heartbeat, increased sweating and trouble sleeping. An underactive thyroid ( hypothyroidism ) can also cause your period to be less frequent. It can also cause weight gain, fatigue, dry skin and hair loss. A blood test helps rule out this option.
4. Hormonal imbalance
Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is a condition in which the female sex hormones are deregulated. It can cause ovarian cysts and prevent ovulation regularly.
In addition to lost or irregular periods, PCOS can also cause excess hair growth, acne, weight gain and possibly infertility. Through a blood test, you can check the status of hormonal levels.
Extreme weight loss, low-calorie intake or very low weight stress the hypothalamus and the body does not release the estrogen needed to build the lining of the uterus.
Eating disorders such as bulimia and anorexia also cause estrogen levels to drop. On the other hand, being overweight or gaining a lot of weight in a short time can make your body produce too much estrogen. Both one extreme and the other are harmful to health.
The overload can make you spend months without ovulating or the endometrial lining grow too much and become unstable. Which results in heavy, irregular or missing periods.
Both hormonal contraceptives and other drugs can alter the menstrual period. Among the most prominent are: antidepressants, some antipsychotics, corticosteroids and medications used for chemotherapy.
The Perimenopause is the period of time preceding menopause, which begins to decline estrogen production. Therefore, during perimenopause, it is common to have changes in the menstrual cycle.
The periods can be more or less frequent, shorter or longer, lighter or heavier. But you are also likely to experience hot flashes and night sweats, sleep difficulties, vaginal dryness and mood swings.
On the other hand, it should be born in mind that a period of delay may have an emotional origin. The key is not to draw hasty conclusions until you discover what is really happening. A visit to the doctor can help identify the cause.