Missed Periods – A sign of fertility as well as infertility

For many women of childbearing age, pregnancy is first suspected when their menstrual cycle goes haywire.

Missing your monthly period by a few days is not a significant concern. We are talking about missed periods by the weeks or months.

When this strikes you, the first question to ask yourself is “how old am I?”

The underlying reasons of a missed period vary by the age.

If you have just stepped into puberty, your periods may not have a fixed schedule as your body takes time to adjust itself to its new condition, usually taking 6 months to a year to do so. Unless you have had sex the month before, this should be normal. See a doctor should it take more than a year to adjust or if your last period was more than 6 months ago.

Speaking about missed periods in a woman in her late 40’s, menopause comes first on the list. Missed periods is not a menopause unless your last period was 12 months ago. Like the irregularity you have faced in your early years of puberty, your body has the same reason when it comes to menopause; that is, trying to adjust the body to stop menstruating.

Delayed periods are normal at the start and at the end of your fertile life

Missed periods occurring at other than the above mentioned ages (i.e. somewhere between 18 and 45 years old) can be worrisome. Whether it’s normal or not is a big question. If you are breastfeeding, pregnant or are on contraceptive pills, then yes, it’s normal.

Delayed menstruation can also be caused by reasons as simple as stress, overweight, underweight or anorexia, all of which may sometimes be overlooked. Excessive exercise, such as those done by athletes, may also delay menses.

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Pregnant? Click here for more info on the signs of Pregnancy

If you think none of the above applies to you, then let us move on to more serious, but not uncommon problems which may call for a doctor’s attention. The most common problem women face is cysts growing in their ovaries, medically termed ‘polycystic ovarian syndrome’ or abbreviated as PCOS. Cysts are small fluid-filled sacs that develop in a woman’s ovaries. The word ‘poly’ refers to more than one cyst in growing in the ovary. Nevertheless, the presence of even one cyst may disturb your menstruation, let alone if it is multiple. Cyst tends to get bigger when the ovary fails to ovulate and release the egg into the Fallopian tube.  This is caused by, and in turn may lead to hormonal imbalances.

Delayed menstruation can also be caused by reasons as simple as stress, overweight, underweight or anorexia, all of which may sometimes be overlooked.

If you have had any abortions, cleaning of your womb (D&C) after a miscarriage, hysteroscopy or any other instrumental procedures done on your cervix or womb, adhesions are more likely suspected. Adhesions are fibrous bands forming between tissues and organs due to scarring. These block the flow of blood during menses and may trick you into thinking that you have missed a cycle. This, as well as PCOS, may cause infertility. If you are trying to conceive, it is wise to consider these possibilities.

Other less common causes of missed menstruation are diabetes, thyroid hormones imbalance, intestinal problems, tuberculosis and liver diseases. Don’t forget that side effects of various medications or drug abuse can also be a cause.

So, should you see a doctor right away? Don’t rush, don’t stress yourself up. Relax. Take a deep breath. Try to think of the possibilities of being pregnant. You might want to get yourself a urine pregnancy test to make sure pregnancy is not the cause of your missed periods.

If you’re overweight/underweight, reducing your weight/gaining weight helps restore normal cycles and fertility. Check your body mass index to be sure. Still not helping? Still not sure what is the cause of your missed periods? Looks like it’s time for you to see a doctor for further tests.

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832 Comments

  1. Hi since 2 year i didnt got my period..
    And now my weight is 65…
    Is my weight cause a oroblem for that…
    Plz help me…

    • Dr Elaine Loh

      Hi Sara
      The fact that your period has stopped for 2 years, is not normal and warrants further tests/ investigations to identify the cause, especially with the weight gain. I would advise you to come in to visit one of our doctors for a consultation so that we can help you. We have female doctors if you prefer.

      http://www.drtanandpartners.com/where-to-find-us/

  2. I am 53 years old sexually active, and still have regular cycle, suddenly I missed my period in march until now I am still waiting for my period but hasn’t come yet..I took pregnancy test just this week May 4th and got NP. I am experiencing some pregnancy symptoms , bloated, nausea and vomiting.. also my belly is getting bigger. Am I possible pregnant? Please help

  3. Hi please ill be 31 in 7weeks. I used to have a 28days period and will last for 5days but for the past 6months I noticed it reduced to 3days, last month it came on the 5th of march and up till date 9\04 it hasn’t come. I haven’t had sex in the last 1year plus I have no std so please what can be the problem?

    • Dr Elaine Loh

      It will be best to speak to our doctors so that appropriate advice can be given after a detailed consultation.

  4. I am 42 years old and haven’t had a period for 8 months after I took the plan b like 5 months ago can I be pregnant

    • Dr. Julian Ng

      Hi,

      Please visit your doctor for further evaluation of missed menses.

  5. My period is irregular, most of the time it’ll come later than the expected date. However my last period ended on 28th Nov 17 and I had protected sex with my bf on various occasion after my period ended. I also had stomach flu on 8th Jan – 12th Jan 18 and because of the viral flu, my food intake were all messed up and I lost a kg. I’m currently experiencing abdominal cramps, and when I go to toilet my poops are runny and also my boobs hurts for a week already. I also feel very bloated after every meal. I took a pregnancy test on 23rd Jan and it showed negative. Am wondering why my period isn’t here for about 32 days (based on the app)? So far there isn’t any spotting. Am I pregnant?

    • Dr Elaine Loh

      Some of the symptoms you describe are symptoms of pregnancy. However, they could also be pre-menstrual symptoms.

      If you are concerned, repeat another pregnancy test in 1-2 weeks time, or see a doctor for an assessment.

  6. Hi I’m a 15 years old gal n I’m still a virgin I’ve last seen ma period on February so its been 9 month since I’ve last seen ma period…..is it normal coz I’m already worried because I’m not pregnant

  7. Hello! My name is Emaan and I’m 17 and still a virgin. My periods are always irregular but now I’m 45 days late and I got a yeast infection as well. Is yeast infection is effecting my periods? Or is there something else happening? Can anyone please help?

  8. Hi! I’m 24 & diagnosed with PCOS on both ovaries. My OB recommended me to take duphaston (2x a day) for 4days since I’m almost 2months delayed (my LMP was July12). She said I’ll got my period during or after medication, & I’m already on the 3rd day. I’m just curious of what would be the next step if ever my period will not arrive? Should I increase my duphaston intake?

    Before my medication, we had an unprotected sex with my boyfriend as well as on my first medication. Can I get pregnant? What would be the percentage?

    • Dr Elaine Loh

      The best person to direct these questions to would be your OB doctor, since she already has a treatment plan for you.
      Pregnancy is possible in patients with PCOS. There is no way any doctor would be able to tell you the percentage of getting pregnant.

  9. Hi.I’m 18 yr old.I had my last period on 3July.I had sex with my bf and we didn’t use protection.But I tested the pregnancy test and the result is no.I checked for twice and the answer is still no.I don’t know why my period hasn’t come.Could you give me an suggestion?

    • Hi, it is best you come down and visit us for a consult and evaluation. We may need to assess with some blood tests and possibly consider ultrasound scan to check the womb/ovaries.

  10. Ms. Bacchus

    Last year aft doing an ultrasound it had shown that I av pcos, I’m having irregular period, for the starting of this year I was having my period every month until July when I didn’t had any, by the way I’m having unprotected sex with my fiance, can u pls help me out there, thank u

  11. My husband and I have been trying for a baby for a few months now. My cycle has always been regular, around 35 days but I have missed my period for almost a month now. This is the first time I’ve missed my period. I have taken several pregnancy kit tests but all turned out negative when period was late for 2 weeks. When should I be concerned and make a trip to the doctor?

    • Dr Elaine Loh

      You could repeat a urine pregnancy test in 2 weeks time.
      Alternatively, you could visit the doctor now to get an assessment and a blood test (pregnancy test) done.
      Our Locations

  12. Hi. I am 30 yrs old. I have regular period. My cycle before were between 9-12th of month then after a while it change to end of the month. I had sex last July 13 and we didn’t use protection, but my partner said he did withdrawal. Now I am worried because my menstruation is delayed 3weeks now that supposedly on the end of July. I am afraid to use Pregnancy Test. It is possible that I’m pregnant? I lose 3kgs this July. Thanks.

  13. Bianca

    Hi. 17 yrs. Old , my period comes monthly (regular). This yr. May 2017 was my last period and i didn’t have this June, till now. I never had sex, last May i drunk cold lemon juice when I still have my period then my period becomes light in color and that month I was stress, I am worried why my period is delayed for 60 days and counting.

  14. Tokri

    Hello.
    I am 23 married this jan.
    M virgin till now.
    Always hav irregular periods… Say like 4-5 days up.
    But this time its already 11 days up nd m nt even feeling like getting mense.
    Wht might b the reason.

    I gt a belly pot.
    Getting fats in stomach.

    Any solutions??!

  15. I am 44 years old. Never missed my period since 13 years old. My cycle has always been a 28 days cycle. If ever delayed only for a week or two. But this time its for 2 months. I have never missed my period that long. Pregnancy test revealed negative. I had my period now… Did i have a miscarriage. Or just a missed period. I experienced the early signs of pregnancy, food cravings, eating a lot, tender nipples, full breast and bigger than usual tummy. Will appreciate your reply. Thanks

  16. Nicole

    I started skipping periods. Then didn’t have one for two months. I went to the doctor, and she told me, “It’s because you’re on birth control. I’m sure of it.” Well, I’ve been on the pill for 15 years and never skipped or missed. Now, I’ve missed four in a row.

    I am not pregnant (I’ve taken a test every month I’ve missed). I also told her I was having discomfort in my lower right abdomen and was spotting during sex. Again, something I haven’t experienced in 15 years of being sexually active. She told me it was probably my uterus, again because of the pill.

    She agreed to give me an ultrasound, and she said it came back clean, though I have no copy.

    My weight hasn’t changed. My health hasn’t changed. My stress levels are lower.

    If I’m not pregnant, and I don’t have any ovarian or uterine issues that are visible on an ultrasound, what could be causing this?

  17. I am a lady aged 25 my my cycle is 7 or 8 of every month. i had sex on the 16th of January 2016 now today is 11 February. I have missed my cycle.After two weeks of my intercourse, i had a terrible womb pain but now the pains had gone. I am worried i might be pregnant.

  18. hi,I am 29 yrs and 67kg weight..I did abortion (11weeks)on 11/02/2016..after july 2016..I had irregular period and 2month before I did ultrasound..all are normal.my thyroid was also in normal..but my last period was 01/11/2016…I did test for 5-6 times all came negative …my boobs getting bigger and now feels like morning sickness..bloating..am I pregnant or there is some problems in my body…plz suggesr

    • Hi Nlm,
      Thanks for the enquiry.
      I suggest you come to clinic for an evaluation of your hormone levels – an imbalance may be causing your irregular mensus.

  19. Hi, I’m 36 years old and married. We’ve been trying to have a baby for more than 8 months already. Now, I am 11 days delayed but been having spotting since the 5th day of my delay. I took a test on the 6th day but it came back negative. I am too confused. What could be the possible reason for this? I am also having lower back pains and a bloated feeling in my tummy.

    • It is still possible that you are pregnant. It is a little too early to show up as positive. You can re-test again after 1-2 weeks.
      If you are concerned, please see a doctor.

  20. Hello my name is Alexa. I have had irregular periods sense I first started. I’m 21, and married we tried to conceive this month and my date due was 10/20 it is now the 26th and still no period and I took two tests from first response but they both came back negative. I have cramps and boob tenderness and back ache and headaches but still no period. Please help me in understanding what is going on.

  21. Hi I am 28 year old. My weight is 67 kg. I have always had delayed periods. Always there is delay by around 9 days. But menstruated every month. Now i am trying for pregnancy. But from last year my periods are quite irregular. Don’ t know the exact readon. But i suddenly started doing yoga, lots of sun salutations, earlier when i suddenly started running/ jogging my periods vanished. The maximum gap in periods i have faced is 2 n half months.. i did pregnancy test twice.. it is negative… please advice solution to regulate my periods. Thanks

    • There are many possible reasons for irregular periods. My best advice is for you to see your doctor to find out what is wrong before embarking on any home solutions.

  22. Hello,
    My period is regular I have experienced it coming a day or two early as well. I also experienced it coming late. I had intercourse on June 20 I was not ovulating and my period came a week later on time. Now we are in July and my period is supposed to be here and it is three days late. I am feeling nauseous as well. What should I do?

    • You are afraid you are pregnant? Wait a while more. If you period still does not come, do a home pregnancy test.

  23. Tilly

    Hello, I’m confused! I’m 47 with regualr periods until this one. I’m now 12days late, ive had occasional brownish spotting that didn’t require any sanitary protection. At the weekend I took a pregnancy test (not a very sensitive one), which was negative and today I accidently used an ovulation predictor test strip instead of a pregnancy test…the ovulation strip was a definite positive. I’ve read that this could indicate pregnacy as well as ovulation but without a period how could I be ovulationg? Many thanks

    • Hi Tilly,
      An ovulation test doesn’t test for pregnancy, just for ovulation. If you start to have irregular mensus at this age, it could be because you are entering the perimenopausal period.
      You can opt to wait and to observe your period cycles for now, or you may come into clinic for a hormone blood test, to check your menopausal state.

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