6 Reasons Your Period Could Be Late Besides Being Pregnant

Whether you get your period every 28 days like clockwork or have a flow that prefers to come and go as it pleases, having a period go MIA often feels like cause for alarm. Your mind runs wild with thoughts of pregnancy tests and ultrasounds and watching your baby graduate college - an imaginary life that you’ve created and nurtured and helped grow all because that little bit of blood you were hoping to find this morning didn’t make it’s appearance. Whether pregnancy right now is your goal or you’re holding off temporarily or forever, a fetus in utero is certainly not the only cause of a period gone rogue. Here are 6 reasons, besides being pregnant, that your period could be late.

1. Stress

If you’ve been running yourself ragged at work or dealing with other stressors, especially traumatic ones, your period could be late. This is called hypothalamic amenorrhea. “The hypothalamus is the center of the brain and controls reproduction. It produces a hormone that signals the production of other hormones needed for ovulation,” according to Shady Grove Fertility. So, if you’ve been stressed about something - big or small - do your best to find some time for relaxation. If you’ve experienced a traumatic situation, you should call your doctor and seek a professional opinion.

2. Being sick

The amazing things your body does are all intertwined on some level. When one system isn’t working as well as it should, the others are affected, too. It’s like a game of survival - which bodily process is the most important right now? If you have a common cold, the flu, or some other type of illness, your menstrual cycle is likely the first to be shut down in order to get the rest of your body back up to speed.

3. Weight fluctuations

Say hello to your hypothalamus again (the center in the brain that controls reproductive hormones, like estrogen). When you experience extreme fluctuations in your weight, the amount of estrogen released can impact whether you get your period or not. If you lose a lot of weight quickly, your body won’t produce enough estrogen. Too much weight gain and your body will have too much estrogen. Either way, this could be a reason your period is late.

4. Change in your schedule

Minor changes in your schedule aren’t going to have an impact on your menstrual cycle but intense ones, like switching to the night shift or having jet lag from traveling across the world (you jetsetter, you!), can. The good news is that it’s temporary. Once your body acclimates to your new schedule, your periods should resume as normal. If they don’t, it’s worth calling your doctor about.

5. Hormonal Imbalance

Hormones, of course, play a large role in your menstrual cycle. They determine the heaviness, the length, and even whether your period comes at all. If your hormones are out of whack, you may not menstruate. One cause could be PCOS. Another could be endometriosis. If you suspect this is the case, call your doctor. They’ll be able to put you on a path to help regulate symptoms.

6. Your birth control

Yes, even if you don’t skip the sugar pills, your birth control could be editing your menstrual cycle. Whether you have an IUD, get Depo shots, or are on the pill, the hormonal changes caused by birth control can sometimes eliminate or lessen your period. While this can sometimes be a welcome side effect, it’s good to know that it’s actually the cause of a late or nonexistent period.

If you think you’re pregnant, it’s always a good idea to take a test. Otherwise, talk to your doctor about your late period - they can provide valuable insight and ease your mind.

109 comments

Hi Eno! If you’re concerned about pregnancy we recommend taking an at-home pregnancy test. As we are not medical professionals we unfortunately cannot offer diagnosis.
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor January 19, 2021

Please I had sex on the 5th of January he pull out and didn’t come inside expecting my period on the 10th but I am yet to see it and I am feeling feverish and sick am I pregnant ?

Eno January 19, 2021

Hi, Tina! If you feel your period delay is not related to any of the points mentioned in this post it is best to contact a doctor to discuss your concern. As we are not medical professionals we unfortunately cannot offer diagnosis.
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor December 11, 2020

Hi, Lilian! If you are concerned about pregnancy we recommend taking an at home pregnancy test. If you’re experiencing anything of concern it is best to contact a doctor. As we are not medical professionals we unfortunately cannot offer medical advice.
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor December 11, 2020

I mestrate on the 29 of October and I had sex on the 22,23 of November and I did not see my period in the month of November I ran a test s negative I don’t know what s the cus I missed my period I needed answers

Tina December 11, 2020

Hi ihad unprotected sex on 28th Nov and since then ihave been having yeast infection till now ihave not seen my period what could be the problem

Lilian December 11, 2020

Hi Angel! If you are concerned about pregnancy we recommend an at home pregnancy test. As we are not medical professionals we unfortunately cannot provide diagnosis or PCOS or any other conditions. We recommend consulting a doctor. 💙
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor November 23, 2020

I’m 31 days late on my period, seems like I got it yesterday, small drop of blood came out and similar like menstruation with some clots. But now it’s gone, didn’t even fill up my pad. Am I pregnant or is this pcos?

Angel November 23, 2020

I had sex on 11 of October ( unprotected sex),and I was expecting my period on 13 of October am yet to see it till now,is there any chances of getting pregnant?

Murna November 10, 2020

Hi Rhenis! Postinor is a hormonal emergency contraceptive. Your period is controlled by hormones, and when your hormonal balance is thrown off course it can have an effect on your cycle. Hormonal contraceptives can disrupt your cycle for even a few months due to the high hormone content. If you are feeling concerned it is best to contact your doctor. <3 -Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor October 01, 2020

I had sex with my boyfriend on 31st of September and I used p2 immediately but my periods have not showed up yet and have tested pregnancy twice showing negative what could be the reason

Rhenis Atieno October 01, 2020

I saw my last period on June 28 and I have sex with my boyfriend on July 12 and I have not seen my July period what could be the problem I used pregnancy test it show me negative am worried is now a new month

Priscilla September 14, 2020

Hi Nhlamulo! If you are concerned about the delay or missing period it is best to consult a doctor. :)
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor July 27, 2020

Hi TYTIANNA! There are many reasons, detailed in this post, that can cause your period to be delayed or skipped. If you are concerned about the delay it is best to consult a doctor. :)
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor July 17, 2020

Hi my name is tytianna I had protective sex with my boyfriend on June 22 or 23 and my period was supposed to come on July 11th but didnt come on so I took 2 pregnancy test at different times and both came out negative its July 16th now and my period still has not came on I’m I pregnant

TYTIANNA July 17, 2020

Hi. I’ve never had sex for the past 6 months and now my period is 12 days late and I am not on birth control or stressing . Please send help.

Nhlamulo Sithole July 17, 2020

Hi Niki and Mosunmola! Your period could be delayed for any of the reasons listed on this post. :) If you’re concerned about the delay it is best to contact a doctor. If you’re concerned you may be pregnant we recommend taking a pregnancy test.
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor July 11, 2020

Hi Temi! Your period could be delayed for any of the reasons listed on this post. :) If you’re concerned about the delay it is best to contact a doctor.
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor July 11, 2020

I have seen June period and I have used done two PT showing negative to pregnancy… I am so confused right now for we are in another month already.

Temi July 11, 2020

Hi…we had a sex on march 18 and on April I had my period but in may and June I didn’t had my periods. So is there any chances of getting pregnant.??
Please reply me…

Niki July 11, 2020

I had sex on june11 and I took pills (Postinor2) which I did pregnancy test till date which reads negative so, I had sex on june25 as well and till date I haven’t seen my period and it keeps on reading negative on the pregnancy test and till date I haven’t see my period

Mosunmola July 11, 2020

Hi, Annie! Your period may be delayed for any of the reasons listed above in this post. If you are still concerned about the delay we recommend consulting a physician. As we are not medical professionals we cannot offer diagnosis.
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor June 26, 2020

Hi Success! Your period may be delayed for any of the reasons listed in the above post. If you’re concerned about pregnancy we recommend taking an at home pregnancy test. ;)
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor June 26, 2020

I saw my period on 19th of may 2020.. and this month I have not seen it.. note I have not had sex for long… Please should i be worried..or what should I take to make it regular

Annie June 26, 2020

I had sex with my bf on the last day of my period being 27th of May and he ejaculated inside me. Since then I haven’t seen my period

Success June 26, 2020

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