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.

132 comments

Hi!!! Am having a delay in menstruation , I saw my period last 30th July 2021 . And in the month of August Its was supposed to come out 24th , apparently it’s 27th days today . Am I pregnant or not .
Cause I have done Pt test and it shows Negative ,what is the cause.
And am not having a signs of pregnancy pls help a sister ,
Thanks Chidinma .

Chidinma Evans September 02, 2021

Hi Blessing! Being ill is a common reason for your period to get delayed. When you are ill your body is using all of its energy to fight off the illness. Having a period is a high energy task for the body and sometimes your body will prioritize that energy to other things, like making sure you get well. :)
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor August 23, 2021

Hi Ctris! If you are concerned about pregnancy we recommend taking an at home pregnancy test. :)
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor August 23, 2021

Hi Favour! Emergency contraceptives contain high amounts of hormones. Your menstrual cycle is also regulated by hormones, so using anything that messes with your hormone balance is likely to cause effects with your period. It is very common for your period to be delayed/heavier/lighter than usual after using any hormone based emergency contraceptive. If you are concerned about the delayed period it is best to consult a doctor. :)
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor August 23, 2021

I took a clearblue ovulation test last month and it was positive… then i fell very sick now my period is late…. i did a test and im not pregnant…i dont understand

Blessing August 23, 2021

Hi Dechen! If you are still concerned about pregnancy after taking a test it is best to consult a doctor. :) -Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor August 16, 2021

Hi Nkem! If you are still concerned about the delayed period after reading this post it is best to consult a doctor. As we are not medical professionals we cannot offer diagnosis.
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor August 16, 2021

I have missed my period for 15 days now and all home pregnancy test are negative…..
Am i pregnant or i should wait….

Dechen August 16, 2021

My menstruation has been delayed for 16days now, am not having any signs of pregnancy. The last day I had sex was 2days after I missed my period. What cause the delay please.

Nkem favour August 16, 2021

I had my period 4th of this month and was supposed to see it again by 25th of this same month but it hasn’t come…
I’m sick of fever tho

Osas August 16, 2021

My last period was on 6 june I hard sex with my boyfriend 18 and 28 of same june my next period is July 4 today is July 10 does it mean am pregnant

Ctris August 23, 2021

Hi U! As we are not medical professionals we unfortunately cannot offer diagnosis. We recommend consulting a doctor if you are feeling concerned. <3
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor June 29, 2021

I saw my last period on the 27 of April I didn’t see it in the month of May later saw it June 18th till now 26th of June blood is still coming out, what could be the problem.

U June 29, 2021

Hi,I had an unprotected sex on the 19th of May, and he came inside of me and I took postinor2,and I was suppose to see my period at d ending of May but I’ve not seen it till date, though I did a manual pT and is showing negative…..pls what could be the cause.

Favour August 23, 2021

Hi Emmauella! There are many reasons that can cause your period to be delayed, as mentioned in the above article. If you’re feeling concerned about the delay it’s best to consult a doctor. ☺️
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor May 04, 2021

My period is late for 18 days.
My period was from 10-14(4 days)

Emmauella Adams May 04, 2021

Hi Hilda! Any of the reason in this post could be contributing to a delay in your period. If you’re feeling concern it’s best to consult a doctor. ☺️
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor March 18, 2021

My period hasn’t started after four days of due date I have been tested negative what could be the cause

Hilda March 18, 2021

Hiya, Aanal Vyas! 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 March 04, 2021

I av my depo shot on sep 19 and it three month.and it February I av not see my menstruation.

Adenike March 04, 2021

Hi Pretty! As it has been quite long now without a period we recommend contacting a doctor so they can help determine what could be the cause. 💙
-Team Lunette

Lunette Menstrual Mentor February 19, 2021

I have missed my period from April 06 2020 n I’ve done pregnant tests but I’m not pregnant
Which means i have 10 months full with no menstrual periods

Pretty February 19, 2021

HELP!!!
I had protected sex on 25th Dec. then I got my dec month periods as normal, but now my January periods which should be 25th (as per app) and am still not on periods (28th). I usually get my periods 2 days early than the date which is on app

HELP!!

Aanal Vyas March 04, 2021

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

Leave a comment

All comments are moderated before being published