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Don’t panic, a missed period doesn’t always mean you’re pregnant. A regular menstrual cycle takes 28 days. However, for most women, cycles can take longer or shorter durations, somewhere between 21-35 days. This leaves women wondering whether they are pregnant or just having some sort of imbalance.
Here are some reasons why you might miss your period other than pregnancy:
Weight changes and eating disorders
Any change that occurs in your body might affect your menstrual cycle whether it’s weight loss or gain, especially dramatic and sudden ones. According to Livestrong, if you’re on a diet with 1,100 daily calorie intake or less, you might experience a late period.
According to “Obesity and reproductive disorders” research, obesity is highly related to infrequent periods and the absence of ovulation. Women who suffer from eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia will probably experience abnormal hormonal changes, which in turn will delay the menstruation cycle.
When you first take contraceptive pills, injections, or patches, you might witness a delay in your period. The same might happen when you stop taking them.
Unfortunately, stress is sometimes every mother’s companion. However, too much stress causes the body to produce cortisol hormone. This hormone gives the brain signals to stop releasing estrogen and progesterone which are necessary for the menstrual cycle.
Hypothyroidism, a condition in which the thyroid gland doesn’t produce sufficient hormones, affects the regularity of the menstrual cycle.
High levels of prolactin
Prolactin is the hormone responsible for the stimulation of breast milk. High levels of prolactin can disturb the menstrual cycle.
Some medications, like antidepressants, might delay periods.
A high-intensity workout can cause a missing period, especially when you first start working out. With time, your body adapts and the cycle returns to normal. If you miss your period for more than 3 months, you should consult a gynecologist. Moreover, a workout that causes body fat loss might delay your period because the female body needs 15-17% fat to support the sex hormones.
Further reading: 4 Reasons Your Pregnancy Test Is Negative, Yet You Are Pregnant