Causes of Delayed Menstruation and Missed Periods

What causes delay of menstruation? Why would a woman or a young girl miss her periods for prolonged periods of time? While pregnancy may be the major cause, it is not always the cause. This article give ten more causes of delayed or missed periods.

The first thing that comes to mind when periods delay is pregnancy. Could this be the only cause of delayed menstruation? Are there any other causes of delayed periods that should allay the fears of the girl child? While there could be other causes of the delay, pregnancy is always a possibility unless of course abstinence was adhered to. What then are the other causes?

  1. Stress – Stress is known to affect the very hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle and often interferes with ovulation, which normally precedes menses. One should therefore ask herself if this could be the cause.
  2. Anxiety – Just like stress, anxiety is an enemy of regular periods and may lead to a delay if not managed right in time. Anxious women have been known to miss periods altogether or for prolonged periods of time.
  3. Medication – Any drugs that interfere with hormonal balance may actually take their toll on the body’s estrus cycle. Before anyone concludes that pregnancy is the issue, a definitive test needs to be conducted.
  4. Disease – There are diseases that generally affect hormonal concentration, body metabolism or merely lead to stress making menstruation next to impossible. Hypothyroidism, diabetes mellitus and depression are some of them.
  5. Overwork – Just like anxiety and stress, overworking the body is known to lead to amenorrhea in women due to increased production of steroid hormones during muscular exertion especially cortisol.
  6. Malnutrition – The body needs to be fed well in order to function properly. Anorexic as well as starving women are known to miss their periods for as long as they aren’t feeding well.
  7. Breastfeeding – It causes what is known as lactational amenorrhea since it has the same effect like contraceptives on the estrus cycle. Women who breastfeed are known to miss their periods for several months.
  8. Abnormal body weight – Very low body weight as well as obesity are known to affect the menstrual cycle leading to delayed or missed periods.
  9. Contraceptives – Use of hormone based oral contraceptives, implants as well as injection is known to cause amenorrhea. Women who have used any of these methods should not be worried if their periods aren’t regular for some time.
  10. Menopause – It could be a way of telling you that you are getting old and menopause is now setting in. It is normal for women heading into the sunset years of their reproductive age to have delayed or missed periods.
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  1. This a great article. Would you soften the blow for older women in #10. How bout’ when women enter the ‘Golden Years’, instead of getting old. You know how touchy women can get. #5 is very interesting. Perhaps women were not made for stressful work and should stay at home. Ooops! My bad! Being a mother can get real stressful.Just thought I’d throw that in.

  2. This is a very informative article. My period used to be late when I was a teenager. Sometimes it would be weeks late. I took a pill and then it lasted too long. It could have been due to stress.

  3. Thanx 4 sharing. Having this info handy would help reduce anxiety over it being delayed.

  4. It is informative definitely.

  5. Nice post, also very well researched, great share.

  6. Very well researched, compiled and well presented.

  7. Great tips. My friend needs this information. Thanks!

  8. This is no longer a problem after my total hysterectomy.

  9. Cheers

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