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Love Matters

8 reasons your period is late

By Love Matters January 11, 10:58 pm
Worried because your period is late? Do not start saving for diapers yet, missed or late periods happen for many reasons other than pregnancy.

There are also two instances in a woman’s life when it’s totally normal for her period to be irregular: when it first begins, and when menopause starts. 

For most women, the period comes every 28 days. In others, a normal and healthy menstrual cycle can come every 21 to 35 days. 

Sometimes, periods are late and while the first suspect is usually pregnancy, there are several other reasons that can cause periods to delay.

Your periods can also be late because of at least one of the following reasons:


A little stress doesn’t hurt but chronic stress can affect your cycle. Prolonged or high levels of stress can affect the hormones that regulate the ovaries leading to delayed or missed periods. It’s good to remember that what’s considered stressful to one woman may not be stressful to another.

Big change in body weight

Have you lost or gained a lot of weight? A major loss or gain in weight can affect your monthly cycle. Health problems especially eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia have been linked to missed or delayed periods.

Body fat impacts the amount of estrogen hormone your body produces, and too much or too little estrogen can affect both ovulation and menstruation.


When you go on or off birth control, you may experience a change in your monthly cycle. Birth control pills contain estrogen and progestin hormones which prevent your ovaries from releasing eggs. The same thing can happen when you are on IUD, implants, or shot.

Intense athletic activity

Intense athletic training can be associated with irregular periods or missed periods. Excessive and rigorous exercises lower estrogen levels, a hormone that regulates your reproductive system. Some female athletes may miss their period for six months or longer due to rigorous exercises.  


Certain medications can impact the regularity of your menstrual cycle. If you are on medication, it is possible that one of its side effects is irregular periods. This also includes certain birth control medications.  

Certain diseases

Certain illnesses can delay your period. This is especially true for chronic illnesses such as diabetes and pituitary tumor, thyroid disease, and celiac disease. Each of these can affect your menstrual cycle in different ways. For example, poorly controlled diabetes can lead to delayed period because hormonal changes are linked to changes in blood sugar.

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) causes hormonal imbalance in your body which, in turn, causes infrequent or prolonged menses. Women with PCOS may have excess levels of androgen (male hormone) which may be manifested by excess facial or body hair.


If you are in your late 40s and above, you may experience delayed periods because you are menopausal. The irregularity of your periods is due to a decrease in estrogen hormone. In some cases, women below 45 years may also experience delayed or missed periods due to early menopause.


Long-distance travel can mess with your body’s clock, which can also have an impact on the regularity of your periods. It may either cause your periods to come early, late, or miss.

Your doctor can diagnose the exact cause for your irregular or missed periods and offer treatment. It is important to keep a record of your periods to show your doctor. Visit your doctor for a more accurate diagnosis.

Did you learn something new?


Hi Rose, 

The chances are very low but not totally impossible. Note that the likelihood of getting pregnant starts to increase again with each passing day, even though you are still on your period. If your ovulation starts soon after your periods, it is possible to conceive through sperm that have survived. Remember that sperm can survive up to 5 days inside a woman's system. If you have a 21 day period, ovulation happens around day 7 from the start of your period and this means that your most fertile days are days 5,6, and 7. If you have irregular periods as well, ovulation may happen sooner thus increasing chances of getting pregnant. In short, the chances are low but not zero. 

Wed, 02/24/2021 - 10:29 am

Hello Anonymous, thank you for reaching out to us. We are sorry you are going through a hard time. Have you considered taking a pregnancy test or visited the doctor?

Sun, 04/11/2021 - 04:41 pm
I started my periods on 7th last month then went to visit my boyfriend on 19th the same month and now this month haven't seen my periods am so much worried could it be possible that am pregnant

Hello Nicole, thank you for coming to us with this. Avoiding pregnancy while having unprotected sex needs you to track your period. Your cycle begins on the first day of your period to the first day of your next period.

To know how long your cycle is, you will need to track it closely for a few months. Most women's cycle's last between 28 and 30 days. However, yours may be longer or shorter. Day one through seven are considered to be infertile. Day eight through to day 19 are considered to be your most fertile. From day 20 to day 26 to 30 are considered to be your infertile days.

This article should provide more information. Please remember, that using this method can prevent pregnancy but you will still be exposed to STI's. This method is not full proof and pregnancy could still occur.

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