There are few things scarier than missing your period, especially if you’re not planning a baby. But what’s even scarier is not having your period at all for months at a time. Even the busiest of women who are generally too occupied with their lives to notice one missed period will sit up and take notice if they miss four. Having no period can be a bit of a relief for most women as it means no hassle and no PMS. But you should pay attention if this is happening, or rather, not happening. When the workings of your body deviate from the norm, it is a sure sign that something is up. Figuring out what is your job. If your body needs care, you need to oblige. Let’s take a look at how the medical community describes no period and some of the main reasons that you may be having no period.
If you have reached sexual maturity and have no period for more than three months in a row, it is known as amenorrhoea or the absence of periods. The word is a combination of three Greek words – ‘a’ which means absence or lack of, ‘men’ which means month, and ‘rhoia’ which means flow. To summarise, the absence of a women’s monthly flow is called amenorrhoea.
Kinds of Amenorrhoea / No Period
There are two kinds of amenorrhoea – primary and secondary. If you have never had your period, then you have primary amenorrhoea. And secondary amenorrhoea would relate to those who have had their periods before but it has stopped for some reason.
There are quite literally hundreds of reasons that amenorrhoea occurs. While it is not possible to explore each and every one of them here, listed below are some of the most common reasons for no period.
No Period Causes
- Let’s get the obvious out of the way first. One of the simplest reasons for not getting your period for months is that you are pregnant. You may be one of those lucky few who experience absolutely no morning sickness or other symptoms, which is perhaps why the thought never crossed your mind. There are dozens of home pregnancy tests available on the market. Buy one and let the stick tell you what’s what. If you are a healthy woman of child-bearing age who doesn’t smoke, drink or stress out, then you could very well be pregnant.
- You will also have no period when you are lactating, i.e. breastfeeding your baby because the hormones that are responsible for producing milk are the same ones that rule your reproductive system.
- If you are 45 years of age or thereabouts, then no period could simply mean that you are hitting menopause.
- Teenagers often have irregular periods or no period for some months. This is actually quite common and not a cause for worry. During adolescence, the body undergoes massive hormonal changes which can disrupt a lot of chemical processes, thus leading to the patent teenage breakouts, mood swings, and the inevitable no period phase. Not all young girls will experience this though so a visit to the doctor is necessary to rule out the more sinister causes.
- One of the things your doctor will check you for if you have no period for over four months is polycystic ovarian disease. As the name suggests, the disease is usually characterised by more than one cyst on the ovaries. But the presence of cysts is not a necessary prerequisite. No cysts may show up on an ultrasound but you may still have the condition, which occurs due to hormonal imbalance.
- If you are on a contraceptive pill for a long time and then get off it, you may experience a couple of months with no period. This occurs as your body is re-balancing its chemical processes which were put on hold because of the Pill.
- Weight problems will definitely affect your period. If you are severely under weight or over weight for your height, then your reproductive system reacts by shutting down. This is your body’s self-preservation program kicking in.
If you are malnourished, then your body knows that it does not have the ability to nourish a child, and it knows that it is not safe for you to be pregnant at such a time. So it simply eliminates your period altogether so that there is no chance of pregnancy. Athletes who over-train, especially runners, and women with eating disorders frequently end up having no period for months at a time.
If you are overweight, there is a great strain on your organs which get over-stressed. You body knows you are too unhealthy to safely mother a child and thus shuts down. Once you are at a stable weight again, your period will resume its regular cycle.
- Extreme mental stress or psychological trauma has also been known to result in no period for a few months.
- There are several medical conditions for which no period is a symptom. Some examples include hyperthyroidism or an overactive thyroid gland, cancer, and tuberculosis. Long-term chronic illness of any kind has usually led to the absence of periods for some time.
- Patients with diabetes have also been known to have no period at times. This can be remedied by regulating the insulin levels in the body.
- A rare reason for no period is the absence of a uterus or vagina because of birth defects. This is not an obvious or noticeable cause and will have to be investigated to form a diagnosis. Surgical correction may be required in this case.
No Period Remedies
It is impossible to note down all the ways of curing amenorrhoea without knowing why it is occurring in the first place. If the underlying cause of no period is treated, then there is a very high probability that your period will resume normally.
For example, if you have weight problems, then you must consciously take steps to bring your weight to normal. If you know that you are over-stressed, take on fewer responsibilities and give yourself permission to relax.
In fact, adopting a healthy lifestyle is the best remedy for curing most health problems. Eat nutritious, organic, whole foods instead of processed foods, cut down on caffeine, alcohol, and junk food, take the stairs more often, hit the gym or jog around the block on the weekend instead of slouching on the couch, sleep at least 7 hours a night, and be kind to your body and mind as much as possible.
An accurate diagnosis is crucial in treating amenorrhea. If you do not know what is broken, you will not know what to fix. So you absolutely must consult a gynaecologist and undergo any tests that she suggests. Only after the condition has been diagnosed should any treatment be undertaken.
You may be prescribed HRT or hormone replacement therapy if you are diagnosed with hormonal problems. In rare cases, surgery may be required if the reason for no period is physiological.
If there is no underlying disease that is causing a woman to have no period, she can choose to opt out of treatment altogether if she is not concerned with having biological children.