How long can stress delay your period?

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Stress has an important role to play in all the important functions of the human body. Stress has psychosomatic effects. We are well aware of the negative effects of stress such as headaches, muscle tensions, upset stomach, sleep problems etc. The situation gets worse off with increasing stress and passing time. As the stress builds up, all the functions of the human body are affected.

Females have different anatomy than men. As observed in several studies, females are more prone to stress compared to men. A common variant function of the female body is a menstruation cycle.


The menstruation cycle is the regular change that happens in the reproductive system in the female body. The ideal time interval between two menstrual cycles lies between 28 to 35 days. Various neurological factors affect the flow and gap between the cycles. Stress has a major role to play in determining the time of periods. How long can stress delay period depends on several factors which vary from person to person.

The relation between stress and periods

Differences in the length of stress can affect our bodies in different ways. Stress results in increasing the production of several hormones in the body to deal with the stressful situation. The stress hormone cortisol directly impacts the level of production of progesterone. This may suppress the normal levels of reproductive hormones. It affects your flow, the length of the cycle and the date it arrives. Stress from traumatic events results in negative changes in the normal menstruation.

Several research carried at the time of war indicates that female survivors suffer from amenorrhea. Stress is also associated with premenstrual syndrome. Stress from the previous month may result in dysmenorrhea. The more the stress, the more is the pain during the initial days of the period.

Our hormonal cycle is a continuous cycle. One reaction in our body affects the other functioning of the body. If one period cycle gets disturbed the consecutive cycles in the upcoming months remain disturbed.

Stress can lead to delayed period and often delayed period leads to stress. This is a vicious cycle which goes on negatively affecting the female health. Early signs should not be ignored. If the cycle is missed once and you are not sexually active, then you should consult your gynecologist.

Specific ways in which stress affects period

Lowers Progesterone

The stress hormone cortisol blocks the production of reproductive hormones progesterone. When our body is in a stressful situation, our body uses progesterone to make stress hormones. This not only results in delayed periods but in the long term, it can result in problems in conceiving.

Delays ovulation

Stress delays ovulation. This is the way to keep energy reserved in order to cope up with stress. As a result, the period cycle gets disturbed.

Changes period timing

Stress during the period can have hormonal effects. You get more cramps, body ache, irritation etc. The time duration of your cycle may be longer than the normal.

Missed period

A late period is not always ovulation. It’s a breakthrough bleed. You do not ovulate but still, the uterus needs to shed the lining. This may lead to complications at the time of conception.

Maximum delay in period when not pregnant

The first question that arises in your mind when you miss periods is regarding the possibility of being pregnant. Most of the pregnancies are unplanned. Even when you take precautions chances of pregnancy are still there. You need to be sure first that you are not pregnant. If your period gets delayed without pregnancy then stress may be the cause.

The stress may be emotional. It may be a result of a breakup, final exams or depression. Or, the type of stress may be physical such as severe illness, rapid weight loss or weight gain, extreme exercising, etc.

A period can be late by a week and in extremely stressful situations it may even stop. Normally, period change in duration somewhat in every cycle. This much delay is totally normal.

Women who are involved in taking drugs or birth control may face a delay of the period by a week. Such changes are common effects of pills so it’s not a cause of worry.

Maximum late in period can vary from three weeks to even months. It varies from person to person. If you have regular periods, then a delay of a week or two is a sign that something is wrong. However, if your cycle varies from month to month then you should wait a little longer.

When should you start to worry?

Worrying about periods would not result in time periods. One thing you can do for your health is to not worry. Worrying isn’t the solution to anything. On the other side, of you worry much it will lead to further stress. Stress will result in a delayed period, which may cause more stress. You will get trapped in the vicious cycle of stress.

You should definitely worry if you are doubting an unplanned pregnancy. Get a pregnancy test done. All the kits do not provide 100% results. Don’t just rely on one test. Repeat the test for a few weeks just to be sure.

You should get medical assistance if the period gets delayed every month or if you miss periods for a month or so. This may be an indication of some serious complications. It’s better to be sure than sorry. Do not take medications without a prescription from the doctor. There are progesterone tablets for withdrawal bleeding but it’s not the right thing to be dependent upon. Your periods should occur naturally.

The female body has its complications. Each function is intricately linked to the other functions. A delay in period can arise due to many factors such as a change in climate, diet, exercise, stress etc. If your period gets delayed by a month, you should seek a gynecologist. The best thing is to get an ultrasound done and know the problem. If you know the problem beforehand the treatment would be better.

Can stress cause period?

Extreme stress may sometimes result in bleeding. But it should not be confused with periods. It’s the spot which is much lighter than the normal period. Spotting can occur multiple times a month if you are facing extreme stress. It is not a normal function of the body to shed blood in parts.

You should consult your gynecologist if spotting persists for many times. In many few cases, it is found that stress can even prepone your periods. Stress can do anything to your body. The best you can do is to take care of your physical as well as mental health.

Missed period due to stress, when will it come?

You missed your periods because of stress in the first place. It is clear that curing stress will make your cycle normal. You should not find ways on random websites to get periods fast. Instead, you should focus on the main problem. No one better knows the cause of your stress than you. If the situation is under control of your own actions, then it’s the best.

However, if you feel you are unable to recover then seek help. Take the help of therapies. Talk about what is stressing you out. Avoid taking pills to control stress. Stress can be cured with the help of proper exercising, extra activities, balanced diet etc.

If you are facing prolonged stress then finding an effective coping mechanism from an expert will surely help. Once your stress is cured, your cycle will automatically revert back to its normal state.

It’s not possible to be stress-free in a day to day life. But what is possible is your reaction to the events. You can control what makes you stressed out and what not. Don’t let anything get into the way in your health. As soon as you learn to manage stress, a delayed period will not be a problem for you.

What can you do for yourself?

It’s your body. Doctors can’t make you healthy if you do not take your own responsibility. You know your body better than others. Instead of running behind temporary solutions, treat the problem totally. Delayed period often caused by stress cannot be cured without treating stress in the first place. If your cycle is already late, at least you can ensure to make sure it is a time the next time.

Stress may be due to several issues. Sometimes the situation is out of our control. Make sure that you learn to deal with stress. Don’t let stress affect your body badly. Treat it before it’s too late. Proper diet and exercising on a regular basis will alleviate stress.

Along with it, there are plenty of ways to take care of your health. Some of them are as stated below –

Focus on your diet

Taking proper nutrients will ensure a healthy flow. It will keep you fit and active. Your balanced diet supports the production of adrenaline. It in turn combats the cortisol ultimately reducing the level of stress. Eating the right food makes all you the difference. However, eating junk foods can worsen the situation. Substitute junk food with fruits and fruit juices.

Stay hydrated

Keeping your body hydrated can do wonders to your body. The more fluid you will take the more easily your body waste will be eliminated. Having a glass of lukewarm water can reduce cramps. Though you may already feel bloated, drinking water will make you feel better and lighter. Add some mint or flavor your water to enjoy your drink. Don’t force yourself to drink, just try to drink more water.

Avoid caffeine

No matter how much addicted you are to caffeine, try to avoid it when you are on your periods. Although you may feel that a cup of your favorite coffee will make you feel better but trust me it won’t on these days. Caffeine makes you feel bloated, irritable and achy. Also, you may not get proper sleep due to caffeine.

Sleeplessness at night may make it harder for you to deal with the cramps. Caffeine is not only present in tea and coffee but also in soda, cold drinks and even in chocolates. Grab a piece of dark chocolate if you are craving for chocolates. Dark chocolate soothes your mood.

Keep moving

I know it feels like laying on the bed the whole day but it would deteriorate your condition. Keep moving, do light exercises, do some yoga. Or else just try to walk a bit. The more your body will be active the more properly blood will be circulated. Additionally, exercising has wonderful effects on your mood. You will end up feeling a lot happier than you were in your cozy bed. Several yoga postures are evident for reducing cramps, so follow it up.

Make hot water bags your best friends

Hot water bags reduce your cramps. You need it the most at this time. Taking pills for dealing with cramps is not good for your body for the long term. You will feel soothed and better after hugging your hot water bag. Keep it on your abdominal area. Also, hot water bag will result in the elimination of the blood faster. Your muscles won’t have to struggle to break the blood lining.

Stay in a cooler temperature

Staying in a hot temperature will make you feel more irritable. You will experience more mood swings and irritation. Instead, try to be at a cooler temperature. Wash your face more often to feel fresh. Try to avoid direct sun. Be in your place of comfort.

Staying in a hot temperature will make you feel more irritable. You will experience more mood swings and irritation. Instead, try to be at a cooler temperature. Wash your face more often to feel fresh. Try to avoid direct sun. Be in your place of comfort.

Along with all of it, try doing more things which makes you happy. Giving time to your hobbies will make you feel better. Spend time with your loved ones. Mood swings are normal. You cannot totally control how you feel but you can definitely make yourself feel better. It’s your body if you won’t take care of it who else will?

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