Jun 09, 2014
Irregular Menstrual Periods.
Most women of child bearing age have between 10 and 12 menstrual cycles every year. This may be considered the “normal” but that is not to say that it has to be the normal for you. You may have only 6 to 8 periods per year and that is your “normal” and should be nothing to worry about. It is just how you are.
Menstrual cycles can only be considered irregular when they cease altogether for long periods and for no obvious cause only to return again sporadically and unpredictably.
Causes of Irregular Periods.
• During the first year or two after periods begin (the menarche) periods will be sporadic until hormones come into balance.
• Similarly, during the last year or two before the menopause it is normal that periods should become irregular before ceasing altogether.
• Pregnancy is the commonest cause for the cessation of periods but by no means the only cause. Home pregnancy testing kits are inexpensive and simple to use. A positive pregnancy test must be returned before one assumes one is pregnant.
• Increased dieting and weight loss can upset hormonal balance and bring about the temporary cessation of menstrual cycles.
• Sudden increase in exercising levels.
• Stress, anxiety, emotional upset, bereavement and loss such as being in exile or loss of freedom.
• The birth control pill and other hormonal contraceptives like the IUD, implants or the depot injection can cause periods to stop or become very irregular.
• Ovarian disease most particularly Polycystic Ovarian Disease (POD) can cause irregular periods. This may need an Ultrasound Scan to diagnose.
• Lactation or breast feeding can cause periods to be unpredictable.
• Any chronic illness or debility such as Cystic Fibrosis, Multiple Sclerosis, Tuberculosis, Diabetes or Crohns Disease can cause periods to be erratic or absent.
Deliberate Postponement of Periods.
Doctors are sometimes asked about ways to bring about a temporary cessation of menstruation. This may sometimes be desired to cover some special event such as a honeymoon or an important competition or occasion. Periods can usually be stopped indefinitely by the continuous use of the birth control pill. This would need to be of sufficient strength as not to allow for breakthrough bleeding.
If your periods have become irregular or have stopped altogether for no obvious reason and you are looking for answers to this then we are here to help you.