Is your period late? You’re not alone. Women around the world have experienced this at least once in their lives.
It can induce feelings of hopefulness, or you could be a little scared. Maybe you’re experiencing both emotions.
Either way, we’re here to help you learn more about the causes and effects of a late period.
Why is Your Period 3 Days Late?
How Should You Handle it? What Actions Can You Take? Follow this Guide for More Information.
There are several reasons you could be experiencing a late period. Most people jump to pregnancy as the cause right away. While this could be true, it isn’t always the case.
Other variables like stress, health conditions, weight loss, weight gain, exercise, hormones, birth control, menopause, and simple miscalculations come into play.
1- Have You Been Feeling a Little Off Lately? Are You Stressed Out? Your Period is Severely Affected by Your Stress Levels.
Stress affects several aspects of our lives, and people are more stressed than ever. It is one of the leading causes of late periods.
According to Healthline, stress affects your hypothalamus, (the part of your brain that’s responsible for regulating your period).
Have you been feeling extra anxious lately? Stress could be throwing off your cycle.
Try breathing techniques or guided meditations to lower your stress levels and get your body back into balance.
Check out this guided meditation video. It is a fantastic way to unwind at the beginning and end of each day.
2- What About Chronic Health Conditions?
How Do They Affect Your Period? Which Health Conditions Receive the Most Blame?
Speaking of stress, certain health conditions can also impact your menstrual cycle. However, there is no reason to excessively worry or start googling diseases.
Do You Have Polycystic Ovary Syndrome? This Condition Seriously Impacts Thousands of Women Each Day. How Can it Affect Your Period?
Conditions like PCOS, (Polycystic ovary syndrome), affect many women during their reproductive age.
Polycystic ovary syndrome is often diagnosed in women who have irregular or long-lasting periods.
According to the Mayo Clinic, it also causes excessive amounts of androgen, (male hormone).
The Mayo Clinic also states that Polycystic ovary syndrome causes fluid collection in the ovaries. As a result, your ovulation cycle may be thrown off.
It can be developed during adulthood. This is often the result of substantial weight-gain. However, women may be diagnosed as early as their teens.
How Does Your Thyroid Gland Alter Your Menstrual Cycle? What is the Thyroid Gland? Have You Ever Heard of it?
Hypothyroidism or Hyperthyroidism can both cause late or missed periods. Your thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in your throat. It regulates hormones and metabolism.
Hypothyroidism means your thyroid is underactive. Symptoms include weight gain, fatigue, and hair loss.
Hyperthyroidism is when your thyroid is overactive. You may feel anxious. Many people have trouble sleeping as a result. You may also lose weight quickly.
Do You Have Diabetes? Have You Been Diagnosed with Celiac Disease? People Who Suffer from These Chronic Conditions Feel Major Health Effects.
Any major change in your blood sugar can trigger hormonal imbalances. People with either of these conditions often experience late periods. They may even miss their cycles.
Additionally, inflammation from celiac disease can damage your small intestine. When this occurs, essential nutrients are not absorbed properly. This can lead to irregular periods.
It is vital to see your doctor if you feel you may have any of these conditions. They are treatable.
3- Severe Weight Issues May Cause a Three-Day Late Period.
Have You Experienced Extreme Weight Loss or Weight Gain? Both Life Changes Have Significant Impacts.
According to Femedic, sudden weight loss can cause a hormonal reaction. Every month, your hormones complete a process that induces your menstrual cycle.
If you’ve quickly lost or gained weight, your body’s hormonal cycles are interrupted.
When is Weight Loss the Culprit? Most People Say Weight Loss is a Good Thing. How Could it Affect Your Menstrual Cycle?
Weight loss can be beneficial in moderation. However, have you missed your period by a few days? You may not be eating enough.
If you’re trying to lose weight in an unhealthy way, you could miss 1 or more periods as a result. Don’t starve yourself. Your body could go into starvation mode and stop ovulating.
Eat nutritious and healthy foods as part of your fitness routine. Doing so should keep your menstrual cycle regular.
What if Your Weight Gain is Responsible for Your Late Period? How is This Possible? There are Several Reasons Weight Gain Can Throw Off Your Monthly Cycles.
Now, let’s say you have put on some major weight. Don’t be ashamed. However, this could also be causing your irregular periods.
When people gain large amounts of weight, their bodies become inflamed. Hormones called cytokines can develop because of this inflammation.
They can cause excessive production of testosterone. This hormone can actually stop your monthly ovulation.
Other hormones are produced when large amounts of fat cells are present. Your body may produce a hormone called estrone. It tricks your body into thinking it is pregnant.
Therefore, ovulation comes to a screeching halt. How weird is that?
4- How Do Extreme Exercise Practices Affect a Woman’s Periods?
Could it be the Reason Your Period is Three Days Late? How Can You Make the Right Changes to Prevent Irregularities in the Future?
The Cleveland Clinic says yes. Exercising too much is stressful for your body.
However, not exercising enough can lead to a late or missed period as well. As mentioned earlier, it is about finding balance.
Are You Exercising Too Much? You May Need to Tone it Down a Little. Too Much of a Good Thing Can be a Bad Thing.
It is common for women who are trying to get into better shape to over-exert themselves physically.
If you’re spending too much time at the gym, your period may be a few days late. This is the result of energy deprivation.
Your body can go into a state known as amenorrhea. It is a hypometabolic state. This means your metabolism slows down. Your body stops ovulating to conserve energy as well.
Try to cut down on the intensity of your workouts. It is also essential to incorporate healthy smoothies or shakes into your exercise routine.
Are You Not Exercising Enough? Try to Get up and Move! Find Your Healthy Balance.
If you do not prefer to exercise, you may reconsider your choices. Your body needs a balanced amount of exercise to function properly and regulate hormones.
When your period is a few days late, it may be because you need to get up and move!
Try exercising just 3 days each week. You don’t need to run a marathon. Simply start by taking 3 ten-minute walks per week to regulate your hormones and decrease some body fat.
5- How Do Hormones Affect a Woman’s Period? Which Hormones are to Blame if Your Period is Three Days Late?
We mentioned earlier how hormones set your body’s natural cycles in motion. Now, let’s discuss important hormones and how they affect your period.
The major hormones that affect your menstrual cycle are estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.
The Pelvic Expert says that your period may be late if these hormones are out of balance.
6- Is Birth Control Part of the Problem?
People Never Think it May Cause a Late Period. Why is That? Are All Types of Birth Control Possible Culprits?
Any medicine that affects your hormone levels can impact your cycle. Oral birth control pills are the most common culprit.
However, it is important to mention that birth control implants or injections can cause cycle irregularities as well.
How Does Birth Control Affect Periods? Some People Take Birth Control to Regulate Their Periods. Are Certain Hormones Involved? How Does it Work?
Each birth control pill contains specific levels of progestin and estrogen. Obviously, the goal of birth control is to prevent pregnancy. It prevents your ovaries from releasing eggs each month during ovulation.
Oral contraceptives also target your uterine lining. They cause it to become thinner, which makes it difficult for any fertilized eggs to attach to it.
They also thicken your cervical mucus. This process makes it nearly impossible for the sperm to reach the egg.
Certain birth control pills are different. They are known as seasonal pills. They often cause missed or late periods. Women who take these usually experience only 4 periods each year.
If you have missed a dose, you may be pregnant. However, this is rare. Missing a birth control pill can also cause irregular periods. It is best to see your doctor to determine the definite cause.
Have you recently stopped or started taking your birth control? According to Medical News Today, if you’ve just started your regimen, it may cause a late period. However, stopping your doses will have a larger impact.
Let’s say you have stopped taking your birth control. It may take as long as 6 months for your cycle to regulate itself again. This is completely normal.
7- Could the Cause be Menopause?
People Always Think Women with Menopause are Older. Why Would You be Experiencing Symptoms?
Women are usually 45 to 55 years old before they begin menopause. According to Womens Health, the average age women enter into menopause is 52.
It marks the end of their reproductive cycle in life. However, some women begin menopause as early as 40. This is known as peri-menopause.
During pre or peri-menopause, your supply of eggs starts to decrease. This process can cause light, late, or even missed periods. Eventually, you stop menstruating altogether.
8- Did You Miscalculate?
It is Easy to Lose Count and Lose Track of When Your Next Period Should Start. It Would Be an Easy Problem to Fix.
The answer could be simple. You may have just miscounted the days until your next period.
A healthy menstrual cycle occurs every 28 days. There are several easy mistakes to make when calculating your next period.
Are you counting 28 days from the first day of your last cycle? Do you remember when you last started?
This is essential to accurately decipher when your next period should occur. You must also consider any extra days.
For example, some months contain 31 days instead of 30. It would be a simple mistake to make.
9- Are You Pregnant? Do Not Let This Scare You or Give You False Hope.
Here is Some More Information to Help You Along the Way.
This is the big one. You may be wondering if you are pregnant. There are several factors that could lead to a positive pregnancy test after a late period.
Ovulation occurs approximately 14 days after the first day of your last menstrual cycle.
If you were sexually active anywhere near that time frame, you could be pregnant. However, if you are on birth control, your chances are significantly lower.
If you are only 3 days late, you should consider waiting to take a pregnancy test.
HCG, (human chorionic gonadotropin), is a hormone that is produced after egg implantation.
Pregnancy tests are made to detect this hormone. It is rare for store-bought pregnancy tests to detect HCG 3 days after a missed period.
Consider waiting until you are 5 days late. This is the best time to test yourself. If your test shows positive, make an appointment with your doctor for a blood or urine test.
What Are the Early Symptoms of Pregnancy? How are They Different from Pre-Menstrual Symptoms? When Should You See a Doctor?
Pregnancy symptoms can be extremely similar to pre-menstrual symptoms. According to We Have Kids, these symptoms differentiate pregnancy from PMS, (premenstrual syndrome).
They usually begin 1 to 2 weeks after your first missed period. Keep an eye out for them.
Spotting can occur in the early stages of pregnancy. It is much lighter than menstrual bleeding.
Pre-menstrual symptoms do include fatigue, but it usually secedes after your period begins.
Nausea predominates many early pregnancies. It is not commonly associated with PMS.
Intense Food Cravings
We all know that chocolate cravings are a sure sign of an upcoming period. However, pregnancy food cravings are especially strong.
Nothing in the world will be able to stop you from getting the food you crave.
So, Why is Your Period Three Days Late?
Here are Some Final Thoughts for You to Consider. When Should You See a Doctor for Further Evaluation?
Late periods have stressed women out since the beginning. Are you trying to conceive?
The hope of a new baby can be exciting and scary at the same time. Every day feels like an eternity.
If you are trying to not get pregnant, a late period may be even scarier.
It is frustrating no matter what your situation is. However, several factors play into a late or missed period.
Stress, birth control, health conditions, miscalculations, hormonal imbalances, menopause, weight, and exercise can all affect your period.
Stress is the most important factor to remember. It messes with your hormones; therefore, your period may be late as a result.
Chronic conditions like diabetes, celiac disease, hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism lead to inflammation and affect your period as well.
Birth control has a major effect on your cycle. Stopping, starting, or missing doses can lead to hormonal imbalances and sporadic menstrual patterns.
Any hormonal imbalances of estrogen, progesterone, or testosterone may cause irregular cycles.
When women enter pre-menopause, their periods get lighter and more sporadic. It is not uncommon to experience late periods during this transition.
Other factors like weight and exercise can affect your menstrual patterns. Extreme exercise, obesity, and weight loss may throw off your hormone levels.
Many of these causes and symptoms are treatable. Living a healthy and balanced lifestyle is the best way to keep your cycles regular.
No matter what, it is important to see your doctor if you miss your period. If it is only 3 days late, wait a few more days.
If you think you may be pregnant, make an appointment for a blood or urine analysis.