Why Is My Period Late On Birth Control
Contraceptives can help regulate your periods, but other factors including stress, diet, and changes in weight can still affect your menstrual cycle. It’s also possible to experience oligomenorrhea, infrequent or abnormally light bleeding, while using contraceptives.
Other Ways To Skip Your Period
Taking birth control pills arent the only way to skip your period. Other options include the progestin-releasing intrauterine device , progestin injection , progestin implant , and the combination NuvaRing or contraceptive patches.
If you arent sure about the pill, speak with your doctor about your other options. Make sure you speak with your doctor before using a birth control patch to skip your period. Compared to birth controls pills, the patch has a slightly increased risk for blood clotting. However, the patch is the same general formulation as combination pills.
How Soon Can You Take A Pregnancy Test
The sensitivity of each pregnancy test is variable, but the soonest the most sensitive test can detect a pregnancy is at least 12 days after conception. Conception happens around the time a woman ovulates and, in a typical 28-day cycle, ovulation happens on or around day 14. This means that if you have a 28-day cycle, the earliest time you can take a test and get an accurate result is four weeks after the first day of your last period.
Long and Irregular Cycles
Many women have long or irregular cycles. If you have not been carefully tracking your ovulation cycles, or if you cant predict it, it is hard to say when the earliest possible time is for an accurate result is. For women with long or irregular cycles, or if you dont know exactly what your cycle is, it is best to wait for the day the next cycle is supposed to begin to take the home test.
Wait a Week
Its hard to play the waiting game, but try to wait for a week to see if your period starts. If not, take a new test.
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Dont Rush The Process
Wait until you have to pee naturally, and not right after consuming a lot of liquids. Just pee normally, following the instructions, and then set the test aside and wait the full amount of time suggested.
Staring at the test anxiously can cause you to react too soon, or even throw it away before its done processing. It can also lead to dropping, bumping, or damaging the stick, making the whole ordeal a waste of time.
Its always best just to wait patiently, as hard as that may be.
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What Are The Reasons For 12 Days Late And A Negative Pregnancy Test
There may be many reasons for getting a negative pregnancy test after twelve days late periods:
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You Didnt Follow Instructions Correctly
Read the instructions on your home pregnancy tests package carefully so that you can administer the test properlythe test is only as good as your ability to follow the instructions! Since the tests are qualitative, this makes them sensitive to the process of testing.
Most home pregnancy tests ask you to hold a test strip in urine, and pee on it while on the toilet. Some make you dip the test strip in a clean cup where you have collected the urine .
These are the main reasons for a missed period and negative pregnancy test but there are others. Periods can be late for a number of reasons.
Youre In Early Menopause
Early menopause, also known as premature ovarian insufficiency, happens when your ovaries stop working before you turn 40.
When your ovaries are not working the way they should, they stop producing multiple hormones, including estrogen. As your estrogen levels drop to all-time lows, you will begin to experience the symptoms of menopause.
Late or missed periods may be an early sign. You may also experience:
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Taking A Home Pregnancy Test Too Soon
Another reason for a false negative pregnancy test may simply be that you took the test too early. Pregnancy tests vary in how soon they can detect hCG in your urine. It is possible that although an egg may be fertilized, your body has not started secreting enough hCG to register as positive on a test. Your body needs time for the hormone to rise to a high enough level to be detected. Most brands instruct you to wait until the first day of your missed period to test. Remember, hCG rises differently in each woman. If you suspect you are pregnant, even though the test is negative, the test should be repeated in one week.
If you are trying to conceive and your period is more than one week late with a negative pregnancy test, you should consider consultation with a fertility doctor so that you can be properly evaluated and treated, if necessary.
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You Are On Contraceptives Pills
Contraceptive pills, when taken continuously for months, inhibits ovulation and stop your period from coming.
How does contraceptive pills work?
Contraceptive pills work by maintaining blood concentration of estrogen and progesterone, thereby inhibiting hormones that cause ovulation.
If youre on continuous COC pills like seasonale and seasonique, which are taken non-stop for 84 days, your period could be delayed for months.
Regular pills are taken for 21 days then a free 7 days period. If you are on active pill on your free days, it will delay your period from coming.
Nevertheless, your seven days past due period may possibly be as a result of pregnancy. This happens if you had missed your medications for days to weeks with unprotected intercourse.
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Change In Your Schedule
Minor changes in your schedule arent going to have an impact on your menstrual cycle but intense ones, like switching to the night shift or having jet lag from traveling across the world , can. The good news is that its temporary. Once your body acclimates to your new schedule, your periods should resume as normal. If they dont, its worth calling your doctor about.
What Are Regular Periods
Most girls get their first period between the ages of 10 and 15, but some get it earlier and some later. The first period is known as menarche .
A girl’s monthly cycle is the number of days from the start of her period to the start of the next time she gets her period. You often hear this is a 28-day cycle. But 28 is just an average figure that doctors use. Cycle lengths vary some are 24 days, some are 34 days. And a girl may notice that her cycles are different lengths each month especially for the few years after she first starts getting her period.
Early in a girl’s cycle, her ovaries start preparing one egg. At the same time, the lining of the uterus becomes thick to prepare a nesting place for a fertilized egg in the event that the girl becomes pregnant.
About 2 weeks before a girl gets her period, the egg is released from the ovary . The egg travels through the fallopian tube into the uterus. If the egg isn’t fertilized by sperm, it starts to fall apart. Then the lining and egg leave a girl’s body as her period and the whole thing starts all over again that’s why we use the word “cycle.” The first day a girl’s period comes is Day 1 of her cycle.
It’s also normal for the number of days a girl has her period to vary. Sometimes a girl may bleed for 2 days, sometimes it may last a week. That’s because the level of hormones the body makes can be different from one cycle to the next, and this affects the amount and length of bleeding.
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The Ovulation Cycle Divided Into Two Parts:
- The first part of the cycle is called the follicular phase. This phase starts the first day of the last menstrual period and continues until ovulation.
This first half of the cycle can differ greatly for each woman lasting anywhere from 7 days to 40 days.
- The second half of the cycle is called the luteal phase and is from the day of ovulation until the next period begins. The luteal phase has a more precise timeline and usually is only 12-16 days from the day of ovulation.
This ultimately means that the day of ovulation will determine how long your cycle is. This also means that outside factors like stress, illness, and disruption of normal routine can throw off your cycle which then results in changing the time your period will come. So the old thought that stress can affect your period is only partly true. Stress can affect your ovulation which ultimately determines when your period will come, but stress around the time of an expected period will not make it lateit was already determined when it would come 12-16 days earlier!
Fertility Awareness is one way to track when ovulation occurs, and it includes noticing the changes in cervical mucus and using a basal thermometer. Cervical fluid will change to a wet, slippery substance that resembles egg whites just before ovulation occurs and until it is over. A basal thermometer helps track a body temperature rise, which signals that ovulation has just occurred.
Im Not Pregnant So Why Have I Missed My Period
The most common assumption for a missed period is pregnancy. But if there’s no way you’re pregnant or your pregnancy test is negative, what else could be the cause of your missed period? There are a number of other reasons that could explain why youâve missed your period.
Other reasons for a late period if you are not pregnant include:
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Can A Pregnancy Test Be Negative 12 Days After Missed Period
However, it is common to get a false negative in the first few days after a missed period. The amount of hCG in your body increases daily in early pregnancy. If you test too early, there might not be enough hCG for a positive test. Testing one week after a missed period is most likely to give you accurate results.
Can a pregnancy test be negative after 10 days?
If taken correctly, these may deliver a positive result a day or two before your period is expected . But an early negative may be false. That means waiting another few days and re-testing. Consider whether that is worth your money and your emotional well-being.
You Are Pregnant With Twins Or Triplets
Carrying two or more babies causes a woman to produce very high levels of hCG and at-home pregnancy tests may not be able to detect it because theres actually too much. This is known as the high-dose hook effect.
Dr. Gronowski explains that hCG tests work by forming a sandwich with two antibodies as the bread and the hCG molecule as the meat. When the hCG concentration is too high, it saturates both antibodies, and there are so many molecules that the antibodies cant form a sandwich, resulting in a negative pregnancy result.
Some women report positive results after diluting their urine with water, however, a blood test at the doctors office is a better option for accuracy.
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The Best Time To Take A Pregnancy Test
If you have a regular menstrual cycle , then you are only at risk of pregnancy if you had unprotected heterosexual sex or had a high risk of sperm touching your genitals during your fertile window. This is the six days leading up to and including ovulation, usually around the middle of your cycle . You can take a pregnancy test about two weeks after your estimated ovulation day, but the earlier you take a test the less accurate it may be and some brands are more sensitive than others . You should probably take a pregnancy test or contact your healthcare provider if your period is nine or more days late.
If you have an irregular cycle , then unprotected sex or exposure of sperm on your genitals at most times represents a risk. You can take a pregnancy test about two weeks after your last unprotected sexual encounter, though the earlier you take a test the less accurate it may be and some brands are more sensitive than others .
If you get a negative result at first and your period still hasnât come after a week, you might want to try taking another pregnancy testâjust to be sure. The sooner you know if you are pregnant or not, the sooner youâll be able to develop a plan . You can get confidential testing and counseling in most healthcare providersâ offices and clinics.
What Is The Menopause
The menopause is when you have no periods and you will not be able to get pregnant naturally. This happens to women in their late forties to mid-fifties. Many women will notice that their periods completely stop, however others will see their periods become less frequents in the years and months leading up to the menopause.
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Rare Causes Of Test Malfunction
A rare, counterintuitive cause for a false negative is that you are too far along in your pregnancy. For example, if your period is weeks to months late, a pregnancy test might come up negative. This is called the variant hook effect.
Another unusual but possible reason for a false negative is that youre expecting triplets or even twins. In this case, a false negative pregnancy test can be caused by what is known as the high dose hook effect. Ironically, unusually high levels of hCG can cause a pregnancy test to give a false negative result.
A very rare cause of a false negative pregnancy test is when the hCG hormone in your body does not react with the anti-hCG chemicals in the test. In this case, you might need to wait a few more days before you can get a positive result or need to have a blood test.
You might ultimately need to have a serum pregnancy blood test or ultrasound to confirm pregnancy.
If you still havent gotten your period after a few more days, try the test again. If subsequent tests continue to show a negative pregnancy test result, youll want to talk to your healthcare provider about further testing.
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What To Do When Your Period Is Late
If your period is more than a week late and you got a negative pregnancy test, you may want to schedule an appointment with your health care provider to be safe. Your doctor can do a blood test to confirm that youre not pregnant.
If the blood test is also negative and your practitioner rules out any other possible concerns, its fine to sit back and go with the flow . Every woman skips a period now and then, especially if shes under stress or has been sick. Relax and do what you can to ease anxiety by eating right, getting enough sleep and exercising.
From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When You’re Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.
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Safety Of Skipping Your Period
There are a number of reasons why you may want to skip your period.
Its generally safe to do so if youre on birth control pills. However, its best to check with your doctor first. Youll want to make sure that theres no medical reason for you to continue with your current menstruation schedule.
Taking birth control pills to reduce or eliminate your period is just as safe as taking them in the conventional way, says Gerardo Bustillo, MD, OB-GYN, at Orange Coast Memorial in Fountain Valley, California.
Menstruation isnt physiologically necessary. In general, women today experience many more menstrual cycles over their lifetime compared to women of previous generations, says Bustillo. There are a few reasons for that, including the following:
- Many women today start menstruating at a younger age.
- Women today have fewer pregnancies on average.
- Women today dont breastfeed for as long.
- Women today generally reach menopause later in life.
According to Lisa Dabney, MD, assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology, and reproductive science at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, the monthly period that traditional birth control pills allow for may have had more to do with marketing than anything.
When the birth control pills first came out, they were designed for women to get their periods every four weeks like a natural period, she says. This interval is really set up by the cycle of the pills and was set up that way so women would more readily accept them.