What causes irregular periods, and when to see a doctor about them

Are your periods irregular? Find out what causes them and when you should speak to a doctor about them.

The average menstrual cycle is about 28 days (day one is when the bleeding starts). If your periods are regular on a 28-day cycle then your next period will be on the 28th day. There can sometimes be a delay of up to four days. But if your dates fluctuate more than four days then you are experiencing irregular periods.

In this article we’ll look at some the reasons why your periods may be irregular, when you should consult a doctor about irregular periods and how CBD oil can help with period symptoms. Plus you can find out how to know everything about the New York state medical marijuana application process before getting started.

What can cause irregular periods?

There are a number of things that can cause irregular periods. Here are five reasons you may not menstruate regularly.

1) Taking medications

Your menstrual cycle is controlled mainly by hormones like estrogen, progesterone, etc. If you are on medication, it can impact your hormones which can cause irregular periods. There is usually nothing to worry about much as your body should adjust to any changes. However, if the side-effects are unexpected or you are worried, always speak to your doctor.

2) Coming off birth control pills

Birth control pills help to prevent pregnancies, and can also be prescribed for irregular periods. When you’re on the pill you should usually experience regular periods, however it is common to have late, irregular, or even miss periods immediately after stopping hormonal birth control pills. It can take up to three months, and in some cases even six months for your menstrual cycle and fertility to return to normal.

3) Endometriosis

Endometriosis occurs when your endometrial tissue starts to grow outside your uterus. The endometrial tissue often attaches to your ovaries or fallopian tubes and can cause abnormal bleeding, cramps or pain before and during your periods.

4) Pelvic inflammatory disease

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) is a bacterial infection that affects your reproductive system. Symptoms of PID can include heavy vaginal discharge with an unpleasant smell, irregular periods, pain in your pelvic and lower abdominal areas, fever, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhoea.

5) Polycystic ovary syndrome

In polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), your ovaries make large amounts of androgens (male hormones). As a result, small fluid-filled sacs (or cysts) can form in your ovaries. The hormonal changes can stop your eggs from maturing, which means that ovulation might not happen consistently. This can result in irregular periods, or you may stop menstruating completely. 

When should you worry about irregular periods?

If your periods are irregular and you don’t know why that is it’s important to consult with your doctor as irregular periods make it difficult to conceive. If you are also taking birth control pills, it’s also essential to speak with your doctor about any changes.

If your irregular periods are caused by conditions like PCOS or thyroid problems your doctor will be able to help with a diagnosis and treatments. Irregular or missed periods can also be a symptom of uterine or cervical cancer.

If any aspect of your menstrual cycle changes then keep a record of when your periods begin and end. Also note the amount of flow and whether you pass large blood clots, plus any other symptoms, such as bleeding between your periods and menstrual cramps or pain.

When you see your doctor they’ll ask you about your menstrual cycle and medical history and perform a physical examination, including a pelvic exam and sometimes a smear test. If further investigation is needed they’ll also book you in for further tests.

As with all conditions, if there IS a medical reason for your irregular periods the sooner you are diagnosed and get it treated the better. So please don’t just hope your symptoms go away. It’s far better to see a doctor and be told you’re healthy than risk waiting until symptoms (and your condition) gets worse before you seek treatment.

How to use CBD oil to help with irregular periods

Once you’ve ensured there are no medical reasons for your irregular periods that need treating, you might want to consider using CBD oil for period symptoms like cramps. CBD oil has anti-inflammatory properties that are natural pain reliever. You can take CBD oil along with morning smoothies to get a pain-relieving boost throughout the day. In the New York state medical marijuana application process, you are asked whether you are a CBD user or not.