For when that period is actually a question mark.
Most of us have a love/hate relationship with our periods.
We hate them and we never want to see them again, but… if we’re gonna see them again, we’d at least like to KNOW when we’re gonna see them again.
Which is what makes it even more frustrating when your period decides to go rogue and get all weird on you. Wtf, period.
Note: This is not an exhaustive list and is not meant to be a substitute for medical advice. If your period is acting weird, call your doctor.
OK, are you sure you’re not pregnant?
This is obviously this first thing you’ll want to cross off the list, even if you’ve been super careful or using birth control. “Half of all pregnancies in the U.S. are unplanned,” Dr. Mary Jane Minkin, clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Yale School of Medicine, tells BuzzFeed Health.
And it’s not just late or missing periods that could signal pregnancy. You can also get irregular bleeding at the beginning of a pregnancy, which many people mistake for an early period, says Minkin. So if your period is early/late/missing, and it’s even remotely possible that you could be pregnant, go ahead and pee on a stick.
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Maybe you’re just really stressed.
Fun fact: Ovulation actually starts in the brain with the pituitary gland. Things like stress, anxiety, travel, moving — those can all throw off the connection between the pituitary gland and your ovaries, Dr. Lauren Streicher, associate clinical professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Northwestern University and author of Sex Rx, tells BuzzFeed Health. And when the ovulation cycle gets screwed up, so does your period.
BUT stress will not affect your period if you’re taking hormonal birth control. That’s because contraception like the pill, ring, implant, and IUD all work to regulate your cycle. So if you’re on hormonal birth control, ovulation wouldn’t be the one giving you a monthly period — your birth control would be, says Minkin.
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