Having a uterus and a monthly menstrual cycle is a universal feminine characteristic. Every normal woman undergoes a menstrual cycle every month. However, it is believed that a regular menstrual cycle commonly called periods, is the indication of good health of a woman. The regular menstrual cycle refers to the duration of menstrual flow between 4 to 7 days and the reoccurrence of menses after 28 to 35 days. In some cases, regular periods can range between 21 days to 25 days. When a female encounters periods, an irregular menstrual cycle is common until a few months. Eventually, the menstrual cycle takes a regular time shape but, in many cases, the irregular cycle is constant.

A missed period arises many uncertain possible suspicions such as pregnancy, a disorder in the reproductive system, deficiency of certain nutrients, high stress, hormonal imbalance, or even malnutrition. It’s not necessary that any of the above-mentioned reasons is permanent but if irregularity continues, you should visit your healthcare provider.

According to known data, 5% to 30% of women deals with irregular or delayed period in their menstruating time span. Reasons for these abnormalities vary from woman to woman in the same way severity may be different in a different woman. Depending upon the factors, treatment or therapeutic approach also varies. You should always keep a record of your periods because if abnormalities are persistent then you must visit your gynecologist as soon as possible, to diagnose whether you need to be treated or not.

What is a menstrual cycle?

Your menstrual cycle comprises major hormonal changes and several other changes occurring inside the body in order to prepare your body for pregnancy. Ovaries release oocytes every month which eventually develop into eggs. If the egg gets fertilized with the sperm, it results in pregnancy, but if eggs remain unfertilized, they get denature. In the case of no pregnancy, regression occurs in all the changes happening within the body. The lining of the uterus ruptures and sheds along with the menstrual flow.

Mechanism of menstrual cycle

There is two most important hormone released by the pituitary gland. These hormones are FSH (Follicle stimulating hormone) and LH (luteinizing hormone). The pituitary gland receives stimulation after the release of GnRH (gonadotropin-releasing hormone), and then FSH is released from the small pituitary gland. FSH is responsible for the production of follicles (eggs) in the ovary. With the growth of the egg, the ovary which is also an endocrine gland releases estrogen to prepare the uterus for pregnancy.

As soon as the eggs are matured, estrogen levels rise in the blood. A high estrogen level signals the brain to stop the production of FSH and initiate the release of LH. LH induces the movement of eggs towards the fallopian tubes, where eggs wait for the sperm. If fertilization happens, ovaries produce progesterone hormone which is essential for the support of pregnancy.

In the other case, if eggs remain unfertilized, they denature. Estrogen and progesterone level starts depleting, and the uterine wall also shed off and starts bleeding. The menstrual flow starts coming out of the vagina in the form of blood along with several uterine tissues and ruptured eggs.

Factors responsible for delay in the menstrual cycle

There is no certain reason for delayed events, it could happen due to physiological reasons or due to external factors. Irregular periods can also happen because of some undiagnosed medical issues. Let’s discuss some potential factors affecting regular period

● Pregnancy is considered to be the most important factor in the case of missed periods. This is important to test with a pregnancy kit if intercourse has happened in the recent past.
● A lactating woman can miss her period due to the release of the prolactin hormone. This hormone suppresses ovulation, hence there would be no menstrual flow.
● A delayed period is very common in the woman approaching menopause. During this phase feminine hormones start depleting, therefore no menstrual flow happens.
● Even mild stress can cause a delay in the period because of the release of stress hormones. Stress hormone interferes with the release of GnRH thus interrupting in production of FSH.
● A disturbed lifestyle is also a major cause of delayed periods. Sudden increased weight also affects the periods.

Other than these factors several medical conditions are very much responsible for period irregularity. Let’s discuss the potential medical issues interfering with
the menstrual cycle

PCOD (Polycystic ovarian disorder) is a medical condition in which multiple tiny cysts are developed inside the ovary. Androgen (male hormone) is also produced which interfered with the process of ovulation, hence causing irregularity of period.

Thyroxine hormone is released by the thyroid gland which is involved in brain development and heart functioning. Dysfunction of thyroid hormone results in hypothyroidism or hyperthyroidism, these conditions directly affect brain function. The release of FSH is controlled by the brain, ultimately it is affected resulting in problematic periods.

Medicines such as birth control, antidepressant, and cancer medications have a great impact on the periods. These medicines highly interfere with the feminine

How to deal with the period problem?

● Stay physically active and exercise daily. Exercise maintains the body weight as well as proper brain functioning. Feminine hormones are ultimately dependent on proper brain functioning.

● Intake of a healthy diet along with fruits, green vegetables, and iron-rich food is mandatory.

● Stay away from packaged food because they are rich in harmful preservatives which interrupt the hormonal cycle within the body.

● Consult with your gynaecologist if your periods are irregular for several consecutive months. Some blood tests, ultrasounds, and other tests can be performed to check the possible reason for irregular periods.


Regular periods are the identity of good health of a woman. Normal periods are dependent on the proper contribution of the endocrine and exocrine glands of the body. Sufficient and timely production of FSH and then other feminine hormone is mandatory to keep periods on track. Several medical conditions and external factors can affect the regularity of periods. All you should do is remain indulged in a healthy diet and health regime. Stay connected with your gynaecologist to avoid the risk of severe disease.