It is fairly common to experience irregular menstrual cycles that likely happen due to lifestyle changes, erratic work hours or/and environmental factors, but missing periods (amenorrhea), especially for three or more months in one go, when one is not pregnant should be a cause for concern.
Absence of periods or amenorrhea, especially in young women, requires a thorough medical check-up.
Dr Shobha Gupta, medical director and IVF expert from Mother’s Lap IVF Centre shares some common reasons your periods might have suddenly stopped.
Severe stress can have a major effect on your periods. High levels of physical or emotional stress hormones, such as cortisol, in your body may interfere with menstrual hormones surges, resulting in a cycle that’s delayed or stopped.
Working out is good, but if you exercise too much or do it aggressively then your hormones will be disrupted in a way they are when you are stressed. Excessive workouts without taking in enough calories can cause disruptions in the body. If you are an avid gym-goer or athlete and have very little body fat, there is a good chance you will begin to skip periods and have anovular cycles too.
Excess or less body weight
We know not all fat is good, but some fat is essential. If your body weight sinks too low, you may stop ovulating. Being too thin can prevent a pregnancy when there is not enough food to sustain both you and the baby. In the same way, excess weight can lead to obesity thereby increasing your chances of being diagnosed with infertility. Keep a watch on your weight; too much body weight also disrupts your menstrual cycle.
You may have PCOS
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is very common today due to lifestyle habits. It’s an endocrine disorder that has many symptoms, such as lack of or irregular periods, ‘cysts’ in the ovaries, fertility issues and weight gain. It can also cause excess body hair, acne, thinning hair and depression. Not everyone shows all these signs; however it affects women in different ways. Untreated, it can sometimes lead to more serious conditions such as type 2 diabetes and heart problems, so don’t ignore it.
You could be going through premature menopause
Menopause is something that we associate with older women, but premature ovarian failure (POF) can happen to younger women, too. The exact cause of POF remains undetermined but changing food habits, work cultures with increased pressure and high stress jobs are some of the reasons of your sudden menopause.
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