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25 Reasons Why You’ve Got Cramps But No Period, According To Ob-Gyns

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In addition to the fact that you’re bloated moodiness, bloating, and sudden cravings for sugar The cramps are also among the most frequent indications that your period of the month is approaching very soon. Although not the most fun but they are an accurate indicator of when it is time to get your pads, tampons as well as the menstrual cup prepared. What if you experience menstrual cramps, but don’t have a period?

The first step is to be calm and doesn’t get caught up in a panic. There are a variety of reasons this might be happening, and some could be serious NBD. “Hormonal changes related to ovulation can affect some of the same pathways in your brain that might be affected by other medical conditions, causing mood swings that feel similar to your period but aren’t related to ovulation or menses,” states Chailee Moss, MD, an OBGYN in Johns Hopkins Medicine. In addition, physical anomalies in your ovaries and uterus may cause cramps that feel like the typical symptoms of PMS She adds.

 

However, if you’re worried, discuss it with your doctor. the issue. They’ll be able to help you determine the root of the problem and the steps you must do to restore your menstrual cycle in order.

 

If you’re still looking to find out what you might be suffering from, here’s an exhaustive list of possible causes that could be behind your cramps.

 

1. Anovulation

Every now and then your body undergoes every hormonal change related to pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS) but it does not release eggs during the month. This is known as an anovulatory period. And if you don’t release an egg during your cycle, you will not experience a period (but you might still experience menstrual cramps).

 

The frequency of anovulation is higher than you’d believe: “Ten to 18 percent of all regular cycles are anovulatory,” according to OBGYN from Chicago Jessica Shepherd, MD. Anovulatory cycles can occur at random times or be due to a different issue, such as nutrition or body weight, or you’re close to menopausal.

 

Although skipping your period every time is typically nothing to be concerned about however if you’re experiencing severe nausea, fever, nausea, or discomfort that cannot be controlled with standard OTC medication or doesn’t improve in a week’s time take a look at your physician immediately.

 

In addition, it’s recommended to consult your physician If you miss at least three times in one row, says Doctor. Shepherd.

 

2. Pregnancy

If you’ve experienced unprotected sexual activity within the last month or were lazy about taking your pills or are relying on the pullout method for birth control, you should consider having an ultrasound to determine if you are pregnant. A lot of symptoms of early pregnancy–including tenderness in the breast and emotional swings and fatigue and (you probably guessed it) cramping–are similar to the symptoms you’re likely to experience before as well as during the period.

3. Thyroid Conditions

It is your thyroid a tiny oval gland located within your neck, that is responsible for controlling various body functions such as your metabolism and menstrual cycle. If your thyroid becomes out of balance your menstrual cycles may be irregular, according to the doctor. Shepherd. In the end, you could go for a lengthy period without experiencing your period, but still experience menstrual cramps, says Dr. Moss.

 

Since your thyroid controls your brain’s functions and mood swings you believed were caused by PMS could be linked to your neurologic functioning as she clarifies. Also, cramping or spotting may result from the lining the uterus is forming but isn’t shedding because you’re not having ovulation.

It’s normal for thyroid disorders to be misdiagnosed or suffer from a delay in diagnosing in particular groups of minorities, according to Yasmin Akhunji, the MD an endocrinologist at Paloma Health. “Conditions like hyperthyroidism, or Grave’s disease, if it is caused by autoimmune factors, is more prevalent in Black and Asian communities in the U.S., especially among females,” Dr. Akhunji says. the doctor. Akhunji points to the findings of this study from 2016.

 

Hyperthyroidism is a condition where the body produces too many thyroid hormones, which can lead to more anxiety, insomnia, and tremors. It is a condition that is a problem that affects Black women twice as often as white women. “Asian and Pacific Islander-identifying women had a 78 percent increased risk of Grave’s disease compared to white women,” says Dr. Akhunji. The other condition, hypothyroidism or Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is characterized by a slow metabolism as well as fatigue, hair loss as well as, in some cases weight gain, which is believed to be more common among white women.

 

Make sure you check with your physician if experiencing any other signs of thyroid issues for instance, sudden and unproven weight gain or weight loss or shaking heart palpitations, or severe fatigue.

 

4. Hormonal Birth Control

A common side effect that is common side effect of hormone IUDs is that they skip your periods. It’s because one way the device can prevent pregnancy is through the thinning of the lining of the endometrial sac inside your uterus, so there’s nothing to shed during the last week in the middle of the month.

Although they don’t usually stop your flow completely Birth control pills may cause light flow or spots. You may experience signs of your period, such as breast tenderness and cramps regardless of having a heavy and full-blown cycle, says the doctor Dr. Shepherd.

 

5. Stress

Stress is a surprising reason for not having menstrual flow. “Stress increases your cortisol levels, which affects your hormone balance,” Dr. Shepherd. This includes the hormones which regulate your ovaries as well as your uterine liner. Yet, you could experience cramps.

 

Deaths, exams, the coronavirus epidemic as well as the current news cycle, and even divorces are stressful events that result in periods going off track. Even more subtle events such as juggling a lot at work can create an ongoing stress condition that impacts your body and mind, even though you might not even be aware of what it is.

“Some people don’t realize they’re so stressed, but once they talk about it, they realize they are going through something,” Dr. Shepherd says. Doctor. Shepherd. If you suspect that stress is disrupting your period, speak to your doctor. Exercise, therapy, yoga, and meditation are all a way to bring stress under control and get your period get back in order.

6. Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)

The frequent skip of periods could be an indicator of PCOS. “PCOS is a condition in which a patient has an excess of androgens, which are chemicals in the body that affect ovary function, hair growth, weight gain, and sensitivity to insulin,” Dr. Moss.

 

PCOS can cause anovulatory cycles as well as irregular spots. The most common cause is that cysts develop on the ovaries that, if ruptured or cause the ovaries to twist can trigger pelvic pain and discomfort that feels similar to cramps during menstrual cycles.

 

About 20% of women suffer from PCOS.

As high as 20 percent of women in the world suffer from PCOS as well, and it’s particularly prevalent for women who are overweight or have a mother or sister who suffers from the disease Dr. Moss says. PCOS isn’t necessarily more prevalent in any particular ethnic or racial group however the symptoms could be different between specific communities.

 

One research study discovered that Latinx individuals are more likely to suffer from more severe PCOS signs, like loss of hair in the head, unwelcome hair growth elsewhere, and even acne. Black patients who suffer from PCOS may be at a higher likelihood of developing heart diseases as well according to doctors. Shinji says. Furthermore, medical racism can be present; individuals who are of color may not have access to high-quality medical care for hormonal disorders such as PCOS, and health professionals may not be able to take BIPOC patients’ health issues seriously according to says Dr. Akhunji adds.

 

If you suspect you may have PCOS If you suspect that you are suffering from PCOS, consult your physician. Although there isn’t a cure, birth control and other medications can help you manage symptoms and help get your menstrual cycle back in order.

 

7. Uterine Polyps

It is possible to be able to connect polyps with the colon however, similar benign, small tumors can develop in the uterus. “It’s an overgrowth of the lining of the uterus,” the doctor Dr. Moss. A uterus is a place where polyps can cause cramping and discomfort similar to a period even if you’re not having a period.

 

Because polyps hinder the chances of getting pregnant and there is a chance that they will become uterine cancer later on at some point The doctor you see will most likely be able to remove them usually through a straightforward procedure called a Hysteroscopy. When you undergo a hysteroscopy, the doctor places a long tube that passes through the vagina before introducing it into the uterus. The doctor can utilize the scope to examine and then cut out the polyps.

 

8. Ovarian Cysts

Each month your ovaries produce numerous cysts to prepare for ovulation. But only one of them releases an egg. While the other cysts usually disappear independently before you have your period, occasionally a or more cysts (or more) persist.

 

Cysts can also be a result of you are experiencing anovulatory cycles (such as PCOS). Ovarian cysts usually don’t trigger any symptoms, but they may trigger period-like pain even if you’re not on your period. If you’re experiencing irregular cramps, don’t be afraid to talk to your doctor about it.

 

“Cysts in and of themselves aren’t usually a problem,” the doctor Dr. Moss. “But when they grow big, they may create an ovarian twist–a.k.a. an ovarian twist. This is pain-inducing and calls for an urgent procedure to keep your ovary from being damaged.”

9. Pelvic Inflammatory Disorder (PID)

Cramping is one of the most common symptoms of PID that is an illness of the fallopian tubes, the uterus, or ovaries. It generally is caused by sexually transmitted bacteria that are transmitted from your vagina to the reproductive organs of your body.

 

“Sexually transmitted infections such as chlamydia and gonorrhea are the typical culprits of this serious pelvic infection that can lead to pelvic pain and infertility,” says Sherry A. Ross, MD, an ob-gyn and the author of She-ology. “Make sure you’re getting regular STI checks between new sexual partners to ensure you are not a carrier of damaging STIs.”

 

10. Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)

A common symptom of UTI is pelvic cramps according to the doctor. Ross says. “Other symptoms include frequency, urgency, and pain and burning with urination, as well as bleeding with urination,” she says.

 

If you suspect your cramps may be connected with a UTI visit your ob-gyn physician or primary care physician immediately. If untreated the UTI can lead to an extremely serious kidney infection.

 

11. Mittelschmerz

If you’re experiencing PMS-like cramping as well as bloating, and breast tenderness, but you don’t have a period, it could be that it’s just not the right time to start your period, but it’s on the way.

 

German means “middle pain,” mittelschmerz is a common occurrence around the halfway point of the menstrual cycle, which is around day 14 when you begin to ovulate according to Nicole Scott, MD who is an ob-gyn physician who works at IU Health. It’s a totally normal experience–affecting about 20 percent of women–and it doesn’t mean anything is wrong, she says.

 

Because it’s your ovaries performing their job There’s nothing you can do to stop it. The symptoms will be gone in an hour or so. However, if you’re having cramps or experiencing discomfort that’s intensely painful or shows any indication of infection, consult your doctor Dr. Scott says.

 

12. Exercising Too Much

Going to the gym on a regular basis is among the best things you could do to combat PMS symptoms. But, exercising excessively or frequently can cause disruption to your cycle, and may in certain cases, you may skip your period completely the doctor. Scott says.

 

The physical strain and weight loss, particularly if you shed significant body fat, may cause your menstrual cycle to disappear AWOL and trigger abnormal fluctuations in the hormone levels. These fluctuations can trigger moodiness and unreliable spotting, acne, and other symptoms that mimic PMS (i.e. cramping but no actual menstrual cycle).

 

If, as mentioned earlier, you are not able to get your period for three or more cycles in a row, speak about it with your doctor.

 

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13. Certain Sex positions

It’s a bit of a paradox that something so pleasant can result in discomfort however “experiencing cramping or pain after sex is completely normal,” the doctor. Ross.

 

Why is this? “Some sexual positions are known to be anatomically harder on the vagina and female organs, including the uterus and ovaries,” she says. “For example, doggie style allows deeper penetration but can cause discomfort for many women, while missionary position tends to be easier and more comfortable for women.” Have a play with your partner and discover which positions are the most suitable for your physique.

 

“Sex postures that specifically shift the uterus can trigger an acute stabbing pain when ligaments are stretched. It could spread into the groin area,” states Greg Marchand who is an Arizona-based Ob-gyn. “Avoid repeating any movements that are painful and see your doctor if the pain continues the next day.”

 

14. Interstitial Cystitis

This condition which affects women more frequently than men may also trigger discomfort in the lower abdomen Ross, Dr. Ross says.

Also called The painful bladder syndrome Other symptoms of interstitial cystitis can be similar to the symptoms of urinary tract infections that include pelvic pain, discomfort between the anus and vagina for women, pain during ovulation, and an ongoing desire to go to the bathroom. The exact causes for this condition aren’t understood however, it is possible that it is due to an issue with the bladder lining (epithelium) in the bladder or an autoimmune reaction, allergies, or infection. It could also be inherited.

 

15. A Mishap

Miscarriages are more frequent than you may think. Each pregnant woman is at risk of the chance of experiencing an abortion as per Dr. Ross. The signs of a miscarriage could include menstrual cramps that are severe. If you’re pregnant, and you’re experiencing extreme cramping, consult your physician immediately.

 

16. Endometriosis

Endometriosis is a condition where tissue that is normally growing within the uterus expands outside of it. It is typically found in the pelvic region which can lead to significant cramping, according to the doctor. Ross.

 

The pain in the pelvis that is associated with endometriosis is different from normal PMS pain in that it usually appears days or even weeks before typical PMS cramps, and could last for days after your period has ended (so it’s like you will experience a handful of days without pain during your period). Cramping due to endometriosis is also free of other PMS symptoms, like mood fluctuations.

It could take years to receive an endometriosis diagnosis. “Black and Latinx populations are only about half as likely to be diagnosed with endometriosis. However, Asian women were more likely to be diagnosed with endometriosis when compared to white women,” states Jodie Horton MD and board-certified Ob-Gyn and chief Wellness Advisor of Love Wellness. A large part of this is to be due to racial prejudice according to Horton explains. Horton explains–Black patients’ suffering is often not addressed. BIPOC patients may have their endometriosis-related symptoms brushed aside or due to anxiety.

Another issue in diagnosing endometriosis comes from being aware that a wide range of ailments can trigger painful periods as well as pelvic discomfort. Endometriosis symptoms can differ from one person to the next. “A woman may have very few lesions and have severe symptoms compared to another woman who may have the severe disease may have no symptoms at all,” the doctor. Horton. Sometimes, it is necessary to undergo excision surgery to eliminate tissue and diagnose endometriosis.

 

17. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)

“Lower abdominal cramping is a common complaint in women suffering from IBS,” Ross claims. Based on research the women of Western countries are three to two times more likely to suffer from IBS than males.

 

The condition of the intestinal tract is often related to frequent stomach pains or problems as well as altered bowel habits for a minimum of three months. They can be characterized by constipation and diarrhea or the double whammy, which includes constipation as well as diarrhea (yes it is possible! ) The doctor. Ross says.

 

18. Ovarian Cancer

Ovarian cancer is extremely rare with only 19880 women annually in the U.S. It’s also one of the most deadly cancers that women suffer from that killing around 12,810 women every year, according to the American Cancer Society. The reason for this is that it typically does not show any, or only insignificant, symptoms Scott says. Scott says.

Bloating in the abdomen, urinary issues weight loss, and pelvic or abdominal pain are all possible signs of ovarian cancer. While not having your period isn’t the most frequent indication of cancer of the ovary but it could be one of them.

 

If you’ve been unable to get your period for a period of three months or more or if you’re experiencing other symptoms that are concerning, such as unanswerable pelvic pain, contact your doctor.

 

19. A ruptured cyst

Cysts, such as those caused by PCOS or an anovulatory period or even your ovaries’ fluid-filled sacs usually appear without any symptoms as per the National Library of Medicine (NLM). The thing is cysts may trigger the sensation of pressure, bloating swelling, and (Ding Ding, ding) menstrual pain, but not menstrual flow.

 

A stomachache or cramping without warning may indicate the possibility of ruptured cysts.

While cysts typically aren’t an issue, they could grow quite large and may rupture, causing sudden intense cramps that often occur along with vomiting and nausea, as per the NLM. Since it is contingent on the ovary in which you have (or have had) been affected by the cyst there is no definitive guideline for the location in your abdomen where you may experience discomfort.

 

20. The Pelvic Floor Muscle is Dysfunction

It is made up of muscles and other tissues that create a sling that runs across the pelvis, which binds the uterus, vagina, bladder, rectum, as well as other organs of the pelvis, according to the National Library of Medicine. Like any other part that you have, it is possible for your pelvic floor may become weak or injured in particular following childbirth and pregnancy, and can cause symptoms like pelvic pain or lower back pain and a feeling of fullness or pressure in your pelvis similar to those you feel in your period.

 

What is the most striking difference between menstrual discomfort? If you sense a bulge within the vagina, or in extreme cases, your organs begin pushing out from the vaginal opening as per the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) If you do, then you’re likely experiencing pelvic floor muscular tissues.

Other signs are pain during sexual activity, burning sensation in the vagina, and when taking a shower, peeing while you laugh, cough, or exercise, leaking stool, or having a hard time getting your bathroom trip in time. To figure out what’s wrong, ACOG says that your doctor typically performs tests of the rectal and vagina where you could be required to strain or cough in order to determine the extent to which you leak.

 

21. Ectopic Pregnancy

Simply put, an ectopic pregnancy occurs when an egg that is fertilized grows outside the uterus. It occurs about 90% of the time, in the fallopian tube as stated by ACOG. As the pregnancy progresses it could trigger the tubes to rupture and cause dangerous internal bleeding that requires urgent surgical intervention.

 

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In the beginning, this pregnancy could look and feel like a typical pregnancy due to indicators such as the absence of your period, the tenderness of your breasts, and an upset GI system. There are also signs of lower back pain, abdominal pain, and pelvic discomfort (think: cramping)–all of which aren’t enough to know whether it’s experiencing an Ectopic pregnancy or a normal one.

 

As the fetus develops and develops, more severe, distinct symptoms could begin to manifest like abrupt and intense pelvic or abdominal pain shoulder discomfort, weakness, dizziness, or fainting, according to ACOG. If you notice any of these symptoms, it is recommended to visit your doctor or go to the ER immediately.

 

22. Appendicitis

This distressing scenario occurs when the one end of the appendix is blocked by an object, such as the poop. Yes, that’s right: the poop. A blockage within this small tube-like organ could lead to infections and then discomfort around your belly button that becomes more pronounced and gets worse. It can also lead to pain in the left, lower portion of your abdomen, as per the NLM.

However, unlike cramps associated with menstrual cycles, the pain caused by appendicitis is usually felt fast and could be more severe if you cough, wheeze or walk. Other symptoms that distinguish the symptoms of this condition from those of your period are nausea, fever, and vomiting. All of these indicate that you need to visit the doctor’s office or ER whenever you can to get treatment, but hopefully before the appendix ruptures.

 

23. Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD)

In contrast to IBS, IBD is an umbrella term that refers to a range of ailments, including Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis which are characterized as chronic inflammation of the GI tract. While the exact reason for the condition is not known, IBD is thought to be the result of the immune system reacting in a way that is not appropriate to triggers that create inflammation, according to the CDC.

 

The pain and cramps caused by IBD can vary depending on the type of diagnosis. For patients suffering from Crohn’s the pain is usually localized to the lower right area of the abdomen. In patients with ulcerative colitis, the pain can be felt to the left.

If you’re suffering from IBD, it’s likely that you’ll be suffering from different GI systems that aren’t cramping, like chronic diarrhea (which could be bloody) and weight loss, and excessive gas, according to The Cleveland Clinic says. In order to diagnose an inflammatory bowel disorder, the doctor will most likely recommend the patient to a gastroenterologist who might request stool samples, blood tests, and an endoscopic examination.

 

24. Lactose Intolerance

If you’re unable to digest foods that contain lactose, the sugar in milk, and milk-based products, you’ll experience gas and bloating, diarrhea, and discomfort. The feeling of being sick to your stomach could be similar to the cramping and bloating that you are experiencing when you’re going through your period, however, they’ll go away in several hours, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

 

You can keep a food journal to identify patterns of when you are feeling crampy and the food you ate. This will allow you to determine if intolerance to food is the primary cause.

 

25. Indigestion

Stomach cramps, especially on your stomach and upper abdomen, that began just after (or even while) eating? Indigestion, typically immediately after or shortly after eating could be the cause. Other signs include burning, heat, or pain around the stomach button as well as the bottom portion of the breastbone. There is the unpleasant feeling of fullness immediately following an eating session, gastric discomfort, and nausea, as per NLM. The NLM.

 

The majority of the time it is not an indication of a major health issue, but you may need to reduce the speed of your food intake and avoid sitting down right after eating a large meal.