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She Missed Her Period - Is She Pregnant?

By Richard Banks 06/08/2012 7:49 AM

Maybe dreaded, maybe thrilled - a missed period can mean so much to a couple. If the couple has no thoughts about conceiving a child, the mention of her missed period may be a bit to digest. However, if you've been trying to conceive and she finally missed a period, don't immediately think she is pregnant. There are tons of reasons why she missed her regular menstrual cycle. 

The Female Body and How Menstruation Works
Menstruation is the shedding of the lining of the uterus. That lining grows thick each month hoping to provide a safe, nourishing bed for a fertilized egg. When the egg is implanted, a hormone is released that keeps the lining in place for the duration of the pregnancy. That lining is the lifeline of the fetus, or zygote in the beginning weeks, until the umbilical cord and placenta are formed. 

Now, if she misses her period, you may be thinking that the egg implanted and you are going to be the daddy to a bouncing baby in about a year - but that is not always the case. She can miss her menstrual cycle for more than one reason.

Diet and exercise impact menstruation. If she's trying to lose weight to get in shape to improve fertility, her body changes could change her menstrual or ovulation cycle. 

That stress at work that you thought you were helping her relieve in the bedroom is not that easy to relieve. Stress is one of the number one reasons why women miss their period due date. 

Medications can also alter her menstrual cycle. If she has just started taking a new medication or she's stopped taking a regular medication, her body may need some time to adjust. This could be the cause of her missed period. 

Testing for Pregnancy is the Best Option
If she's missed her start date, she can use a home preganncy test to find out if she is pregnant. If the test reads negative - be patient - the tests are not always correct as hCG levels are lower in the very beginning. Wait a few more days and retest with first morning urine. If the test remains negative but her period does not come - make an appointment with the obstetrician for a blood pregnancy test.