Irregular Periods: What are they, Pregnancy, Causes, Treatment and More

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Irregular Periods What are they Pregnancy Causes Treatment and More 4

Irregular periods are menstrual irregularities that are a common concern among women of reproductive age. Irregularities can take various forms, like variations in the length of the menstrual cycle, changes in the amount or consistency of menstrual flow, and fluctuations in the duration and intensity of menstrual bleeding. [1]

Ayurveda sees menstruation as a natural process that reflects the body’s overall health and well-being. Any irregularities here can indicate imbalances in the body, which must be addressed to ensure optimal health. [2]

We explore the causes and symptoms of irregular periods from an Ayurvedic perspective. We also look at Ayurvedic treatments and lifestyle modifications that can help regulate the menstrual cycle and promote overall reproductive health.

What are irregular periods?

Irregular periods refer to variations in the length, duration, and intensity of menstrual bleeding. Women typically experience menstrual bleeding every 21-35 days, with the average cycle length being 28 days. [14] However, some women may experience cycles that are shorter or longer than this, which is considered a variation of the normal menstrual cycle.

Irregular periods can take many forms, including: [1]

1. Missed periods

When a woman does not experience menstrual bleeding for a period, which is usually defined as missing at least one menstrual cycle.

2. Heavy periods

When a woman experiences excessive or prolonged bleeding during menstruation.

3. Light periods

When a woman experiences a shorter or lighter menstrual period than usual.

4. Irregular cycle length

When the length of the menstrual cycle varies from the usual range of 21-35 days.

5. Painful periods

When a woman experiences discomfort, cramping, or pain during menstruation.

6. Abnormal bleeding

When a woman experiences bleeding between periods or after sex.

What are the causes of irregular periods

Here are some of the most common reasons for irregular periods:

1. Hormonal imbalances

Hormonal imbalances can include polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and thyroid disorders. [3]

2. Stress

Stress can also cause changes in appetite, sleep patterns, and other lifestyle factors contributing to menstrual irregularities. [4]

3. Nutritional deficiencies

Iron deficiency and other essential nutrients can affect the menstrual cycle and lead to irregular periods. [5]

4. Medications

Medications like hormonal contraceptives and some antidepressants can affect the menstrual cycle and cause irregular periods. [6]

5. Menopause

As women approach menopause, the production of hormones that regulate the menstrual cycle declines, leading to irregular periods.[7]

6. Underlying medical conditions

Irregular periods can be a symptom of an underlying medical condition like endometriosis. [8]

Complications related to irregular periods

It’s crucial to know the following complications associated with irregular menstrual cycles and seek guidance.

1. Infertility

Prolonged irregular periods may indicate ovulatory dysfunction, in which the ovaries fail to release eggs regularly. It can impact fertility and may lead to difficulties in conceiving. [16]

2. Anemia

Excessive blood loss during irregular periods may deplete iron levels and result in fatigue and weakness. [17]

3. Endometrial issues

Irregular periods, if associated with prolonged gaps between cycles, can result in irregular shedding of the uterine lining (endometrium). It increases the risk of endometrial hyperplasia or endometrial cancer. [18]

4. Hormonal imbalances

Chronic irregularities in menstrual cycles may signal hormonal imbalances, like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). Hormonal imbalances can affect reproductive health and have broader implications for the endocrine system.

What is the treatment for irregular periods?

Here are some Ayurvedic treatments for irregular periods to consider:

1. Herbal remedies

Herbs like Ashoka, Yashtimadhu, and Lajjalu help overcome the problem of irregular periods. You can boil 10 grams of this mixture in 200 milliliters of water until it reduces to 1/4th of its original volume and consumes it twice daily. You can start 3-5 days before the expected date of menstruation and continue for 10 days after the period. [9]

2. Diet

You can include Asthisamharaka stem and leaf juice in your diet. Mix it with honey and consume it twice daily for three months. [9]

3. Yoga and Meditation

Combining Asana, Pranayama, and other relaxation or meditation techniques related to yoga help overcome menstrual disorders and irregular periods. [10]

4. Abhyanga

Abhyanga, a form of Ayurvedic massage, aids in pacifying Vata, which is a primary causative factor of menstrual abnormalities. [11]

5. Panchakarma

Panchakarma is an Ayurvedic detoxification process that can help remove toxins from the body and restore balance to the doshas. Panchkarma’s Virechan therapy can be particularly helpful in reducing heavy bleeding and ensuring regular menses. [12]

Home remedies for irregular periods

While consulting a healthcare professional for appropriate treatment is essential, here are some home remedies you may consider to manage irregular periods.

1. Herbal teas

Some herbal teas, like ginger or chamomile tea, can have soothing effects that may help alleviate stress, which can contribute to irregular periods.

2. Moderate physical activity

Engaging in regular, moderate-intensity exercises, like walking and swimming, can regulate hormones and improve health.

3. Yoga and meditation

Yoga and meditation can effectively help manage stress levels. It can promote hormonal balance that may contribute to regular menstrual cycles.

4. Weight management

Maintaining a healthy weight is necessary for hormonal balance. Both underweight and overweight conditions can contribute to irregular periods.

5. Warm compress

A warm compress can reduce menstrual cramps and discomfort associated with irregular periods.

When to seek medical help for irregular periods

Here are specific scenarios that warrant medical attention.

1. Persistent irregularity

If your menstrual cycles consistently exhibit irregular patterns, with unpredictable cycle lengths or frequent missed periods, it’s advisable to seek medical help. Consistent irregularities may signal hormonal imbalances or underlying health conditions. [16]

2. Prolonged menstrual duration

Menstrual periods lasting longer than seven days should prompt a visit to a healthcare provider. Excessive bleeding may lead to complications like anemia. [16]

3. Irregular periods with other symptoms

If you experience irregular periods and additional symptoms like unexplained weight gain, persistent fatigue, or abnormal hair growth on the face, it’s crucial to seek medical attention. These symptoms may indicate hormonal imbalances or conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS). [16]

4. Difficulty conceiving

If challenges in conceiving accompany irregular periods arise, it may indicate fertility issues. Seeking the advice of a fertility specialist or gynecologist is advisable. [16]


Understanding the finer aspects of menstrual irregularities helps recognize when seeking professional medical advice is essential. Addressing irregular periods requires a multifaceted approach, from the importance of early medical intervention to the variety of treatment options available. Embracing a proactive approach will help you understand the root causes and identify potent treatment strategies.


1. What is the meaning of irregular periods?

Irregular periods refer to menstrual cycles that deviate from the normal duration range or vary significantly in terms of bleeding patterns.

2. Why do irregular periods happen?

Irregular periods can be due to hormonal imbalances, stress, medical conditions, and medications. [15]

3. What yoga and meditation practices are beneficial for irregular periods?

Combining Asana, Pranayama, and other relaxation or meditation techniques related to yoga help overcome menstrual disorders and irregular periods. [10]

4. Are irregular periods a serious problem?

Irregular periods can indicate an underlying medical condition, and it’s important to consult a healthcare provider if they persist or are accompanied by other symptoms.

5. How many irregular periods are normal?

While the definition of “normal” can vary, it’s generally considered normal to have a menstrual cycle that lasts between 21 and 35 days, with bleeding lasting between 2 to 7 days.


The information provided here is only for informational purposes, please consult a trained Ayurvedic practitioner every time before initiating any treatment.


  1. Irregular periods.
  2. IAMJ Research Article International Ayurvedic Medical Journal ISSN:2320 5091. 10 October 2015 
  3. Thyroid disorders in polycystic ovarian syndrome subjects: A tertiary hospital based cross-sectional study from Eastern India. March 2013
  4. Menstrual abnormalities and their association with lifestyle pattern in adolescent girls of Garhwal, India. July 2018
  5. Association of Iron Depletion with Menstruation and Dietary Intake Indices in Pubertal Girls: The Healthy Growth Study. 23 December 2013
  6. What are the treatment options for heavy periods? 4 May 2017
  7. Menstruation and the Menopause Transition. 1 September 2012
  8. Innovations in conservative endometriosis treatment: an updated review. 1 June 2011
  9. Ayurveda Offering Herbal Healing.
  10. The Effect of Yoga on Menstrual Disorders: A Systematic Review. June 2017
  12. A Conceptual Study of Virechan Karma in Menstrual Disorders. March 2017
  13. Heavy Menstrual Bleeding. 17 August 2022 
  14. Menstrual patterns leading to the final menstrual period. January 2002 
  15. Irregular periods.
  16. Irregular periods
  17.  The relationship between heavy menstrual bleeding, iron deficiency, and iron deficiency anemia
  18. Endometrial Hyperplasia 

Dr. Ashwini Konnur

Dr. Ashwini has 17 years of experience in Clinical Practice, Research & Education in the field of Ayurveda with competency in acute & chronic conditions & lifestyle diseases. She has also expertise in treating Female Infertility disorders, other Gynecological Problems & General disorders along with specialised focus in Ayurvedic detoxification therapies, Panchakarma & other Ayurvedic treatments


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