I’ve read quite a few articles while researching for this post on how to induce a period. It seems to me that most of those articles are missing the point or purposely avoiding the real reason why the majority of women want to know how to induce a period:
Because they suspect they might be pregnant and don’t want to be.
Now that I’ve addressed that elephant in the room, we can move on.
Of course, there might be other times when you want to know how to make your period come faster, say if you have an upcoming vacation, honeymoon, or a big presentation at work and you’d rather be done bleeding by then. The advice in this post will also work for you.
But I think many women want to know how to bring on a late period because they’re worried they might be pregnant. For whatever reason—no explanation needed—they don’t want to be. And I know from experience that this limbo can be incredibly stressful.
Let’s talk about abortion
Unfortunately, Wade vs. Roe was recently overturned, which now means that in one of the most “progressive” countries in the world, millions of women will be denied the right to have an abortion. And there are plenty of other countries where it is still completely illegal, even if a woman has been raped or her life is at risk.
However, in ancient times, “abortion” was known as menstrual regulation, and every woman regulated her own menses. It was nobody else’s business. The midwives, witches, and medicine women utilized their vast knowledge of plants to help women conceive, have regular periods, bring on a late period if she feared she might be pregnant and didn’t want to be, and terminate a pregnancy later down the line if needed.
Eventually, as patriarchy took over, abortion was taken from us, criminalized, and put in the hands of men. Naturally, a lot of men are deeply uncomfortable with the power that women have to create and give birth to life and the idea that we are sexual beings who engage in pleasure for pleasure’s sake rather than to procreate. So they’ve decided to control our bodies the only way they can.
In my opinion, the abortion debate should not even be a debate. It should not be debatable whether a woman should maintain full control and sovereignty over her body and choices. There is no point during pregnancy that women should stop being human beings, and become the property of the state. And our laws should reflect this.
Unfortunately, they don’t. This is why we as women need to start sharing the ancient wisdom in this post (that lives on, having been passed down through generations) and regain control of our bodies and our menstrual cycle.
That’s what this post is all about.
Why is my period late?
There are many possible reasons for having a late period:
- A significantly low or high body weight
- Engaging in extreme exercise
- A change in diet
- PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome)
- Birth control
- Thyroid issues
- Hormonal issues
- Tumors that affect your ovaries or pituitary gland
- Chronic ovulation
However, if you typically have regular periods and you’re fairly healthy, your period is likely late for one of three reasons:
- You’re stressed (and maybe you don’t even know it)
- Your diet has drastically changed
- You might be pregnant
And if you think you might be pregnant and don’t want to be, this will send your stress levels through the roof, which can cause your period to be delayed even further.
How to induce a period naturally (when you suspect you might be pregnant)
Let’s say you’re tracking your menstrual cycle, and it’s typically 29-30 days in length. But this month, days 33, 34, and maybe even 35 arrive, and there’s still no sign of blood.
Panic sets in.
Am I pregnant?
Fuck, I can’t be pregnant.
For the love of Goddess, let me bleed!
Don’t immediately jump to conclusions. If you’ve been having safe sex or you’re on some kind of birth control, the chances are you’re not pregnant.
But if you want to put your mind at ease and induce your period, there are a few everyday herbs known as emmenagogues that are said to help bring on a late period or make your period come faster this month if desired.
As I always say, with herbs, just make sure you’re buying them from a reputable source and organic ones where possible, so you avoid nasty chemicals.
Remember that if you’re trying to conceive, happily pregnant, or breastfeeding, these herbs can cause you to miscarry, so avoid them in these cases. Otherwise, they’re completely safe (in normal, healthy doses). Do make sure you are not consuming them in unhealthy doses, as this could be harmful.
The first natural way to induce your period is by consuming ginger, which is said to increase the heat around your uterus and cause contractions, making the lining shed. It has been used since ancient times as a healing remedy to induce periods and ease period cramps.
The best way to consume ginger is in tea form. Slice up some fresh ginger and steep it in boiled water (covered) for 5-10 minutes. Strain and sweeten with honey or maple syrup to taste.
Parsley contains a lot of vitamin C and apiol, which help stimulate uterine contractions and can bring on a late period. However, if you have kidney problems, avoid parsley tea.
Here’s how to induce your period with parsley: steep a couple of tablespoons of fresh parsley in a cup of boiling water for around five minutes. Strain and drink.
Turmeric is a golden yellow spice known for having many health benefits, which is why turmeric lattes have become so popular recently. It can help reduce menstrual cramps and balance your hormones which can help your period come faster or come when you think it’s not coming.
Many Indian curries use turmeric, but the most convenient (and I think the most delicious) way to consume it is in golden latte form. I love this recipe, and it also has ginger in it, so you’re getting two emmenagogues in one!
There are lots of foods that are rich in vitamin C that you can consume to induce your period, including:
- Citrus fruits
Papaya is another fruit that can help bring on contractions in the uterus and induce a period. It’s thought that the carotene in papaya helps stimulate estrogen, and this is what makes your period start.
It’s easy to consume papaya because it’s a lush tropical fruit. However, it’s not readily available in all grocery stores, so you might need to pop into an Asian grocery store to find it depending on where you live.
Eat it raw or juice it with whatever else you like.
Dong quai is a herb native to China (sometimes known as female ginseng or angelica sinensis). It has been used as a herbal remedy for thousands of years. It is thought to relieve menstrual and menopausal symptoms and help induce a period by improving blood flow to the pelvis and stimulating the uterine muscles.
Dong quai is often made into herbal teas and combined with other herbs, so check your local health store or a trusted online health store for some quai tea.
Finally, on this list of how to induce a period naturally with herbs, it’s black cohosh (also known as black snakeroot and baneberry), a flowering plant native to North America.
If you’re on medication or have a history of heart or liver problems, it’s best to stay away from black cohosh. But for everyone else, this herbal supplement can encourage the uterine lining to shed, help regulate the menstrual cycle, and offer more regular periods.
Other ways to induce your period naturally
That’s the herbs done, but there are other ways to make your period start early or when it’s late.
The methods in this list are best for when you want to bleed earlier than you’re due (because of an upcoming vacation etc.) or if you know there’s no possibility of you being pregnant and your period is late for some other reason.
This is always easier said than done, but stress is a big cause of late periods. It was internalized stress that made my period a week late a few years ago, and it wasn’t until I’d addressed the root cause of the matter and gone out of my way to relax did my body feel safe and ready to bleed.
Stress can also cause irregular periods because an increase in stress hormones can affect the hormones your body needs to maintain a healthy, regular cycle.
So, if you think you might be suffering from stress, here are some ways to relax:
- Address the root cause of the stress and try to find a solution to it (again, this is easier said than done, I know!)
- Get a good night’s sleep (7-9 hours)
- Cut down your workload
- Practice yoga
- Do something fun for you each day
Take a warm bath
I only started enjoying bath rituals a few years ago; they have been such a revelation!
Sometimes I take a bath as part of a moon ritual. Other times, I do it when I need to unwind at the end of a tough day, and sometimes I’ll take one after I stop bleeding to symbolize the end of the winter phase and the beginning of spring.
Baths are wonderful any time. And they can help to induce a period naturally by relaxing any tight muscles in your body, relieving stress, and increasing blood flow to the pelvic area.
An alternative to a bath is to fill a hot water bottle and place it on your belly.
Stimulate your cervix
I have to be honest here—I don’t know how to do this, and I can’t find much information online. I first heard about this method of bringing on a late period from Mary Lou Singleton—midwife, nurse practitioner, and advocate for women—while she was being interviewed by Meghan Murphy on her podcast, Feminist Current. If you want to know more about this technique, I’d recommend reaching out to a midwife you trust.
Have an orgasm
When you have an orgasm, it can make your cervix contract and dilate and get your menstrual blood flowing. But the better news is you don’t need to have penetrative sex; you can do it solo! So have sex (good sex) or a self-pleasure session—whatever you prefer.
Moderate exercise can also help loosen those uterine muscles and make your period come faster. Avoid anything too heavy or strenuous because this can disrupt your cycle. Walking, yoga or swimming are perfect.
And that’s how to induce a period naturally!
A note on birth control
I couldn’t write this post without touching on birth control. When researching to write this, I found that practically every other big media publication and blog recommended going on birth control to regulate periods.
Yes, this is a way to regulate your periods if they’re irregular or heavy or you have other concerns like PCOS or acne. However, you are ingesting a drug, which means there are other side effects to be aware of.
I love that I can access birth control if I want, and I believe every woman should have that option. But the overturning of Roe vs. Wade has also been a huge win for pharmaceutical companies because they’re pushing birth control on women even more and profiting in the process.
When you’re on medicated birth control, you don’t have real periods anymore; you have fake periods. And you become disconnected from your sacred cycle and the true power it holds for you as a woman.
Plus, the pill is not 100% effective. It has the same effectiveness rate with typical use as Natural Cycles does—a natural birth control method involving measuring your temperature each day and recording it in an app. I’ve been using Natural Cycles for six years, and I love it (use the code REVOLOON15 for 15% off an annual subscription).
Make it your mission to know all the facts, then make the choice that feels right to you.
Take back control of your body and your sacred cycle
I’ve got to say this when writing about anything to do with health and the body, but it’s not meant to scare you: don’t use anything you’ve read here as a substitute for medical advice or diagnosis. Always seek the advice of a trusted health practitioner if you have any questions or concerns.
Now that’s out of the way; if you have any questions for me, pop them in the comments box below.
Have you ever had a later period, and do you know what caused it? And have you ever successfully managed to bring on a late period using one of the above methods or something else?