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Q. I am having irregular periods after taking contraceptive pills. Why?

Answered by
Dr. Poonguzhali Liston
and medically reviewed by Dr. Divya Banu M
This is a premium question & answer published on Jul 31, 2020

Hello doctor,

Since last month I have had sex 4 times, I took the morning after pill each time I had sex and majority of the time a condom was used. I do not think pregnancy is an option here as I have taken precaution. I think the contraceptive that I have taken 4x has ruined my periods pattern. The first time I took the contraceptive I did get spotting for a week, however I am really worried as I have not received my periods yet and they were due 2 weeks ago. (Bare in mind I had taken the contraceptive 3x two weeks ago).

My question mainly is that because I have taken the contraceptive 4x in the last 6 weeks, is this normal to not experience my periods? And do you know roughly when I will? If I was pregnant is there any symptoms I would experience? The only thing I keep experiencing for the last week or so is cramps and I have had diarrhea strangely. Do you know why this is?

Dr. Poonguzhali Liston

Obstetrics And Gynaecology


Welcome to

1. The frequent intake of emergency contraception causes the hormonal levels to increase suddenly which leads to spotting and irregular bleeding in between periods.

2. Due to this increase the body stops producing the hormones temprorary till the level comes back to normal, hence this causes the periods to be delayed.

3. The diarrhea is due to the increase in progestrone levels due to the emergency pills which cause more frequent stools. Progesterone cause all the involuntary muscles present in the digestive system to contract and hence diarrhea.

4. The cramping also is explained by increased progestrone.

5. It is very difficult to predict when the periods will return, can happen immediately. But if delayed for more than 2 weeks, get a pregnancy test (only precautionary) and then medication can be given to start periods.

6. The symptoms of pregnancy would be nausea, vomitting, tiredness, easy fatigability, breast tenderness, increase in size of breast.

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