Periods are a vital part of a woman’s life for several years. Unfortunately, they are accompanied by cramps, bloating, mood changes, and breast tenderness. So, you may be surprised to discover that there are many ways to induce periods. Women may wish to induce their menstrual cycle sooner so that they can enjoy their holiday and deal with a deadline without worrying about menstruation’s uncomfortable symptoms. Women who suffer from PCOS and other hormonal issues, have irregular periods, and may also want some remedies to induce menstruation naturally. Read on to know the various methods to induce periods and what to avoid.
1. Hormonal Birth control
Hormonal birth control methods like birth control pills and the ring are the only reliable method of inducing periods. You must consult with your gynecologist before using this method.
Usually, you take your hormonal pills for 21 days and then stop them for seven days or take a placebo pill for seven days. You get your period during these seven days. To get your period early, you must stop taking the hormonal pill earlier.
However, you must be aware that changing the days of your pill can make them less effective in preventing pregnancy.
2. Vitamin C
Vitamin C is also known to induce periods. Vitamin C increases the production of estrogen and lowers the levels of progesterone. Estrogen thickens the uterus’s lining, which causes the uterus to contract and helps to induce periods.
You can increase your intake of vitamin C by taking supplements. Stay within the recommended limits of vitamin C intake, as too much vitamin C can lead to digestive issues, iron overload, and even kidney stones (1). You can also add some vitamin C rich fruits and vegetables in your diet like orange, broccoli, papaya, grapefruit, and bell peppers.
Pineapple is another common remedy for inducing periods. This tasty and refreshing fruit is rich in bromelain, an enzyme that can affect estrogen and other hormones.
According to a 2017 study, bromelain helps to reduce inflammation (2). So, bromelain can help regulate periods in women who have irregular menstruation due to inflammation. It is also important to note that bromelain can increase red and white blood cells, increasing blood flow, and making periods heavier.
While there is enough anecdotal evidence, there is no scientific evidence to prove that pineapples can induce periods.
Parsley is an herb that is known for its emmenagogue properties. It stimulates the uterus and can cause uterine contractions due to its vitamin C and apiol content. You can have parsley in the form of tea. To make parsley tea, pour boiling water over a few spoons of fresh parsley and let it steep for a few minutes.
Too much of apiol is considered toxic and can lead to abortions. You should not drink parsley tea if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or have kidney problems.
Turmeric is a popular home remedy for inducing periods. It is an emmenagogue that stimulates blood flow to the uterus and the pelvic region. It works by affecting the estrogen and progesterone levels, but there isn’t enough scientific proof. Research also suggests that curcumin in turmeric can reduce inflammation (3). This can help to induce periods and make them regular.
You can add turmeric to milk or water and consume. You can also add it to curries and other dishes.
Ginger is used in traditional Chinese medicine to stimulate menstruation. It helps to cause uterine contractions, which can induce periods. This theory is, however, not scientifically proved. You can take ginger tea sweetened with honey to help.
7. Black cohosh
Native Americans have used black cohosh for the treatment of menstrual irregularities for centuries. This perennial herb from the buttercup family can help to regulate periods and ease PMS symptoms. It is said to tone your uterus and promote the shedding of the uterine lining.
High doses of black cohosh can lead to headaches and digestive upset. This herb is not considered safe for pregnant women, women with breast or uterine cancer, or those with endometriosis.
8. Dong Quai
Dong Quai is derived from the roots of the Chinese perennial Angelica Sinensis and the native Japanese A. acutiloba. It is known to promote uterine health and regulate the menstrual cycle. According to researchers, Dong Quai contains active ingredients called coumarins, which stimulate the central nervous system and increase blood flow throughout the body. This herb also stimulates the muscles of the uterus and thus trigger uterine contractions.
Cinnamon has antispasmodic properties and is often used to reduce pain and cramps during menstruation. Cinnamon is also known to increase blood flow to the uterine area, which helps to regulate irregular menstruation.
You can drink a cup of cinnamon tea to enjoy its benefits. Add some cinnamon to water and boil it for 15 minutes. Add some honey for sweetness.
Doing gentle exercise can help to loosen your muscles and induce periods faster. Exercise also helps to lower stress, which can regulate periods. You should avoid excessive exercise as it also can lower your estrogen levels too much and lead to amenorrhea. Exercising in moderation, on the other hand, can restore your hormones and regulate your periods.
High levels of stress can lead to menstrual irregularities (4). Stress inhibits estrogen and progesterone production, which play a vital role in maintaining a regular cycle. Find a way to destress and relax. Yoga, meditation, mindfulness techniques are some easy ways to promote relaxation.
12. Sexual intercourse
The stimulation of the vagina during sex causes pelvic blood to flow in that direction. When you have an orgasm, your cervix dilates, and this can help shed the lining of the uterus. The hormones produced during sex like oxytocin, adrenaline, and dopamine, can also help your period come faster.
13. Warm bath
A warm water bath can also help to induce your period. The warmth of the water helps to relax your muscles and relieves stress. Warm water also increases the blood flow to the pelvic area, which can induce menstruation.
Reasons why your period is delayed
An average menstrual cycle usually lasts for 28 days, though it can range from 21 to 35 days. There are be several reasons why your periods are not regular. These include –
- Excessive weight loss
- Too much exercise
- Sudden weight gain
- Polycystic ovary syndrome
- Birth control
- Thyroid dysfunction
- Early menopause
- Celiac disease
- Pelvic inflammatory disease
Risks of trying to induce a period
Menstruating regularly is essential for the reproductive health of women. While some several foods and herbs can help to induce periods, they can also be harmful in some instances. You must always ensure that you are not pregnant before taking any of these herbs. Taking emmenagogues (period inducing foods) during pregnancy can cause a miscarriage.
You must also ensure that you buy your herbs from a reputable source. The FDA does not monitor herbs, so you must be sure of the source to ensure quality and purity.
From trying to regulate your periods, and making sure they are over before you head out for a vacation, there may be several reasons why you want to induce your periods. From hormonal birth control pills to natural herbs and lifestyle changes, there are many ways to can achieve this. Ensure you are not pregnant before you try any of these period inducing methods.