What is amenorrhea and how do you spot it?

One of our ambassadors, Chlo Hodgkinson, is also known to many as ‘The Period Party Girl’ for the amazing work she does in raising awareness of menstrual health issues and recovery from amenorrhea. Chlo says, “This is a topic close to my heart, the ‘No Period, pants’ campaign research revealed that over half of UK women have experienced losing their periods due to a variety of reasons including undereating, over exercising, and not fueling your body nutritionally. Over 85% of women want to understand their bodies better, with more information on their period and menstrual cycles being the number one topic.”

What is amenorrhea?

Amenorrhea is normally a symptom of a wider health issue and there are two types, primary and secondary.

  • Primary amenorrhea – defined as someone who has not had a period by age 15. 
  • Secondary amenorrhea – defined as someone who has missed three or more periods in a row, who has had periods in the past, or the absence of a period for at least 6 months or longer after menstruating normally


What causes amenorrhea?

There are several causes for those experiencing secondary amenorrhea and the loss of periods can be caused by a number of contributing factors, including:

  • High levels of physical and/or emotional stress
  • Excessive exercise
  • Surgery
  • Unresolved trauma 
  • Rapid weight loss 
  • Nutrient deficiencies


What are the top signs to look out for when spotting amenorrhea?

    • Understand your menstrual cycle – Know how long your period usually is and note when you ovulate. 
    • Don’t rely solely on your cycle tracking app – Instead, use the signs your body is giving you. 
    • Be aware of what your period is usually like – In other words, be aware of when it usually arrives and what it feels like before it arrives.
    • Be aware of the signs of ovulation – The process of ovulation is how female bodies produce the hormones (estrogen and progesterone) that help us have healthy periods.
    • Remember that our period and menstrual cycle are part of a female body’s vital signs – A missing period is a sign that something is off in some aspect of our overall health. 



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