Yoppie, which specialises in personalised menstrual wellness, has found that 70% of women have, at some point, experienced a bloodless period
In other words, they have experienced all of the expected period symptoms – cramps, acne, bloating, etc – but without the presence of blood.
Bloodless periods can be concerning and often confusing, especially when the symptoms occur outside of a woman’s expected window.
In fact, of the 70% of women who report having a bloodless period, 59% say it occurred at a different time to their expected menstruation window, while the other 41% say it occurred at the time they would normally expect their period to start.
The time at which a bloodless period occurs can reveal a lot about the underlying cause, of which there are many different possibilities.
That’s why Yoppie has created a comprehensive guide to provide much-needed answers for those currently in the dark about their absent bleed.
If someone is experiencing all of their common period symptoms – bloating, acne, low energy, etc – but isn’t actually bleeding, pregnancy is often the first thought that springs to mind.
And while this might be the case, there are a number of other possible explanations, the first of which is Anovulation.
Anovulation is when the body skips ovulation and therefore doesn’t release an egg, but still produces period symptoms.
It’s rare, and mostly affects people during their first year or so of having a period, and those who are perimenopausal.
A more likely explanation is stress. It’s proven that stress can lighten or stop periods.
But while the bleeding might stop, other symptoms do not. This is because cortisol, otherwise known as the stress hormone, interferes with the part of the brain that controls periods.
Anyone who believes they’re experiencing a bloodless period should consider whether they have been feeling stressed lately.
If so, finding ways to destress should help everything return back to normal.
Ovulation pain (Mittelschmerz)
Ovulation pain, referred to as Mittelschmerz, is when one-sided, cramp-like pain occurs in the lower abdomen while ovulating.
Many women associate such pain with the start of their period and therefore assume they’re having a bloodless period, but Mittelschmerz tends to occur roughly two weeks after a period.
Anyone who thinks they’re experiencing Mittelschmerz needn’t worry, it’s not a health risk, but any discomfort can be eased with a gentle massage or hot water bottle.
A thyroid condition
Hypothyroidism can cause infrequent or missed periods due to an increase in the thyroid releasing hormone (TRH).
High TRH levels tell the pituitary gland when to release prolactin, which interferes with oestrogen production.
Urinary tract infections UTIs) such as cystitis are common and can mimic some period symptoms, such as lower belly cramping, without the accompanying bleed.
Anyone experiencing cramps when they’re period isn’t due should speak to their GP in case there’s an infection that requires treatment.
You can learn more about bloodless periods, including more possible causes, here
“When unexpected things happen during a period, it can be a real worry,” says Yoppie founder Daniella Peri.
“Most of us would prefer our menstrual cycle to be predictable, so when it’s not, it can raise cause for concern.
“In all likelihood, a bloodless period is not something to worry about, and is something easily addressed either through lifestyle changes or simple intervention from your GP, but it’s really important for women to be clued up on the possible causes to either put their mind at rest or know when to seek help.
“Our immediate thought is often we might be pregnant, but sometimes it’s just your body telling you to relax a little.”
Based on a survey of 1,542 UK women aged 19-51 was carried out by Yoppie via consumer research platform Find Out Now (6 January 2021).