White vaginal discharge is very normal as it is a medium of flushing out dead skin cells from the vagina. It can vary its texture throughout the menstrual cycle depending on the hormones released. It usually increases when you are ovulating, sexually aroused or breastfeeding.
In some cases like white discharge (instead of period) can be an indication of pregnancy or any internal issues. In this article, let me explain the reasons for white discharge, late period in detail.
White Discharge and Missed Period
If you had an unprotected sex in your fertile period then missed period and white discharge can be an indication of pregnancy. Here’s why…
Usually white discharge occurs when estrogen levels are increases. This usually happens during ovulation (fertile period of your menstrual cycle). After ovulation, estrogen decreases and progesterone increases which prepares the uterus for pregnancy.
If pregnancy doesn’t occur, progesterone decreases and menstruation starts. If pregnancy occurs, both estrogen and progesterone hormones increase rapidly in order to support fetus development. The rapid rise in estrogen leads to milky white discharge which is considered to be an early pregnancy symptom.
As you have missed your period, you can now take a pregnancy test to know the result. If you get a positive result then consult a gynecologist to know the further course of action.
Causes Of White Discharge, Missed Period and Negative Pregnancy Test
If pregnancy test is negative then we recommend waiting for another few days and take a test again. Sometime, the hCG levels in the urine can increase very slowly. If you have got a negative pregnancy test even after 10 days of missed period then pregnancy is unlikely.
White discharge instead of period and a negative pregnancy test can be caused due to some other reasons. We have mentioned them below with detailed description…
Polycystic ovarian syndrome is a problem caused by an imbalance in hormones – estrogen and progesterone. This results in growth of benign cysts in the ovaries. Women with this issue have irregular periods, acne, weight gain, and improper facial hair. This problem can affect fertility and insulin resistance and cardiovascular functioning.
The hormonal imbalance caused by PCOD can delay the period and lead to white vaginal discharge. So, if you have got negative pregnancy test even after 10 days of missed period then it can be due to PCOD. Consult a gynecologist for evaluation and proper treatment.
Menstrual cycles can get affected by some psychological factors like anxiety. Women who are trying to get pregnant often stay anxious about it which can lead to a delay in period. Doctors always recommend couples to stay calm and relaxed while trying to get pregnant. Worrying too much can not only affect reproductive system but also the digestive system which can lead to cramps and diarrhea.
Many studies have proven that stress can have a direct impact on the menstrual cycle. Because increased stress levels can lead to an imbalance in hormone products and its functioning. This can disrupt the normal mechanism of the menstrual cycle leading to irregular or missed period with white discharge.
4. Birth control
If you have been taking oral contraceptives for birth control then this can be one of the reason for missed period with white discharge. Because some oral contraceptives prevent ovulation occurrence which can create havoc in the hormonal balance. Taking birth control pills for a longer period of time can reduce menstrual cycles to 4 per year.
If you have taken emergency contraception immediately after having an intercourse (especially in the morning) then it can lead to delayed ovulation and menstruation. There’s nothing to worry about it, your menstruation will start in few days.
Women who suddenly stop taking oral contraceptives experience irregular or delayed period for a certain period of time. Because their body will be trying to adjust to the new phase. So, it is better to consult a gynecologist to help your body adjust quickly to the new phase.
5. Excessive Exercise
Have you started hitting gym to reduce weight or get fit? Then engaging in excessive exercise suddenly can lead to delayed or missed period. Because your body cannot accept the sudden change to your physical routine and disrupts hormonal imbalance. So, it is always recommended to exercise in moderate.
6. Faulty Pregnancy Test
If the pregnancy kit you have used for the test has manufacturing defect then it can give you a fake or fault result. So, we recommend buying a pregnancy kit from a trustworthy company and medical store to avoid such situations.
The process of menopause starts few years before itself, which is called as perimenopause. Usually, it starts at the age of late 40’s. During this phase, hormone changes may go on a ramp, ovarian follicles will deplete, and you may experience hot flashes, irregular periods, libido and dry vagina. In some women, it can start in early 40’s and lead to premature ovarian failure. This may cause missed period with milky white discharge.
8. Hypothalamus Dysfunction
Hypothalamus is an important endocrine gland that controls ovarian function. By releasing GnRH, hypothalamus will signal both the pituitary and ovaries to commence the menstrual period. However, if the hormones are not properly released by hypothalamus then it can result in a missed period and white discharge. Few factors that disturb functioning of hypothalamus are improper eating timings, sleepless nights, physical stress, long travels and unhealthy lifestyle.
9. Ectopic Pregnancy
Ectopic pregnancy is also called as tubal pregnancy which happens when fertilized ovum implants itself in the fallopian tubes instead of uterus. This can lead to missed period with white discharge. Other ways to detect an ectopic pregnancy are:
- Low blood pressure.
- Fatigue, weakness and dizziness.
- Previously has ectopic pregnancy.
- Heavy abdominal pains.
- Loss of consciousness or fainting.
Ectopic pregnancy can be dangerous if not treated on time. So, we recommend consulting a doctor immediately if you are experiencing abdominal pains and a missed period.
Some Frequently Asked Questions
1. I am having cramps, late period and got a negative pregnancy test.
If you are having light cramps then probably your menstruation will start in few days. If your menstruation has not started even after few days then take a pregnancy test again. If you still got a negative pregnancy test then consult a gynecologist to know the problem.
If you are having acute abdominal pain then it can be due to ectopic pregnancy. So, we recommend consulting a doctor to diagnosed and start the further course of treatment.
2. Late period, negative pregnancy test, when should I test again?
Wait for 3 – 4 days and take a test again. Sometimes, hCG hormone increases very slowly which can give a fault result. However, if you get a negative pregnancy test even after 10 days of missed period then pregnancy is unlikely.
3. My period is about 2 weeks late but still negative pregnancy test. What should I do?
As it’s already been more than 10 days after a missed period, pregnancy is unlikely if you got a negative pregnancy test. So, we recommend consulting a doctor to know the right reason for the missed period.
4. I didn’t had an intercourse but my period is late and experiencing white discharge. What can be reason?
As you didn’t have an intercourse then pregnancy is unlikely. So, missed period with white discharge can be caused due to stress, unhealthy lifestyle, PCOD or excessive exercise. Wait for few days to see if the menstruation starts. If not then consult a gynecologist for diagnosis.
5. My period is 6 days late with a creamy white discharge.
Take a pregnancy test as most women experience creamy white discharge in the early stages of pregnancy. If the result is positive then consult a doctor for further course of action.
6. Missed period, negative pregnancy test and white discharge. Can I still be pregnant?
Yes, you can. Sometimes, fetus releases hCG levels slowly which can take a long time to show in the urine. So, take a test again after few days. If you are anxious, then take a blood pregnancy test for accurate results.
Menstrual cycle is a very delicate functionality. Regular lifestyle changes can have a direct impact on them. Missing period can cause fear in most of the women but we recommend analyze the symptoms carefully to understand the situation. It is always better to consult a doctor if you experience any changes in your menstrual cycle. Early detection of problems can be helpful in treating successfully.
If you still have any questions about vaginal discharge or menstrual cycle, write to us in the comment section below. Our experts will get back to you as soon as possible.