Health And Wellness

6 Effective Ways To Make Your Period Come Faster

Photo: Dean Drobot / Shutterstock
woman with calendar showing when her period will come

When it comes to your period, sometimes you just want to get it over with and move on with your life.

While bringing on a period may seem insane to some, there are a lot of valid reasons to bring on a period. Maybe you have a big vacation coming up and don't want to worry about tampons all day when you're out on the town, or maybe you don't want to be moody and irritable when on a first date.

Whatever your reason, it's possible to speed up Mother Nature's arrival, but learning how to make your period come sooner is not a foolproof process.

There are all kinds of benefits to being able to control when you get your period. For example, some methods allow you to control your cycle and decide when you have time for the discomfort of menstruating. Plus, getting to know your body in this way brings peace of mind and is relaxing.

If you know when you need to have a period, you’re more likely to know when something is off (i.e., if you’re pregnant or have another health-related issue).

RELATED: Why You Get Leg Pain During Your Period? How To Get Rid Of Cramps For Good

What triggers the start of a period is the corpus luteum breaking down once it realizes there's no sperm to fertilize the egg during ovulation. This results in your estrogen and progesterone levels dropping, which causes your menstrual cycle to start. The sooner it happens, the sooner you'll get your period.

The reason why exercise and other forms of relaxation can trigger your period is because your hormone levels can change, and that can interfere with your menstrual cycle build-up and shedding of your uterine lining.

There's no way to get your period immediately, but there are things that you can do physically to make it come sooner around the time of your usual period.

Important note: No matter which method you choose to induce your period, it's essential that you see your OB/GYN, talk to your doctor, or seek medical advice if you're experiencing nausea or vomiting, severe pain, unusually heavy bleeding that lasts for days, or fever.

Reasons you may want to induce your period

1. Irregular periods

Some women struggle with irregular periods and are seeking a way to get back on a regular cycle. Unfortunately, it's very difficult to not have a period; after all, it's a part of being a woman.

Some women using the pill will eventually start spotting if they don’t allow themselves to have a little “period” (or, more accurately, if you’re on the pill, withdrawal bleeding) every few packs.

A late or irregular period could also be caused by non-disease issues like stress, extreme exercise, age, birth control, or perimenopause. But it may also be due to a medical condition known as amenorrhea. Amenorrhea can be caused by medication, pregnancy, and after stopping birth control.

Other causes of irregular or delayed periods include PCOS, hyperprolactinemia, pituitary gland problems, or Asherman syndrome.

2. Convenience

Most women will get their period at a pretty inconvenient time, whether that's right before they go on vacation or have big plans, are intending on swimming and don't want to worry about tampons, or during a time where they simply don't want to worry about bleeding through their pants — like a wedding day, for instance.

That may lead women to try methods to induce their period beforehand so it doesn't interfere.

3. Other medical conditions

There are additional reasons why a period might be late, or why women would want to induce their period.

This includes having low body weight or obesity, thyroid issues, reproductive health diseases like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or pelvic inflammatory disease (PID), or chronic diseases like diabetes and Celiac disease.

RELATED: What It Might Mean If You Have Your Period For Two Weeks

Possible risks of trying to induce your period to watch out for

1. Accidentally terminating a pregnancy

Before attempting to induce your period, be sure to take a pregnancy test if you believe you may be pregnant.

The use of emmenagogues, or herbs that induce a period — including mugwort, rue, safflower, yarrow, tansy, angelica, wormwood, and others — are also known as abortifacients, meaning they will cause a miscarriage.

2. Allergies

When using herbs to bring on a period, there are additional risk factors to keep in mind. Because herbal supplements aren't regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), you may not know exactly what you are ingesting, especially if you purchased it from an unknown supplier.

The use of herbs can, unfortunately, lead to allergies or, in other cases, serious medical conditions. Be sure to pay close attention to the quality of the herbs you're buying, and whether or not they have been verified by a third party, like The USP Dietary Supplement Verification Program or ConsumerLab.

3. Health issues

Going on birth control for the sole purpose of beginning a period has its own set of side effects. Some side effects of birth control include depression, nausea, cramping, acne breakouts, UTIs, vaginal burning or itching, and abnormal bleeding.

Birth control also increases the risk of heart attack, stroke, blood clots, and even cancer. It's important to talk to your doctor before starting birth control so they can determine the best one for you.

No one is judging you if you desire to bring your period on faster so you can get it over with.

Maybe you know your body well enough to know that within the next week or so you will have to have a period, regardless of your choice of hormonal contraceptives or birth control method.

But if you're asking how to induce menstruation in a day, there are some methods you can try.

RELATED: Period Flu? What It Really Means If You Have Flu-Like Symptoms Before Your Period

How to induce your period and help you gain control over your menstrual cycle

1. Get a prescription for birth control pills.

Birth control pills are probably the most effective way to take control of your cycle and decide when to have your periods.

If you go to the doctor for a menstrual issue, this is most likely going to be the first thing they mention about controlling your cycle. Plus, this method can make the periods you do have lighter, and the cramps way more tolerable.

However, to control pregnancy (and your cycle) effectively, you have to be very committed to taking the active pills when prescribed. Even just taking it an hour late can result in spotting or pregnancy, depending on the pill.

Taking too many packs in a row can result in unpredictable spotting. Be sure to get to know your body and the pill once you start so you know how it affects you and whether or not this is the right choice for your body.

Everybody is different, and you may have a bit of trial and error before you find the routine that works best for your cycle.

2. Take a warm bath and use a heating pad.

Warming up your body (particularly your abdomen) by taking a warm bath for 20-30 minutes, preferably multiple days in a row, or by using a heating pad to start your period by placing it on your lower belly, can be effective.

There's no scientific evidence for why this works, but it seems to be a pretty universal way to help get things going. It’s speculated that the heat relaxes the muscles in the abdomen and pelvic region, allowing the uterus proper blood flow to start the process of menstruation.

Whatever the reason, heat things up to jumpstart that menstrual cycle.

3. Get up and do light exercise.

Another unexplained way to get your period started is exercise. It's most likely due to blood flow and muscle contractions that come with simple exercises.

Keep in mind that too heavy of exercise can have the opposite effect, but a workout that's slightly higher in intensity than what you’re used to can get the blood circulating, reduce stress, and possibly even get your period started.

Maybe consider yoga that targets blood flow to the pelvic region for an extra boost, or meditation. But if your period isn't coming, even after doing these things, realize that menstrual cycles aren't always going to happen the same day every month.

4. Have sex.

For those of us prone to being a bit on the hard up-side during menstruation, sex is an easy (and, let’s be honest, fun) way of getting your period ready to go.

Sex promotes good blood flow to the genitals, and the contractions of sexual activity can trigger the uterus to start shedding its lining. Plus, sex makes cramps way less painful for lots of women, so it’s basically a win-win.

5. Eat carotene and foods rich in vitamin C.

The dietary recommendations for starting periods are most likely due to the fact that a healthy weight is vital to maintaining a regular menstrual cycle. Being too thin or carrying too much excess weight can be detrimental to your body’s ability to maintain a regular cycle.

However, foods like papaya, oranges, carrots, spinach, and pineapple are rich in either vitamin C or carotene, both of which have been linked to starting menstruation.

Vitamin C is thought to increase estrogen production, which can thicken the lining in the uterus, making menstruation more likely to happen. Carotene is thought to have a similar effect, making papaya one of the best fruits to eat to induce menstruation.

What do you eat if your periods are not coming? There are actually certain food and vitamins that will help you bring on your period faster. These include foods or drinks with vitamin C, including pineapple, ginger, parsley, and Turmeric.

6. Drink herbal tea.

It has been speculated that certain teas (and drinking them up to twice a day) can stimulate the start of menstruation — particularly, parsley tea. Apparently, parsley has been used to induce menstruation “for centuries.”

While parsley tea is the most likely to be helpful, any tea that relaxes you and warms your belly is going to be useful in starting menstruation, specifically, dong quai black cohosh tea.

RELATED: 40 Funny Period Quotes About Menstruation That'll Make You Laugh

Nicole Bradley-Bernard is a writer whose work has been published in FINE Magazine, New York Gal Magazine, and more. Currently, she works as a freelance writer for Mighty Scribes.