Cramps But No Period: What Are the Main Causes and When to See a Doctor?



What Causes Cramps but No Period?

There are several causes for cramps but no period making an appearance. Some of them include:


If you are experiencing period symptoms but no period, taking a home pregnancy test might be worth your time, especially if you have had unprotected sex in the last four weeks, are not sure if you took your pill, tend to rely on the pullout method, or if you have a missed period.

Several of the early pregnancy symptoms are very similar to the symptoms women typically experience before and during their period (such as cramps, mood swings, lower stomach pain, pain in the pelvic area, fatigue, and breast tenderness).

Hormonal birth control

One of the most common side effects of hormonal IUDs is periods that do not appear. This device prevents pregnancy by thinning out the endometrial lining in the uterus, leaving nothing to shed and bleed out. Classic birth control pills usually do not make the flow disappear altogether, but they can result in extremely light flows or even spotting.

This means that you might feel period symptoms, like cramps, weight gain, and breast tenderness, even without experiencing a full-blown period. With hormonal type of IUD, fewer than eight out of 1,000 women (0.8 percent) become pregnant over five years using the device. Still, in rare cases, pregnancy can occur. So, if you are not certain, try a pregnancy test.

Painful bladder syndrome

Painful bladder syndrome, often also called interstitial cystitis, is a condition that mainly affects women, and it causes long-term pelvic pain and problems peeing. If you are experiencing sharp cramps but no period, abdominal pain, and you notice a change in your usual peeing pattern, make sure to visit your doctor who will provide medical advice.


The anovulatory cycle happens when your body does not release an egg but still goes through all of the hormonal changes that come with the menstruating syndrome.

If your body does not release an egg during a cycle, there will be no period, but there will definitely be some lower stomach cramps, uterus cramps, and lower stomach pain.

Anovulation is more common than you might think, and around fifteen percent of all regular cycles are anovulatory. Anovulation sometimes happens randomly, without a trigger, but it can also be triggered by stress, body weight changes, poor nutrition, or getting close to menopause. Skipping one period is nothing to worry about, but if you skip more than three cycles in a row, make sure to visit your doctor.

Thyroid conditions

A small butterfly-shaped gland, called the thyroid, is in charge of regulating several functions of the body, including your metabolism and menstrual cycle. If your thyroid gets disturbed, your cycles can become irregular, and you might experience cramps and period pains but no period.

Spotting or cramps can happen because the lining of your uterus gets built up without shedding since you are not ovulating and releasing the egg. On top of that, mood swings that tend to be connected to PMS may be related to your neurologic function regulated by your thyroid gland.

Some of the most common thyroid conditions include hyperthyroidism, Grave’s disease, hyperthyroidism, and hypothyroidism.


Believe it or not, stress is one of the most common causes of your period not appearing. Stress increases the cortisol levels, which affects your hormone balance, including the hormones that regulate your ovaries and uterine lining. However, cramps in the lower belly can still occur even if you do not get your period thanks to stress.

Pelvic inflammatory disease (PID)

Pelvic inflammatory disease is an infection of the uterus, fallopian tubes, or ovaries, and cramps are one of its most common symptoms. PID typically occurs when sexually transmitted bacteria spread to the reproductive organs from the vagina. Sexually transmitted infections, most commonly chlamydia and gonorrhea, are usually the culprits of this serious pelvic infection, leading to pelvic pain and unexplained cramps. In the long run, if not treated, these infections can lead to infertility.

Ovarian cysts

Ovarian cysts are fluid filled sacs or pockets inside your ovaries. The ovaries make several ovarian cysts monthly in preparation for releasing the egg. Only one ovarian cyst will release an egg, and others usually disappear by the time the period comes. However, sometimes these cysts stick around, and one of the most typical symptoms is mild cramping even when you are not on your period. A ruptured cyst can also make you feel pain and trigger period-like cramps.

Inflammatory bowel disease

The most common symptom of inflammatory bowel diseases is painful bowel movements that can be a source of cramping and pelvic pain without a period appearing. Some of the most common ones include irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), Crohn’s disease, and ulcerative colitis.

Other common causes for cramps with no period

Other possible causes of cramps with no period include pelvic floor pain, ovarian cancer, implantation pain, chronic inflammation, Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, ectopic pregnancy, uterine polyps, and many others.

When should you see a doctor about your pelvic pain and cramps?

If you are experiencing more serious symptoms of thyroid condition, such as sudden unexplained weight loss or gain, shaking, heart palpitations, or significant fatigue, make sure to visit the doctor. If you are under a lot of stress and notice that it is messing with your period and causing serious cramps, talk to your doctor about how to get the stress under control and your periods back on track.

Make sure to visit your health care provider if you miss more than three periods in a row, no matter what you suspect the underlying cause is.

How to relieve cramping outside of the menstrual cycle?

Cramps are uncomfortable and painful, but most of all, it is annoying because it stops you from doing all of your daily activities with ease. If the cramps are mild, you can use a heating pad to relieve the discomfort. Drinking a warm herbal tea and taking a nap for a few hours in front of the TV will not hurt anyone either. However, if cramps become too much for you to handle, take some mild painkillers.

Can you feel like your period is coming and be in the stages of early pregnancy?

Yes, you can feel all of the common symptoms of your menstrual cycle (without the bleeding) and still be in the stages of early pregnancy.

The common complaint is that the majority of the early pregnancy symptoms remind women of the symptoms usually experienced before and during their period (such as cramps, pain in the pelvic area, mood swings, fatigue, lower belly pain, tender breasts, and more symptoms). If you suspect that you might be pregnant, make sure to take a pregnancy test right away.

Can you have period symptoms but no period?

Yes, it is completely possible to experience period pain and other symptoms of the period without actually getting the menstrual cycle, stomach cramps included. This happens for various different reasons, many of which are medical conditions explained above.