Delaying a Period
How to stop your period
Sometimes a menstrual period will be due at an inconvenient time- a special occasion, a holiday, a wedding or a university examination. It can be useful to delay the period by a few weeks, until the timing is more acceptable. If you’ve ever wondered how to stop your period, there are a few ways this can be achieved- from oral progesterone tablets, to the contraceptive pill or long acting contraceptives. The FAQs below go through these options in more detail- so you can decide which one is best for you. Qoctor’s online prescription service can provide Norethisterone (Primolut). We also prescribe the combined oral contraceptive pill, though you’ll need to start it longer in advance if you wish to use it to skip a period.
Our products & prices
If you’d like to try a medication to delay your period, Qoctor will guide you through the process of getting an online prescription to help.
You can choose to have a paper prescription sent to your home, workplace or local pharmacy. Or for added convenience, order your medication online- Qoctor can send it to you via express delivery, wherever you are in Australia!
- Qoctor’s online doctor fee is just $19.99- this includes standard postage for your prescription or medication
- If you’re just getting a paper prescription, that’s it!
- If you order medication for delivery, the pharmacy price of the product you choose will make up the rest of the cost
- If you want express delivery, it’s an extra $4.99
- And we’ll always let you know about cheaper generic versions, where available!
Simply select the medication from the list below, and we’ll take you through a few questions to ensure it’s a good choice for you.
Common Questions and Answers
When a big event like a wedding or holiday crops up, and your period is due at the same time, it can be very frustrating- it may affect how you feel physically and mentally, what activities you can take part in, and what clothes you can wear. In such situations, women quite often come to their doctor to ask how to stop a period from occurring. So, what are the options and do they work? Well there are actually a few, depending on the circumstances, the time-frames involved, your preferences and medical history. The three main ways are Norethisterone (a progesterone tablet that you just take for a few weeks), the combined oral contraceptive pill, or a long acting contraceptive option. In the following FAQs we’ll describe how to stop your period with these medications.
Norethisterone (the common brandname is Primolut) is a progesterone hormone tablet, which works well in most cases. It must be started 3 days before a period is due, and then taken three times daily, usually just for a few weeks. When it’s stopped, a period will occur within a few days. It is NOT a contraceptive, so it will not prevent pregnancy. It is safe in most cases, but if a woman has certain health issues, such as an increased risk of clotting, it may not be the right choice. A doctor or online doctor will guide you through a series of questions if you’re considering it. It’s usually well tolerated, but side effects can include stomach upset, bloating, breast tenderness and reduced sex drive. The main advantage is that it can be used at short notice, if you need to delay a period that is only a week or two away.
The combined oral contraceptive pill (commonly just called “the pill”) may be a good option, provided it’s started in time. If an event is a few months away, it may be possible to start the pill in advance and then try skipping the sugar pills (i.e. take pill packs “back to back”). For many women, this will prevent a period. It doesn’t always work (some women still get a breakthrough bleed), so it’s a good idea to try it out at least once before the event or holiday. But if contraception is also needed, it can cover both bases. A doctor or online doctor such as Qoctor can go through a series of questions to make sure it’s a safe and suitable option for you.
Some women find that their periods stop if they use long term contraceptives such as the Mirena Coil, Implanon(the “rod”), or long-acting progesterone injection. However, the effects can vary from woman to woman, and it may take a few cycles for bleeding to settle, so it’s not very helpful if the event in question is soon. But many women who use one these options will find their periods become light or absent over time.
No- skipping periods is quite safe. If you think about it, pregnant women don’t have a period for 9 months and women who breastfeed for a long time may go a few years without periods- with no negative health effects. Whilst the contraceptive pill and long acting contraceptives can be used on an ongoing basis to stop periods, Norethisterone (Primolut) is generally only advised for a few weeks at a time, as it’s quite likely that progesterone related side effects will develop with longer term use.
The simple answer is no, none of these options affect future fertility- in most cases your ability to become pregnant returns the moment the medication is stopped or withdrawn. However, in the case of the long acting progesterone injection or “Depo injection”, it can take quite a few months for the effects to wear off- the return to fertility can be delayed by a number of months.
Health Library- Women’s Health
For more information on periods and women’s health, check out the articles below. There’s also lots of helpful information regarding menstrual problems available at the Royal Women’s Hospital website.
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