How to Make Your Period Come Faster

<p>Tashi-Delek / Getty Images	</p>

Tashi-Delek / Getty Images

Medically reviewed by Peter Weiss, MD

Menstrual periods are a natural monthly occurrence for people assigned female at birth, but sometimes a person may want to induce their period, starting it early. While no guaranteed method exists to induce a period, hormonal birth control is the most reliable way to manipulate the cycle. Also, some natural remedies and lifestyle changes may help.

It's essential to consult a healthcare provider before trying these methods. They could interfere with pregnancy, medication, or health conditions.

This article reviews how to use hormonal birth control to induce or delay periods. It also contains several natural and alternative techniques to help you get your period faster.

<p>Tashi-Delek / Getty Images</p>

Tashi-Delek / Getty Images

Consider Hormonal Birth Control

Using hormonal birth control is the most reliable way to control your menstrual cycle. This might include oral contraceptives (the pill), patches, injections, and implantable devices.

The pill is the most common way women can manipulate their period to induce, skip, or delay it. The following are techniques to manage your period with oral contraceptives:

  • Make your period come faster: Stop taking the pill containing hormones or switch to the placebo pill (the pills in the pack containing no contraceptive).

  • Delay your period: Take the hormone pill daily and skip the placebo pills.

Consult a healthcare provider before manipulating your menstrual period with hormonal birth control. They will let you know if it is safe to do so and help you manage possible side effects. Not all oral birth control works the same, so your provider may need to switch your medication.

If you change medications or how you take the pill, ask your healthcare provider if they suggest additional nonhormonal birth control for a month or two. This includes condoms, a diaphragm, a sponge, spermicides, or Phexxi (lactic acid, citric acid, potassium bitartrate) gel.

A “true” period is cyclical. It occurs a couple of weeks after ovulation (when the body releases an egg). If sperm does not fertilize an egg, then pregnancy does not occur. The body sheds the uterine lining it was preparing in case of pregnancy, causing menstrual bleeding or a period.

Hormonal contraceptives prevent ovulation. So, the bleeding that occurs when you are on hormonal birth control differs from an actual period. It is technically withdrawal bleeding due to the change in synthetic hormones from the medication.

Related:7 Period Facts Everyone Should Know

Get Extra Vitamin C

Vitamin C (ascorbic acid) is a water-soluble vitamin vital to your immune system and overall health. One study shows that combining oxaloacetate and vitamin C supplements can help alleviate PMS (premenstrual syndrome) symptoms, anxiety, stress, and depression.

While no scientific evidence supports the use of vitamin C for inducing menstruation, many people swear by this method.

The recommended amount of vitamin C is 75 milligrams per day (mg/day) for nonpregnant or non-lactating people. However, consuming extra amounts is relatively safe. Side effects of excessive vitamin C (over 2,000 mg/day) include diarrhea, nausea, and stomach cramps.

Foods that are high in vitamin C include:

  • Oranges, grapefruit, kiwi, cantaloupe, and strawberries

  • Spinach and kale

  • Brussels sprouts and broccoli

  • Red and green bell peppers

  • Tomatoes and tomato juice

There are theories that extra vitamin C could induce a period because it has a similar effect on the body as the hormone progesterone.

Progesterone levels increase after ovulation. If fertilization does not occur, progesterone and estrogen levels drop, triggering the menstrual period.

Take Emmenagogues (Period-Inducing Herbs)

Some herbs are emmenagogues, meaning they induce a menstrual period. People who practice Eastern medicine commonly use these herbs to make their period come faster.

Evidence of how emmenagogues work is purely anecdotal (based on personal observations), emmenagogue examples include:

  • Parsley

  • Ginger

  • Mugwort

  • Saffron

  • Cinnamon

  • Chamomile

  • Fennel

  • Sesame

  • Chaste tree (or chaste berries)

  • Temulawak or Java turmeric (Curcuma xanthorrhiza)

  • Common rue

These remedies—especially in large doses—should be avoided during pregnancy as they could cause a miscarriage or developmental problems in the fetus.

Eat Papaya or Pineapple

While scientific evidence is minimal, there is a long-standing claim that certain fruits, particularly papaya and pineapple, are natural emmenagogues. Papaya can affect progesterone levels, and pineapple may soften the cervix, triggering menstruation.

Consuming papaya or pineapple in large quantities can cause diarrhea or an upset stomach.

Manage Stress

Stress can delay your period by disrupting cortisol and endorphin levels, interfering with the hormones that regulate your period.

You can manage stress by engaging in relaxation techniques such as:

  • Decreasing workload (especially working late into the night)

  • Yoga (these poses can help relieve period pain)

  • Deep breathing exercises

  • Meditation

  • Journaling

  • Hot baths

  • Using a heating pad or hot water bottle

  • Spending time with friends and family

  • Participating in hobbies or something fun

  • Getting proper nutrition and plenty of sleep

Have Sex (or an Orgasm)

There is no scientific evidence that says sex or an orgasm speed up your period, but it may be worth a try. Having sex or an orgasm may help your pelvic muscles relax and decrease stress.

Evidence shows that an orgasm (from sex or masturbation) increases oxytocin. Oxytocin is a natural hormone that causes the uterus to contract.

There is also evidence that semen contains prostaglandins, which may help thin the cervix and could help induce a period.

Exposure to semen would require sex without a condom. You should only do this if you are in a monogamous relationship in which each partner has tested negative for sexually transmitted infections (STIs). Use another form of birth control to prevent pregnancy.


Regular exercise can help regulate your menstrual cycle and release endorphins, which help relieve stress. It can also improve blood circulation, balance hormones, and relax your pelvic muscles.

However, the body can interpret too much exercise as stress, which may lower your estrogen levels too much and lead to the absence of a period. If you’ve been intensely exercising lately, consider lighter exercises for a few days to see if that helps.

Related:How Exercise May Change Your Period

Reasons You Might Want to Induce Your Period

You may want to induce your period for various reasons, ranging from practical to medical concerns.

You might have an important upcoming event, such as the following, and don’t want to deal with the inconvenience of bleeding, cramping, and bloating:

  • Wedding

  • Prom

  • Athletic events (like swimming or gymnastics)

  • Vacation

  • Big presentation at work or school

Or, you might have a medical condition like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) that causes irregular periods. In this situation, a late or missed period could cause stress. This is especially true if someone is tracking their period and trying to conceive.

There are also situations in which you may want to start your period, such as after having unprotected sex, if you suspect birth control failed (like a broken condom), or after taking plan B (emergency contraceptive).

Your period is late (if you have regular cycles) when it’s five days later than normal. A period is missed when you don’t have menstrual bleeding for more than six weeks.

While a late or missed period is a sign of pregnancy, other early signs of pregnancy include:

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Breast tenderness

  • Fatigue

  • Mood swings

  • Dizziness

  • Frequent urination (peeing a lot)

  • Implantation bleeding

Making Your Period Come Faster: What’s Safe and Unsafe?

Lifestyle modifications such as stress reduction and exercise are safe; however, avoid overexercising. Taking medications, herbs, or supplements to induce periods without consulting a healthcare provider also may harm your health.

If you are pregnant or think you could be pregnant, avoid these measures as they could cause a miscarriage.

If you experience painful periods, consider the following for relief:

Related:Can Eating Certain Foods Make Period Pain Worse?


Some people may want to make their period come faster for various reasons, including upcoming events or pregnancy concerns. Hormonal birth control is the most reliable way of manipulating a menstrual period. It’s important to consult a healthcare provider first to ensure it’s safe for you.

There are natural and alternative options like vitamin C, certain herbs and fruits, and having sex. But, the evidence is minimal or anecdotal. Managing stress and regular moderate exercise can help you regulate your period. If you are, or think you may be pregnant, avoid these techniques as they could cause a miscarriage.