Oh no, you've lost track of Aunt Flo again! It happens to the best of us. Whether it's because life got in the way or you were on that epic bender, there are ways to figure out when your last period was.
Why Tracking Your Period is Important
First things first, why should you even care about tracking your period? Well unbeknownst to a lot of women out there, consistent periods can be important indicators as to reproductive health. As The Vagina Bible author Jen Gunter explains "If someone has irregular periods or abnormal bleeding that needs investigation they'll [doctors] want detailed information about menstrual cycles." Lack thereof could lead your gynecologist down a path of unnecessary testing not realizing this might have been an accurate determination based on relevant information from basic cycle knowledge [Gunter].
Tracking also helps with family planning and knowing when pregnancy is likely--or decidedly unlikely--to happen.
Now let's get into it!
Step One: Check Your Birth Control Records
If you're one for birth control more than just condoms, checking pharmacy receipts or health insurance records can give insight as well "How To Know When You Got Your Last Period". This isn't going back too far though so apologies if you haven’t picked up any state funded contraceptives within six months maybe don’t put them at the top of your go-to list--
|Table||Pharmacy Supply Frequency|
|Pills||Received once per three month supply|
|Shot||Every Three Months|
Did You Switch Up?
Let's say hypothetically here that in between getting consecutive supplies (whether they come quarterly yearly monthly whatever) anything changed like switching contraception methods --well then over to the wonders of retrospective spotting.
Step Two: Retrospective Spotting
So what is retrospective spotting? Well, it's the fancy name for when you have a random bit of bleeding between periods that seems to have come out of nowhere but at some point is found to potentially explain your period-lapse. According to The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, "it is estimated that up to 9 percent of women experience breakthrough [spot bleeding] in oral contraceptive pill users can be as high as 68%." [ACOG]
How Does This Help?
If a woman knows she had an unexpected rogue flow in late October and her cycles are consistent with beginning on day one on average every twenty-nine days from July till November then it’s good news bears because you know Aunt Flo most likely visited earlier than later October [Gunter].
|July||First Day (FD) Cycle One|
|August||FD Cycle Two|
|September||FD Cycle Three|
|November||Missing September-like batch|
Step Three: Revisit Old Texts ¬es
You might be feeling like going through old phone notes like Brennan Huff did his middle school headshots isn't worth it but depending on how openly chatty you’ve been about discovering new bloodstains..it just may provide results...
- UGH felt bloated and heavy since MONDAY OCTOBER EVERYTHING HURTS PMSing?
- God blesses me with my period again finally thank god
Ignore the Details But Note Date Occurred
Like plugging numbers into Google Maps, if there are dates established at all along w/ descriptors maybe scrolling back shouldn’t so quickly lead one back into distress.
"Got my period back yesterday 🙁 L Heaviest I ever seen for two hours straight ???? What fresh zodiac sign inspired hell is this?" => Oct 19, 2020.
Step Four: Ask Your Body
Lastly, if the above doesn't pertain to you or in effort of utilizing all resources possible try communicating with your body.
Answer These Questions
- Have You Peeled? -> Off liberally gathered pantiliners only one week after potentially could’ve started your menstrual cycle for quick linen-upping purposes
- Did Aunt Flo Bless Someone Close By? When's their estimated due date?
- What Clothing Accommodations did Inspectors Request of Me?
Sure maybe you felt some cramping here and there and some sneaky bloating but really take a moment to recall any physical symptoms from the last few weeks that might suggest why your period came at X time [Gunter].
Having an idea of when your period was can be useful for reproductive health checks as well as pregnancy planning--which ultimately picks up steam/necessity based on w/e path chosen moving forward. Whether its scouring through receipts or asking those around you "Hey did I bleed on anything during my last visit?", the familiarity with one's anatomy should neither feel foreign nor abnormal rather more normalized once properly acquainted[The Good Place Writer Kassia Miller].