Young girls start their periods at various ages. Approximately how long does it take to be regular (i.e. roughly monthly)? If regularity does not occur, then at what point would seeking a doctor's advice be appropriate.

I ask this as a single father of a teen girl who is not currently regular, but had her first about 2 years ago. She's had 2 or 3 in the last year. The last was around 4 months ago.

  • 5
    Get her to log her periods (start/end dates) so you have scientific information then see a doctor.
    – dave
    May 22, 2014 at 3:01
  • 2
    How irregular are we talking?
    – Ana
    May 22, 2014 at 4:17
  • @Ana She's had 2 or 3 in the last year. The last was around 4 months ago. May 22, 2014 at 13:17
  • Just as a side note: If you are genuinely worried about something, seeking a doctor's advice is definitely appropriate. If you feel uneasy, you can usually phone the doctor's office - in most countries the employee answering the phone is medically trained, too, and can tell you if something really is too trivial for the doctor (which it rarely is).
    – sleske
    Sep 12, 2018 at 7:02

1 Answer 1


They could be sporadic her whole life, or she could just suddenly snap into a regular cycle; it's really different for each girl. Generally irregular periods are not a big issue unless you're older and trying to get pregnant yourself.

The simple answer is that she should talk to her doctor. If she's old enough to be menstruating, she should have her first pap smear.

It can be a sign that something else is off such as,

  • Hormones (there are a lot of chemicals in our environment that can throw off hormones. Just a random example, antibiotics and or growth hormones in dairy and meat can throw them out of whack, as well as flame retardants such as those on bed sheets.)
  • Low body weight (the body needs a certain fat content to menstruate)
  • Very high body weight (fat can change hormones and throws them off)
  • Poor diet and not enough vitamins/minerals
  • Lots of exercise (I knew athletes in high school that didn't menstruate while they were actively practicing for sports)

A really easy fix to this (again have her talk to her doctor) is the birth control pill because it will regulate all of her hormones and guarantee that it will come every 28 days.

  • Pap smears are to check for cervical cancer caused for hpv. You need them when you are sexually active; it has nothing to do with menstruating. They generally won't even do them until you hit your 20s nowadays. And birth control pills do not guarantee a regular period, much less a period exactly every 28 days, although they can help some women quite a lot.
    – Kat
    Sep 14, 2018 at 17:40

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