Getting pregnant > Testing for pregnancy > No positive but no period - what's going on?

No positive but no period - what's going on?

You're late but you're not getting a positive result when you take a pregnancy test - we explain why this could be.
You're late, the anticipation grows, you take the test but get a big fat negative - possibly one of the most disheartening experiences of trying for a baby. So, to help you figure out why aunt flo is missing in action but you aren't getting a positive test, we explaining what could be causing your body to play this incredibly confusing trick on you.

A false negative

Pregnancy tests are designed to detect the presence of the hormone hCG (human chorionic gonadotropin) in your urine. Your body releases this chemical shortly after you conceive and a fertilised egg has implanted in the lining of your womb. After your pregnancy becomes established the levels of hCG produced roughly double in quantity every day throughout your first trimester. So, by the time you miss a period (roughly two weeks after ovulation) they should be high enough to be picked up by a pregnancy test and able to give you a positive result.

However, technically it is possible to get a false negative result (where you are actually pregnant but it doesn't show up on the test) if, for example, you ovulated later than expected, used an older less sensitive pregnancy test that requires higher levels of hCG to be present for a positive result to appear, or took the test after later in the day after drinking a lot of water (it's best to test the first time you go to the toilet after waking as hCG levels will be higher and more likely to be detected soon after waking).

Because of this, if you have missed a period but get a negative pregnancy test result it can be a good idea to re-test a few days later, making sure you following the instructions to the letter, just to be sure that your negative isn't a positive in disguise.

Irregular periods

Whether or not you usually suffer with irregular periods it's completely normal to experience some variation in the length of your cycle. For this reason it is possible that you actually ovulated later than expected meaning that implantation would not have occurred until a little later and consequently levels of hCG would not be sufficient to produce a positive test result at this time. However, by the same thread it is possible that your period will simply come a little later than expected too.

Coming off contraception

Hormonal contraceptives such as the pill work by artificially controlling the balance of reproductive related hormones in your body. So, once you stop taking them it can be several months before your body is able to reestablish the natural rhythm of its own menstrual cycle. For this reason it is possible that your periods will be irregular for a couple of months as your cycle and hormone fluctuations return to normal, potentially making you late or even miss a period entirely on occasion.

It is because of the time that it takes for your cycle to regain its natural regularity that many health care professionals recommend holding off trying to get pregnant for a couple of months after coming off hormonal contraception because it is much easier to confirm your pregnancy and estimate the likely date of conception and your baby's developmental age if you conceive when your cycle has returned to 'normal'.


Prolonged stress and anxiety can upset your body's hormonal balance to such an extent that your regular menstrual cycle is disrupted and menstruation is delayed. For this reason it's important to stay as calm as possible on a day to day basis whether the cause of your stress if the fact that you're trying to conceive or something else. Talking about both how your feeling and the cause of your anxiety should help you to feel a little better while getting enough sleep, exercising regularly and eating well will leave you feeling better able to cope.


While moderate exercise is likely to improve your general health, help to balance your hormones and consequently boost your fertility, it is possible that excessive exercise such as that undertaken by professional athletes and those training for a marathon may cause menstruation to cease temporarily. If you feel that this is something that may apply to you it is advisable to discuss the suitability of your training program with your doctor.


Just as with excessive exercise, being very under or overweight or severely restricting your diet can disrupt the hormonal balance that controls your menstrual cycle and ability to conceive. If you think you may have some weight issues that are affecting your ability to get pregnant it's a good idea to seek advice from your doctor as soon as possible as they will be able to advise you on the best course of action.

Medical issues

There are a number of medical conditions that will cause you to miss a period and get a negative result when you take a pregnancy test. So, it's generally advised that if you miss 3 or more consecutive periods you visit your doctor so that he or she can investigate whether there is an underlying problem that needs treating.

Have you been confused by missing a period but getting a negative test result? Why not visit the AskBaby forums and share your experiences and questions with other AskBaby members who are also trying to conceive.

Chat or Ask a Question:

If you have a question about this article or something else, visit our friendly forums & ask the AskBaby community.

Chat about no positive but no period - what's going on? with our friendly community...

Your Comments:

We'd love to hear your comments on this article...

Login to add your comment:

Email: Password:
Not yet a member? Join thousands of other parents and parents-to-be... Sign Up Now!
Forgot your

Hi, I am 19 my partner is 25. My period is regularily every 21 days amd lasts up tp 7 days. I was due on the 21st of sept but am now a week late. I am going to the toilet ALOT but am also constipated amd have been for the past 3 weeks, I am extremely queasy amd very sensitive to smells such as meat. This had all started 3 days ago, yesterday and the day begorw I cpuldnt stop burping amd felt like I would vomit every time. I have also been extremely emotional and crabby lately. We decided to take a hpt this afternoon but came out negative! I was certain it would come back positive, I have this feeling in my body that I am pregnant, I am 95% sure, with or with out the symptoms.
I just want a bit of advice, I'm going to try amd book in tp the doctor tomorrow was wondering if I shpuld take another hpt in the morning or shpuld I wait another week?
My partener and myself were over the moon to thinl we were about to start a family and then for it to come back as no destroyed us
If any one has any possible explaination as to why please reply!
by manda2107 14th Oct 2013, 12:48pm
Iam so happy that m not alone.i also missed period but megative waiting for periad....
by fattu 20th Jun 2013, 3:48pm
hi,... i got married in march 10 2012, we did not use condoms because we want baby after first month my periods late about 5 to 6 days the next month they came after 10 days and this month they came after 17 days i m very tense about that plz guide me whats the problem??
by 51184 20th Jun 2013, 3:19pm
Hi...i had the implant for about 6months I soon got married and has it removed this was in 2009 after a whole year of waiting and refusing to go to the doctors i still hadn't come back on my periods, i gained sooo much weight (stretch marks to prove it :o( ) i tried herbal medication for 5months in which i did start my October 24th 2010 i came on my periods BY MY SELF! but i made up for the roughly two years i hadn't come on ( ewww ) me and my partner had intercourse when i was ovulating round 13th..we tried a pregnancy test yesterday as my periods hadnt come, but to my dismay it was negative...should i try the test later in few days time if i dont come on?? is there a chance of pregnancy??

hello! what kind of herbal medication did you use? because I have a hormonal imbalance and I only use birth control pills in order to get my period every month:( can you please help me. thank you..
by lonelymum 25th Jan 2012, 9:35am
Hi i am now two weeks late I took a test and it came back negative I drank lots of water before the test but ive been cramping having head aches and I also have this white watery discharge no burning or itching please help(: im new to this site I also had unprotected sex many times that month.
by Maria123456 6th Jul 2011, 9:05am
Hi...i had the implant for about 6months I soon got married and has it removed this was in 2009 after a whole year of waiting and refusing to go to the doctors i still hadn't come back on my periods, i gained sooo much weight (stretch marks to prove it :o( ) i tried herbal medication for 5months in which i did start my October 24th 2010 i came on my periods BY MY SELF! but i made up for the roughly two years i hadn't come on ( ewww ) me and my partner had intercourse when i was ovulating round 13th..we tried a pregnancy test yesterday as my periods hadnt come, but to my dismay it was negative...should i try the test later in few days time if i dont come on?? is there a chance of pregnancy??
by kiranb 17th Nov 2010, 9:43am
Ok i have never done anything like this but I am confused. I just had the merina iud removed sept. 7 I had 1 period but have not had another.. I have took 3 hpt and they have all been neg. but with my first child the hpt was neg. to and then i went to the dr. and i was 3 months but i am really confused wondering if anyone else has had this problem, the dr told me to wait until nov. 8th and if no positive test and no period then come to the dr but i just wish i knew what my body was doing, and i have been extremely tired and moody and my baby's father to be has been eating everything what is up please help!!!!!
by confused25 28th Oct 2010, 9:06am
I have been with my partner for 8 years now. On the 15th August 2005 I miscarried. I was 14weeks into my pregnancy.
I have PCOS which I was diagnosed with at the age of 14. We have not used any contraception since the miscarriage. my periods are usually very close together, I would bleed for around 7 days then have around 12days break then bleed again for 7days.
My doctor has told me that this can be common with PCOS sufferers. My periods have been this way since I was 13 and haven't changed. Although this time I have not had a period from the 2nd September. I got really excited about this and so my partner and I done quite a few pregnancy tests, varied from clear blue, digital tests, dip tests and they have all came back negative :( .
I think I have convinced myself that we are pregnant as I haven't even had a cramp(which i normally am quite bad with). I have been getting very very very bad headaches and feel tired all the time.
I am desperate to be pregnant. Please help
by wannabemummy85 18th Oct 2010, 4:36pm
Hi I'm not trying for a baby I'm only 21 n am not ready for kids. I am on the pill and take it everyday. My last period was on 12 June n I'm now 1 week late I'm always regular on the pill or not. Both my tests have been negative which has made me a little less anxious but period is showing no signs of appearing. I have certain things related to being pregnant peeing a lot headaches dizziness fatigue etc but I am honestly hoping its not pregnancy and something else I don't think I could handle finding out in another 2 weeks I'm pregnant. I do wish the best of luck to everyone trying to conceive.
by playdoh46 12th Aug 2010, 10:31am
Hi new to all this forum stuff, i have missed two periods, taken two test both Negative results. I keep getting pains as if the period is on its way but nothing happens . Any ideas whats going on as i am so confused.
by keltrying 12th Aug 2010, 10:10am
Hi, I came of the pill last Aug (2009) and my periods have been irregular ever since, but have came every month at some point, been trying for baby since last Aug to no avail, been using ovulation calculator on internet and according to it my period was due last Sat (26th) it never came and still hasn't, been feeling weird since Sat afternoon - really tired, nausea, dizzy and other aches which i'm not sure if related or not , i even went to my bed to sleep for a bit on sat afternoon because i was so tired which is not like me, also been getting a lot of acid coming back up my throat, i did a HPT on Mon and it was negative, i am so hoping this is it and i am pregnant at last, trying not to think i could be just in case though but as each day passes with no period i can't help it. Any advice/comments on what i should do would be appreciated.
by stb2812 12th Aug 2010, 10:05am
hi Elizabeth2709
I've also just signed up to this today, I had the mirena for 4 years my first period started exactly 3 days after I had it removed so my next cycle should have commenced today 28th june. So far no sign apart from the cramps but the test was negative I've just read that this could be due to doing the test late in the day and depending on when I might have actually conceived! So I will retest towards the end of the week on my first trip to the loo in the morning unless of course I have a period in the mean time. Unlike most contraceptives the mirena coil is not hormone controlled so your periods should regain normality straight away though everyone is different and sometimes it takes a couple of months to become regular again. If you still have no luck by the end of July go and see your GP for a health check just to be sure good luck and take care x @/(*_*)|@
by claireblundred 12th Aug 2010, 9:50am
Hi, I happen to realize just the other day that I hadn't started my period yet. Ive been writting them down the last few months and they have been every 26 days. Im 26 and Ive been bleeding for 13 years now. Never have I had a period arrive after 30 days. Ive always been 26-29 days(very regular). Mostly 26 or 27 to be exact. So at day 29 when I realized I should have had a period a few days earlier I bought a pregnancy test. Granted it was 11pm(and almost day 30 with no period) I took it. It was negative. Another day has gone by and nothing. This has never ever happend that I made it over 30 days in my life with out a period. Im not really cramping either. I keep thinking I feel a faint something like a cramp but then nothing. Maybe thats in my head to. Im not trying to get pregnant at all, since Im currently finishing my bachelors degree. My fiance and I have used the pull out method for 5 years. Im not sure what to think. The last couple days I can't get it off my mind, am I or not and if not what is the situation. I have not been overly stressed or had any major changes in the last month. Not sure what to think. Advice anyone?
by JK29 12th Aug 2010, 9:49am
hi, I had awfully sore breasts, extreme fatigue, upset stomach, bloating and generally not feeling well, missed period until 1 week ago, when i got my period for one day, very light, that is.
it stopped last saturday and i tested this sunday but the test is negative, could i be pregnant????
by TAPS 12th Aug 2010, 9:43am
I stopped taking the pill (micro) in sept 2009 i had two periods.My last one was in dec 2009. Still have not had a period. I have been to the doc who done a blood test and said my hormone level was fine. What is wrong then?? I really want to start trying for a baby and its really getting me down :( what can i do ??? HELP!!
by pinkglitter 11th Jun 2010, 5:31pm
Hi, Just signed up to this today as i would love to hear from anyone else in my situ or has experience of it! I had Mirena Coil removed on 29th April, had 2 minute spots on 5/5 and 14/5 and nothing since and negative preg tests. Cramps have gone and im feeling more back to normal now than i did when first got it out, but was wondering whether anyone had similar experience or how long it took to conceive after removal.. never had one period in 3.5 year whilst having Mirena so not sure if its taking my body longer than normal to recover!!Help and advice needed... Trying best to conceive...
Fingers x it'll happen soon.. ;-)
by Elizabeth2709 11th Jun 2010, 5:27pm
hi there, me n my boyfriend were trying for a baby for 5 months. this month i missed my period so i did a test which was negative (gutted) so i did one the week after that and it was negative (gutted again). i gave up hope n just thought i missed a period. then i did another test a week after that which made it 3 weeks after i was due on and it was POSITIVE (happy). i am nearly 8 weeks pregnant. a message to all of you.....never give up hope and the more u dont plan the mor likely it will just happen.good luck
by joanneturner 11th Jun 2010, 5:24pm
im 8 weeks late 4 my period,ive had spotting a few days ago,and the last time i had sex was a few days before my last period,ive done 2 pregnancy tests and both were negative.should i wait and do another incase they were wrong?im really confused.
by chez2010 14th May 2010, 5:34pm
me and my husband are trying for baby no 2. We have only tried for month so now I have just finished my period. Counting down again till ovulation. I just it all stressful. Anyway I will update my progess about signs and symtoms after ovulation. Wish me luck lol.
by Tryfor2 14th May 2010, 5:25pm
Hi there, i have been TTc with my boyfirend for sometime now, we have been workin out our dates of conception and body temp, herbal remidis, vitamins the lot, we didnt really expect it to help, im now nearly 2 weeks late with endless negative results,, have never missed or been late before,, jus so dishearend as we thought it had actually work,,, have some symptoms such as terrible back aches and pains, very bad dizzyness, nausier, sickness, passin out and sore swollen boobs,, i just want to be pregnant =( xx
by mimiloux 14th May 2010, 4:27pm
Hi there this is the first time on a chat website regarding pregnancy. I came off the pill in November last year (2009) and had a long and normal period on the 3rd December and 2nd January 2010. I was sue my period on the 30th January but it never arrived. I am now 10 days late!! I have done 3 tests already and all say negative. The only signs of possible preganancy is severe back ache all the time, taste & smell are more sensitive and I am very tired and emotional all the time. I just cant stop thinking that I am pregnant but I am also trying to calm down and destress as I know this could help my periods appear. Please help I really dont know what to think anymore......I really want to be pregnant please help xx
by Rack28 10th Feb 2010, 5:03am
well its now feb and i aint had a period since aug the doctor said its due to stress but im nott o sure please someone help!!!!!!!!
by iamsam188 10th Feb 2010, 5:01am
im now 2 weeks late took a test after a week and noting its so stress ful
by marsh11 11th Jan 2010, 4:16pm
I came off the pill in october and still no AF! Any ideas? I have taken 2 tests and BFN
by NickyNoodles22 30th Nov 2009, 11:27am
I also have been trying for a baby and took a pregnancy test that showed negative 10 days ago. My period has still not arrived but I am putting off taking another test because it is just so disheartening to get all psyched up to take a test and then only seeing one line. I had the same problem when trying to conceive the first time (my baby is now 13 months) - periods started getting progressively later, 6 weeks apart, then 7 weeks, then 8 weeks. I now think that it is the anticipation of getting pregnant that is making my body act like this. I can't even remember when my last period was - maybe 8 weeks ago. I have felt like I'm pregnant for about the last 3 weeks now, I have even been having the same cravings I had the first time I was pregnant. If I pluck up the courage to take another test I'll let you know the result! K x

Update - Preggers!!!!! Yay! :)
by Mellowmum 2nd Nov 2009, 10:45am
Hello everyone,
We have been trying for 7 months and aren't having much luck either! I used to have a very regular 28 day cycle but once we started trying I seemed to be late every month resulting in the same disappointing negative pregnancy test result every month with my period showing up a few days later.
I know base my cycles on 33/34 days and they have been comin in on time every month, until this month. I am no on day 36 but test result last night showed another negative result.
i have a 7 year old son already so know there are no problems in concieving but it is starting to turn into a bit of an obsession with me and I feel very low at times.
I am going to Tenerife All Inclusive a week tomorrow as we both needed a break but would really like to either get a positive result or period before then so I know where I am before I throw a load of alcohol down my neck!
Anyone experienced anything similar?

by Tor82 19th Oct 2009, 10:45am
me and my husband have been trying for a baby for 3 years now. Everytime I am late I do test get a negative and my period arrives about 2 weeks late. This time I am a whole 6 weeks late today and still getting negative results. I have a scan next Monday but its really hard not to get my hopes up. I have heard about someone being pregnant and not producing enough hormone until she was 8 weeks pregnant. Has anyone else heard of this? Im hoping that is the reason and am looking forward to next week wish me luck everyone!!
by KWILSON 22nd Sep 2009, 10:25am
Me and my parnter have been trying for a baby for ages now when ive misseed a period ive suddleny comeon. i am now 3 days late and when i did a test it come up neg. we are now waitng BUT not getiin out hopes up. we are due to have a pregencey test next week. hopefully it comes up with the result we want. but its all about waiting.
by ShareenElliisBabyx 8th Jun 2009, 9:59am
me and my boyfriend have been trying for a baby for a while now. i am currently two and a half weeks late but after two pregnancy tests at 2 days late and a week late with a negative result i am starting to get a little disheartened this time. i will be testing again in a few days time. im trying to leave it as long as possible so that i allow time for the hcg to be at a high enough level if i am pregnant, im just keeping my fingers crossed :)
by Beki91 29th May 2009, 9:32am
hi me and my boyfriend have been trying for a baby 8months now thats when ive came off the pill in september but still no luck ive always had regular periods but my last period was 2nd march i still havent come on now. i did a test this afternoon it showed negotive, ill try it again in the morning. why is getting pregnant taking so long is there something wrong with me im only 29yrs old.
by flowerpotttt 20th Apr 2009, 9:38am
Hi, I came off the pill about 8 months ago and my periods have been about 6-7weeks since coming off.
Its now been 8 weeks and i took a test yesterday and got a negative......i did take the test at around 2pm and had had quite abit of fluid.
I feel like im experiencing period cramps, the ones that make you want to curl up in a ball! and have been peeing quite more than normal.I also had my other halfs nephew crawling all over me the other night and had arms and elbows in my lower tummy and it felt really uncomfortable.
I was really expecting the test to come back positive. What are the other reasons my period isnt coming or why am i feeling like this?? xx
by Dawn632 23rd Feb 2009, 1:10pm
hi , i've missed a period and have taken 4 pregnancy tests and two came back negative and the other two have come back positive, i have all the signs of pregnancy but i heard about something called a phantom pregnancy where you also get all the same signs as a normal pregnancy. can you suggest something that i can do to find out weather i am pregnant? x
by daly1 29th Jan 2009, 8:57am
hello its my first time hear . im trying for a baby and my period is late but all the tests are negitive any ideas im going mad not knowin x
by dobbsey 22nd Dec 2008, 8:52am
ive missed two periods and taken two tests, but both of them were negative. my periods are irregular, but not like this. i havent been stressed, i hadnt changed my diet BEFORE i missed them, but now im ALWAYS hungry, i pee A LOT more and i get wicked bad headaches at least once a day. not only that, but im pretty exhausted even when i get a good nights sleep, and i get strange, random and sometimes excruciating stomach pains every day. i want to make an appointment, but i dont want to waste the money if theres no reason to go. what should i do??
by princ3nsimilla 24th Oct 2008, 9:03am