What is ovulation?
Ovulation is a process where a mature egg is released from one of the ovaries. Once released, the egg drifts to fallopian tube and there it survives for 24 hours. Here it meets a sperm & gets fertilised. A sperm can survive up to 7 days in the vagina or fallopian tube. By learning the signs & symptoms of ovulation, one can boost their chances of pregnancy. Ovulation happens a few weeks after menstruation.
A menstrual cycle lasts between 28 and 32 days. The timing of ovulation differs from woman to woman and can vary in each cycle. Ovulation can occur between 10 to 16 days of a cycle. So even with irregular periods, it is possible to conceive at some point in the cycle. There are certain circumstances where ovulation does not happen. If a woman has been taking birth control pills consistently she won’t ovulate immediately and women who are breastfeeding do not ovulate. Certain medications such as anti-depressants and other lifestyle factors also effect ovulation and menstruation. For these circumstances get diagnosed by a doctor. Any delay can reduce chances of pregnancy.
Common Signs of Ovulation
What are the signs of ovulation in a woman?
Ahead ovulation the entire body has a run-in with hormones. This causes a woman to experience various symptoms – mild abdominal pain, headache, back pain or nausea. It is important to note that ovulation symptoms vary from woman to woman and its possible that few women don’t experience any of these ovulation symptoms. How do you differ ovulation cramps Vs implantation cramps?
When trying to get pregnant knowing the body’s ovulation signs can help predict when ovulation is likely to occur. Knowing these signs can help to plan pregnancy when the Menstrual cycle is not like clockwork every month. Few signs of ovulation & post ovulation symptoms are explained here.
1. Change in Cervical Fluid
When you ovulate do you have a discharge? Cervical mucus is produced inside the cervix. Every menstrual cycle cervical mucus undergoes changes under the influence of hormones. Body thins its thicker vaginal fluids and creates ideal environment for the sperm to travel easily and meet the egg, released in that cycle. As ovulation nears the texture of these fluids change from sticky to slippery, and becomes stretchy and thin. It will also change in appearance from white or yellow to a more clear, translucent. Cervical mucus is also known as the signs of Ovulation Discharge. On the exact day of ovulation, the body produces the largest amount of these liquids, resulting in a wetter feel. Cervical fluids offer protection for the sperm and helps the sperm stay alive longer (up to five days inside a woman’s body!). The presence of cervical fluids prior to and during ovulation will increase your chances of getting pregnant.
2. Rise in Basal Body Temperature
Symptoms after ovulation if not pregnant include rise in body temperature as it varies each day. Basal Body Temperature is a person’s body temperature at rest. During ovulation Basal body temperature follows a certain pattern. By tracking Basal Body Temperature ovulation can be detected. At the beginning of your menstrual cycle body temperatures remain consistent. As you near ovulation there is a slight drop in Basal Body Temperature (BBT) followed by a sharp increase after ovulation. Typically, 0.4 to 1.0 degrees. Say a woman’s BBT averages between 97°F (36.1°C) and 97.5°F (36.4°C). After ovulation, it should rise 97.6°F (36.4°C) to 98.6°F (37°C). There might be occasional temperature spikes on other days, but after ovulation BBT goes up and stays higher till the end of cycle. If it doesn’t stay higher, you probably haven’t ovulated yet. The most fertile period is two days before basal body temperature rises. After ovulation progesterone is released. It warms the body for pregnancy. Hence increase in basal temperature.
To track your BBT.
- Start jotting temperature from the first day of your period. Record temperature each morning at the same time, as soon as you wake.
- Temperature measured in mouth are best. Place thermometer at base of tongue.
- Note the temperature drop and rise. Look for a sustained rise to confirm ovulation.
It’s important to take temperature before it naturally increases from movements, so it’s a good idea to set an alarm and take it before even sitting up in bed. Tracking basal body temperatures over few months can help map out bodies changes. Basal temperature measuring is the most reliable indicator of ovulation.
3. Abdominal Pain
Some women feel a mild pain, mild to sharp cramping, on one side of their abdomen. These signs and symptoms of ovulation pain occurs halfway through menstrual cycle. This is called “ovulation pain” which is also a common pregnancy symptoms after ovulation before missed period. Abdominal cramping is the most common sign of ovulation. The mild sign of ovulation cramping or pain on one side that usually happens in the lower abdominal area, typically on side (ovary) from which egg is released. This pain is called ‘mittelschmerz,’ a German word meaning ‘middle’ and ‘pain’. How long does ovulation pain last? The sensation can last anywhere between a few minutes and a few hours. If ovulation pain is persistent, consult a doctor to rule out uterine fibroids, ovarian cyst or other health issues.
4. Breast Tenderness
Right after ovulation body prepares itself for pregnancy and hormones are released. This increase in hormones specifically progesterone causes breast tenderness. Breast tenderness is another sign of ovulation. This symptom is experienced by a very few number of women. Progesterone prompts breasts to retain fluids, so they stretch slightly. This leads to tenderness. Breast tenderness and sensitivity are also the first signs of pregnancy. Remember that sensitivity or tenderness right after ovulation is not a pregnancy sign. Keeping tabs on ovulation chart also helps to rule out this uncertainty.
5. Nausea, Headaches and Heightened Senses
Nausea is one of the most common Signs and Symptoms of Ovulation that women detest. Some women have headaches and/or feel queasy before ovulation. The hormonal changes throughout the duration of ovulation can a make a person sensitive enough to feel nauseous and have headaches. Hormones can also influence your senses, resulting in heightened senses. For instance, senses of smell, taste, vision.
Knowing the most fertile time through ovulation signs can increase chances of getting pregnant sooner. A little bit of practice is needed to know the pattern of events that happen each cycle.
Apart from these signs & symptoms of ovulation Menstrual charting is a simple way to track ovulation. Identifying symptoms can sometimes become tedious. A menstrual chart also helps to identify the days for ovulation symptoms. Record the day your period begins and ends for few months. A normal menstrual cycle lasts between 28 and 32 days. Ovulation should occur between days 10-16.
A “fertile window” is a span of 6 days, the day that you ovulate and the five days before that. The last day of your fertile window, is when one of your ovaries releases an egg into a fallopian tube (Ovulation). In the fallopian tube the egg awaits the company of one of your partner’s sperm for fertilization. Once released, an egg only has a lifespan of about 24 hours. If the egg is not fertilized during this time, it disintegrates, triggering your next period.
Ovulation Prediction Kit
An Ovulation Prediction Kit measures the levels of luteinizing hormone (LH). Around the time of ovulation hormone levels increase. Ovulation prediction kit measures the level of LH in Urine. Use this kit in accord with Menstrual charts and Ovulation symptoms for best results.