Ovulation is the time when a mature ovum is released from ovary into the fallopian tube and the ovum is available for fertilisation. Only when the ovum is present in the fallopian tube will pregnancy take place after fertilisation. There is a time period for ovulation and it falls according to the menstrual cycle. Thus, understanding the ovulation time is the key to getting pregnant.
Ovulation is easy to track if you have regular menstrual period. A normal menstrual cycle is between 28 to 31 days. Those who have irregular periods the menstrual cycle may be shorter or longer. Ovulation usually occurs in the mid point of the menstrual cycle. It occurs between day 11 and day 21 from the first day of the last menstrual period.
After ovulation, the egg lives for only 12 to 24 hours after which it dies and is absorbed into the uterus. Fertilization has to take place during this period. During ovulation there is only one egg released from the ovary. It is important to remember that you may menstruate without an ovulation. Likewise, you may ovulate in the absence of a menstrual period.
How to Track Ovulation
There are different ways to track ovulation.
Ovulation period usually falls between day 11 and day 21 from the first day of your last menstrual period in a regular menstrual cycle. Ovulation is supposed to occur on the day 14.
The cervical mucus becomes clear and slippery just before ovulation. Ovulation is the period when there are the chances of getting pregnant.
The change in the cervical mucus ensures the easy transport of the sperm up through the female genital tract and into the fallopian tube. The mucus changing into cloudy or disappearing altogether suggests the end of the fertile period.
Basal Body Temperature
There are special thermometers to measure basal body temperature. There is a rise in basal body temperature by 0.4 to 1.0 degree during ovulation. This rise is so subtle that it is recommended you measure the basal body temperature every day, the first thing in the morning. Plot a graph and you will notice the change. That is an indication you have ovulated. But you are most fertile 2 or 3 days before ovulation.
Some feel mild lower abdominal discomfort before ovulation. You may also notice spotting during ovulation.
Ovulation Predictor Kits
There are ovulation predictor kits available. They usually detect the rise in leutinizing hormone in the urine. The LH surge occurs before ovulation. But there are chances of LH surge even without ovulation. There are also chances that ovulation may occur but no LH is detected in your urine. Do follow the instructions on the kit. Start using the kit on the day 11 from the first day of your last menstrual period and continue till day 20. This kit may not prove effective for those with irregular menstrual cycle.
What To Do?
Remember that only one egg is released during an ovulation and it remains only for 12 to 24 hours in the fallopian tube. A sperm can live up to 5 days depending on conditions. So it is best advised to have regular intercourse even before your ovulation period. Studies have shown taking folic acid helps in conception. Adopt a healthy lifestyle with well balanced meals and exercises. Remember ovulation can be affected by stress and illness.