Ovulation And The Menstrual Cycle
Where does ovulation fit into your overall menstrual cycle?
Your menstrual cycle resets the day that your menstrual flow begins. This is the start of the follicular phase, where the egg matures and is later released during ovulation.
During the follicular phase, your body will release follicle-stimulating hormone that helps the egg inside your ovary mature and prepare for release.
Once the egg is mature, your body releases a surge of luteinizing hormone , triggering the eggs release. Ovulation usually happens around day 14, in the 28 to 36 hours after the LH surge.
After ovulation comes the luteal phase. If pregnancy occurs during this phase, hormones will keep the lining from shedding. Otherwise, bleeding will start around day 28 of the cycle, beginning the next cycle.
In short: Ovulation generally occurs in the middle of the menstrual cycle.
How Many Days After My Period Can I Become Pregnant
For many women, monthly menstrual cycles are very predictable, allowing them to easily track and know when to expect their monthly period. When they decide they want to have a baby, a few simple calculations can help them figure out the most fertile times to try to conceive. The technique also works in reverse, and they can estimate the best times to avoid intercourse if birth control isnt an option.
While its not possible to guarantee you can pinpoint your most fertile days for conception every month, some real science is behind the method used to calculate a best guess. Whether you want to conceive or add an extra layer of protection to your birth control method start by using these tips to calculate when you could become pregnant.
Egg And Sperm Lifespan
Once released, your egg isnt viable for very long. You have from 12 to 24 hours after ovulation to get pregnant, according to the American Pregnancy Association.
Your egg isnt the only factor in getting pregnant. Your partner also needs to provide sperm to fertilize it. The length of time sperm can live varies. Some only live for a short while, and other may live up to seven days inside of you. On average, sperm remain viable for two or three days in your reproductive tract.
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What Happens During Ovulation
Ovulation is a monthly occurrence for women of childbearing age. It usually takes place around day 14 of a 28-day menstrual cycle. During this process, an egg is released from one of your ovaries and travels from your fallopian tube to your uterus.
The release of an egg isnt a spontaneous occurrence. Rather, different factors take place prior to ovulation. Follicles in one of your ovaries start to mature between days 6 and 14 of your menstrual cycle.
Around days 10 and 14, an egg develops from one of these follicles. This egg is then released from the ovary on day 14.
Some women dont give much thought to their menstrual cycle or track ovulation. But ovulation plays a big role in conception. So if youre planning a family, it helps to know how long ovulation lasts.
More Ways To Predict The Most Fertile Days After Period
Because a womans cycle is not always exactly 28 days and many women have irregular menstrual cycles, there are other things you can pay attention to in order to identify when you are ovulating. Things like the cervical mucus and your basal body temperature can help you tell exactly when you are ovulating, so you can get pregnant or avoid getting pregnant, whichever you are looking for.
1. Watch Cervical Mucus Changes
The consistency of the cervical mucus changes throughout the menstrual cycle. After having your period for five days, you will have about 3-4 days in which you have little cervical mucus. The moistness of the mucus increases every day so that the wettest day is about day 9 of your cycle. The mucus at this stage is easily recognizable. It should be clear, stretchy, slippery and should have the appearance of egg whites. You need this type of cervical mucus in order for the sperm to travel up into the uterus. Ovulation generally happens when you’ve had the stretchy type of mucus for about 1 to 2 days.
2. Record Your Basal Body Temperature
Before you ovulate, the temperature of your body stays about the same when you check it every morning before getting out of bed. As you near the ovulation time, there may be a dip in the basal body temperature followed by a spike in temperature after you ovulate. This spike in temperature indicates that you have just ovulated.
3. Use Ovulation Predictor Kits
4. Notice Abdominal Pain or Spotting
5. Feel Breast Tenderness
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When Do You Ovulate After Your Period
Whether youre planning to become pregnant in the most natural way possible, or experimenting with natural family planning methods, its essential that you know exactly when you ovulate after your period.
Miss that tiny window of opportunity and you could face yet another disappointing month without being able to fall pregnant. Or you might misjudge your bodys signals and accidently conceive when you werent planning to.
So the big question is, when exactly do you ovulate after your period? And how on earth do you know when youve got the date right? Lets take a look.
Can You Get Pregnant Right After Your Period
Many people get confused about their menstrual cycles affect on fertility. We spoke with experts to learn whether you can get pregnant immediately after your period.
You mightve heard that you cant get pregnant right after your period. But in actuality, people sometimes can conceive by having sex immediately following menstruation, if the sex involves penis in vagina intercourse. We spoke with experts to learn more.
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Day 1: An Egg Is Released
One of the ovarian follicles bursts, releasing its egg into one of two Fallopian tubes, which are attached to either side of the uterus. Sometimes people know theyâre ovulating because they have mild to moderate pain with ovulation, called Mittelschmerz. This usually goes away within a few hours but can last for a day or two.
The egg survives in the Fallopian tube for about 24 hours, where it could be fertilized by a sperm. It disintegrates if not fertilized. Calagias points out that âsperm can remain viable and capable of fertilizing an egg for around 72 hours.â â
How To Know When Ovulation Occurs For Cycles Longer Or Shorter Than 28 Days
Because the length of the luteal phase is relatively rigid, its easy to determine when you ovulated once your period starts: about 14 days ago. Its not as easy to determine when you will ovulate. But a few tools can help you estimate:
Tracking your cycle
Tracking can help you identify patterns in your cycle and estimate a cycle length thats typical for you. You can roughly calculate your ovulation day by subtracting 14 days from your average cycle length.
Say your average cycle is 32 days . A 14-day luteal phase would put your ovulation day around Day 18 of your cycle.
Say your average cycle is 22 days. A 14-day luteal phase would put your ovulation day around Day 8 of your cycle.
Keep in mind its normal for your cycle length to fluctuate from month to month, so this method is just an estimate.
Also keep in mind this method assumes your luteal phase is 14 days long. While 14 days is typical for most, the luteal phase can vary between 10 and 16 days. If youre on either end of that range, its more accurate to determine your average ovulation day using an ovulation test strip, or by taking your temperature.
Ovulation test strips
Ovulation test strips are over-the-counter sticks you pee on, and they reveal when youll ovulate. Its recommended you start using ovulation test strips no later than Day 8 of your cycle, then continue to test every day until you see a positive test. A positive test usually means youll ovulate within the next 24 to 36 hours.
Mild pelvic pain
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If Conditions Arent Right Ovulation Wont Happen
The development and release of an egg each cycle occurs in response to the intricate ups and downs of your reproductive hormones. Ovulation is impacted by energetic, nutritional, emotional, and socioeconomic factors.
Short-term factors like jet lag, seasonal changes, stress, and smoking can have an effect, as well as longer-term factors like PCOS and thyroid disorders .
What Is A Luteal Phase
The luteal phase is the second half of your menstrual cycle, beginning at ovulation and ending with a new period or pregnancy. This is when you have a huge surge of three important hormones:
- Follicle stimulating hormone: Is released into your bloodstream by the pituitary gland to stimulate ovarian follicles to secrete estrogen and produce a mature egg .
- Luteinizing hormone: Is also released into your bloodstream by the pituitary gland in response to rising estrogen levels. This important hormone triggers the ovarian follicle to release the egg for potential fertilization.
- Progesterone: While estrogen plummets with ovulation, progesterone begins its climb to help nourish and thicken your uterine lining for potential egg implantation. Your progesterone levels will continue to rise if you become pregnant, as it literally helps to pro-gest your fertilized egg.
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How Many Days After Period Do You Ovulate If Your Period Cycle Last 28 Days
If you have a regular 28 days cycle, we can predict your next period and next ovulation.
Lets say period started 2nd of March, your next period and ovulation days respectively are 30th and 16th December. If your period normally last for 5 days, it stops on the 7th of march which is 9 days before ovulation.
Check Your Basal Body Temperature
It’s also a good idea to pay attention to the signs that your body is ready to ovulate. Checking your basal body temperature is one way to do this.
The BBT is your temperature first thing in the morning. Just after you ovulate, it rises slightly — sometimes by less than a degree — and stays higher until your period starts. If you record your temperature every day, you can spot the subtle changes that mean one of your ovaries has released an egg.
To take your BBT, you need to:
Use a basal body thermometer. It’s more sensitive than a standard one and will show temperature changes down to a fraction of a degree. You can get them at many pharmacies for less than $20.
Take your temperature at the same time each morning. Always do it before you get out of bed. Even getting up to go to the bathroom can affect your body temperature. So can smoking, drinking, or getting a bad night’s sleep.
Remember, your BBT won’t tell you exactly when you’ve ovulated, and it may take a couple of months before you start to see a pattern. You’re most likely to get pregnant 2 or 3 days before your ovary releases an egg, and then another 12 to 24 hours after that. When your temperature has spiked for 3 days, your chances of conceiving drop.
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When Do You Ovulate
Ovulation is when a mature egg is released from one of the ovaries. Its then pushed down the fallopian tubes toward the uterus. If a sperm manages to fertilize the egg during its journey, it implants in the uterine lining and grows to become a fetus. If not, the egg disintegrates into the uterine lining and is shed during menstruation. The moment an egg is released from the ovaries is instantaneous.
Ovulation is a complex hormonal event it doesnt just happen out of the blue. Early in your menstrual cycle, multiple follicles begin to mature inside of your ovaries. One of them eventually becomes dominant, growing faster than all the others. This dominant follicle is the one that will be released from your ovary during ovulation.
You can use a variety of methods to track your cycle and figure out when ovulation occurs.
Response 11th February 2016 From Shanna
Same over here
These questions are right where I am. Your answers are really the most helpful info Ive read in the past two years. Ive had saliva hormone tests done and they came back ok. Very slightly low progesterone. I have acne on my back, its horrible!! I have been gluten free for 4+ years, relatively clean diet. How can I get more info from you? Can I email you? Thank you, very much.
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Ive Been Using Contraception Will This Affect My Cycle
This depends on what type of contraception youve been using. If youve been taking the pill, your period may be irregular when you first come off it, so try to give yourself up to 3 months for your natural menstrual cycle to get back to its normal routine.
The first period after stopping the pill is known as a withdrawal bleed. The next one after this is your first natural period.
The contraceptive injection can also affect your cycle. Your periods may change and become irregular, heavier, shorter, lighter or stop altogether. This can carry on for some months after you stop the injections.
If you use the contraceptive implant your fertility will return to normal as soon as it is taken out.
The Fertile Window Includes:
- the 5 days before ovulation
- the day of ovulation
Simple. Just calculate your window and enjoy worry-free romps for the rest of the month, right?
Not so fast. Like sex, your bodys schedule can be beautifully messy. Its more art class than math class.
Even during your period, when pregnancy-friendly progesterone is low, your body is prepping for its next fertile window. Sometimes, your ovaries get eager and release an egg early. Or sometimes you skip an ovulation day.
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How To Accurately Calculate When You Ovulate
Whilst this might sound rather confusing, it really doesnt need to be. Because there are several easy methods you can use to accurately predict and monitor how long after your period you ovulate.
Step #1: Track Your Periods
Firstly, keep track of your periods for at least six months. You dont need any kind of fancy equipment to do this, just your favorite calendar and a pen, or even an online calendar. You can also download an app to help but I usually find that simple is best.
On the first day of your period, make a note in your diary. Period Day 1 is what works for me. Then count 22 days forward and make a rough note of this too so you can best keep track of the length of your cycle. Then when you start to menstruate, you can pinpoint the exact length of your cycle.
Then simply repeat the process. After several cycles, you should start seeing a pattern that is unique to you.
Step #2: Calculate Your Possible Ovulation Days
Once you have worked out your typical cycle length, you can turn your attention to your ovulation dates.
If youre usually quite regular, you can get a rough idea by taking the length of your usual cycle, subtracting 16 days and then adding four. If your cycle lasts 27 days, so you would do the following:
27-16=11 then11+4= 15.
Then you can conclude that you are most likely to ovulate on day 15 of your cycle .
Obviously this method isnt fool-proof, so do be careful.
Step #3: Watch For Signs Of Ovulation
These signposts include:
How Soon After Your Period Should You Take An Ovulation Test Probably Later Than You Thought
Whatâs one of the most important parts of trying to conceive ? Ovulation, of course, since thatâs when your egg drops and is ready for those little swimmers. Fertile windows, cycles, and ovulation days can be confusing though, and Ovulation Predictor Kits are helpful tools to help you figure out when you need to hit the sack to conceive. But how soon after your period should you take an ovulation test? Does the time of day matter, and at what part of your cycle should you begin testing?
Your cycle begins on the very first day of your period and is measured from that day forward. If you conceive, this is how your doctor will determine how many weeks/months along you are. Seems easy enough, right?
But because I have Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome and the awesome ability to not always ovulate at the same time during my cycle , itâs been recommended to me that I start testing for ovulation the day after my period stops, because I could be ovulating early, and I donât want to risk missing the window.
However, every woman is different when it comes to cycle lengths. The American Pregnancy Association suggested waiting to test until you notice a build-up of âfertile-quality cervical mucus, since tests can get expensive. What is fertile-quality mucus? When it looks and stretches on your fingers like egg whites.
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Your Follicular Phase Is Considered Plastic Compared To Your Luteal Phase
That means it can commonly change in length, from cycle-to-cycle. If you know the length of your typical luteal phase you can count backwards to get an idea of when you ovulated. Changes in the length of your cycle are usually pinpointed in the follicular phaseâthe time it takes a follicle to reach the point of ovulation.
Itâs common not to ovulate on a regular basis when you first start menstruating. Itâs also common to have irregular ovulation just after pregnancy and breastfeeding, and during the years approachingmenopause.