How To Know When Youre Ovulating
Knowing when you ovulate can help you plan for sex at the right time and improve your chance of getting pregnant. You can keep track of your menstrual cycles on a chart, in a diary, or on a free period-tracker app on your smartphone.
To work out the length of your menstrual cycle, record the first day you start bleeding . This is day 1. The last day of your cycle is the day before your next period begins.
Some people think the menstrual cycle and a period are the same thing.
A period is when you bleed .
A menstrual cycle starts on the day when a period starts and ends the day before the next period. A cycles length is considered normal if its between 21 and 35 days. They can vary between women and from one cycle to the next.
- Working out your average menstrual cycle length
If your menstrual cycles are different lengths you can work out your average cycle length.
The number of days in a womans menstrual cycle can vary month to month. Periods are not always regular. It can be useful to work out an average cycle length, based on the length of three menstrual cycles, to estimate when youre most likely to be ovulating.
If you add the number of days in three cycles and divide the total number by three, it gives you your average cycle length.
Sarah tracked her last three menstrual cycles by counting the time from the first day of one period, to the day before the next period.
Cycle 1 was 28 days Cycle 2 was 32 days Cycle 3 was 27 days
28 + 32 + 27 = 87
How Does Conception Occur
The ability to conceive is miraculous. It requires the meeting of a males sperm with a females egg. Once a womans ovary releases an egg, the egg lives for only between 12 and 24 hours. The male sperm can live for about three days.
The typical female cycle is 28 days. Day 1 is when she starts her period. A woman typically ovulates around day 14 .
Ovulation is when a womans ovary releases an egg for fertilization. If a sperm is available in the uterus, pregnancy can occur.
Ovulation can vary based on a womans cycle. Some women have a longer cycle of around 35 days between periods. Ovulation would then happen around day 21. Women with a shorter cycle of 21 days ovulate around day 7.
What Are The Chances A Woman Can Get Pregnant On Her Period
A womans likelihood of getting pregnant can rise and fall throughout her ovulation cycle. While the average females monthly cycle may be 29 days, others may have a cycle that varies from 20 to 40 days, or longer.
The likelihood that a woman will get pregnant one to two days after she starts bleeding is nearly zero. But the likelihood starts to increase again with each successive day, even though shes still bleeding.
At roughly day 13 after starting her period, her chance of pregnancy is an estimated 9 percent.
While these numbers may be low, it doesnt mean a woman can ever be 100 percent assured that she wont get pregnant on her period.
Recommended Reading: Is Breakfast Essentials Good For Pregnancy
Can You Have A Period And Still Be Pregnant
No once pregnancy begins, the uterine lining no longer sheds each month. Once the body starts releasing a hormone called human chorionic gonadotropin, monthly periods will stop. However, some people experience light bleeding after conception, around the same time their period would have started. This is called implantation bleeding.
If youre pregnant and experience bleeding or spotting, contact your health care provider.
Pregnancy can occur even if youre on your period. To avoid pregnancy, it is important to use contraception.
Birth control methods that can prevent pregnancy on your period include:
- Male condom
Tracking Ovulation With Irregular Periods
If you experience irregular menstrual cycles, tracking ovulation could be helpful using several different tools.
If your cycle is irregular, try tracking it on your calendar for a few reasons. You might notice a pattern, and you can share the information from your tracking efforts with your gynecologist or fertility specialist.
Your cervical mucus changes when you ovulate. Cervical mucus is minimal during the first few days after your menstrual cycle. Then, it will start to increase. As you approach ovulation, your cervical mucus will become more plentiful, clear, slippery, and sticky. A lot of people compare its consistency to egg whites.
Don’t Miss: Using Vagisil During Pregnancy
Know When To Seek Help
Both the woman and the man should consider having an infertility evaluation if the woman is 35 or older and has not become pregnant after six months of having sex regularly without using birth control, Pavone said.
Pavone also recommended that a woman who is under 35 and her partner should consult a fertility specialist if she hasn’t become pregnant after one year of having unprotected intercourse on a regular basis.
Myth : Ovulation Occurs 14 Days Before Your Next Period Starts
You may have heard that ovulation will occur 14 days before your next period is due and that this is the best time to get pregnant. But this advice relies on the assumption that the second phase of your menstrual cycle is 14 days long. And again this is NOT always the case.
The luteal phase of the menstrual cycle is the number of days between your day of ovulation and the start of your next period. Were often told that the luteal phase is exactly 14 days long. But in reality it varies in length from woman to woman. A normal luteal phase can be anywhere from 10 to 16 days long.
So if youre doing the maths to figure out when you ovulate, counting back 14 days from your expected next period doesnt always work. If your luteal phase is longer or shorter than 14 days, your calculation is going to be wrong. The easiest way to figure out the length of your luteal phase is by learning fertility awareness and charting your fertility .
Also Check: Can You Donate Plasma While Pregnant
Can You Get Pregnant On The First Day Of Your Period
It’s possible though not very likely for you to get pregnant on the first day of your period, especially if you have a regular, 28-day cycle.
If you have an irregular or a shorter menstrual cycle, however, ovulation might occur much closer to day one of your period, which would cause you to get pregnant on the first day.
Evolution And Other Species
Most female mammals have an estrous cycle, but only ten primate species, four bat species, the elephant shrews and the spiny mouse species Cairo spiny mouse have a menstrual cycle. The cycles are the same as in humans apart from the length, which ranges from 9 to 37 days. The lack of immediate relationship between these groups suggests that four distinct evolutionary events have caused menstruation to arise. In species that have a menstrual cycle, ovulation is not obvious to potential mates and there is no mating season. There are four theories on the evolutionary significance of menstruation:
Recommended Reading: Can You Drink Breakfast Essentials While Pregnant
Strive For A Healthy Body Weight
A woman’s weight can also impact the chances of conceiving: Being overweight or underweight may reduce those odds. Research has shown that a woman who is overweight can take twice as long to become pregnant as a woman whose body-mass index is considered normal weight, Pavone said. A woman who is underweight might take four times as long to conceive, she said.
Having too much body fat produces excessestrogen, which can interfere with ovulation,according to the Cleveland Clinic. A 2017 study suggested that couples in the study in which both partners were very obese, with BMIs of at least 35, took from 55% to 59% longer to become pregnant, compared with couples who were not obese, the researchers reported in the journalHuman Reproduction.
In a study published in 2020 in the journal PLOS One, researchers looked at data from more than 50,000 couples in China trying to conceive over the course of a year they found that women’s ability to conceive within a given timeframe decreased as their BMI increased.
Male obesity, which can disrupt the male endocrine system as well as sperm viability and concentration, can also affect a couple’s ability to become pregnant, scientists reported in 2020 in the journalAndrologia.
Women who are underweight, with a BMI less than 18, might not be getting regular periods or could stop ovulating, which also hinders their ability to become pregnant, according to theUniversity of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics Authority.
How To Prevent Pregnancy
The most effective strategy for avoiding pregnancy is to refrain from sex. Sexually active people who do not wish to become pregnant should use contraceptives such as condoms or birth control.
Using two methods can offer additional protection, for example, when a person uses both hormonal birth control and condoms.
Several fertility monitoring techniques make it easier for a person to pinpoint their fertile window and avoid sex or use contraceptives during this time.
These methods are more effective if a person has regular periods. Some fertility monitoring strategies include:
- Charting basal body temperature: A persons morning body temperature usually rises shortly after ovulation.
- Using ovulation predictors: These tests typically give a positive result a day or two before ovulation, but it is possible to get a positive without ovulation.
- Looking for fertile cervical fluid:Thick cervical fluid with a texture similar to raw egg whites indicates ovulation is approaching.
- Checking cervical position and texture: Some females find that the position and texture of their cervix changes throughout their cycle.
Don’t Miss: Can You Get Lasik While Pregnant
Can A Girl Get Pregnant If She Has Sex During Her Period
Can a girl get pregnant if she has sex during her period? Jamie*
Yes, a girl can get pregnant during her period. This might happen when:
- A girl has bleeding that she thinks is a period, but it’s bleeding from . Ovulation is the monthly release of an egg from a girls ovaries. It is the time when she is most likely to get pregnant if she has sex.
- Ovulation happens before the bleeding from a girl’s period has stopped.
- Ovulation happens within a few days after a girl’s period is over. Sperm can fertilize an egg for 3 days. So if a girl has sex on the last day of her period and ovulates in the next few days, the sperm may still fertilize the egg.
Having unprotected sex at any time is risky. Along with the risk of getting pregnant, you could also get an STD, such as chlamydia, genital warts, or HIV. The only way to completely prevent pregnancy and STDs is abstinence .
If you do have sex, use a condom every time to protect against unplanned pregnancy and STDs. For added protection, many couples use condoms along with another method of birth control, like birth control pills or an IUD. Talk to your doctor about the best type of birth control for you.
*Names have been changed to protect user privacy.
Im Pregnant But Have Some Bleeding Is This My Period
Implantation bleeding sometimes happens pregnant women around the time theto period would have been due. Implantation is when the developing embryo plants itself in the wall of your womb. An implantation bleed is very light bleeding that is usually pinkish and sometimes brown. Not everyone will have an implantation bleed.
Its common to have light bleeding or spotting without pain before 12 weeks. This isnt often serious, but you should contact your doctor, midwife or Early Pregnancy Unit immediately to be checked, just in case.
Don’t Miss: Can You Donate Plasma While Pregnant
Common Signs Of A Successful Fertilization
Here are the common signs and symptoms that you may experience after conception :
- You may notice light spotting or implantation spotting around 6 to 12 days after fertilization.
- The breasts may feel heavier, fuller, or swollen and tender to touch. The areola may also darken.
- There is extreme tiredness due to a change in the progesterone levels.
- The most prominent sign of pregnancy is missing your periods.
- You tend to urinate more frequently than before.
- You may feel nauseated.
- You develop a craving for various foods that include the ones you never liked before.
- Be prepared for mood swings.
Although these signs indicate towards a pregnancy, you can confirm it only through a home pregnancy test.
Periods, ovulation and chances of getting pregnant are no doubt a little confusing, especially due to the various myths associated with them. In the below Q& A section, we make them easier to understand.
How Soon Can I Get Pregnant After Coming Off The Pill
You can get pregnant as soon as you come off the pill but if youre trying to get pregnant, its a good idea to wait until youve had a natural period. This will give your body time to adjust and give you a chance to make sure youre ready for pregnancy. Make use of our pregnancy planning tool to see what else you can do.
Don’t Miss: Is Fatigue An Early Sign Of Pregnancy
Can You Get Pregnant On Your Period While Using Birth Control
It’s possible to get pregnant when you’re using birth control, whether you’re on your period or not.
The likelihood that a contraceptive will fail varies depending on the method of birth control :
- Oral contraceptives : About 7 to 9 percent failure rate
- Progestin-only pill: About 7 percent failure rate
- Patch: About 7 to 9 percent failure rate
- Vaginal contraceptive ring: About 7 to 9 percent failure rate
- Male condoms: About 13 to 18 percent failure rate
- Diaphragms: About 12 to 17 percent failure rate
For what it’s worth, tracking your monthly cycle called “fertility awareness” in order to avoid pregnancy isn’t the most reliable birth control method the typical failure rate may be as high as 23 percent.
The bottom line: Although the odds are slim, you can get pregnant on your period or any other time of the month. It’s even possible to get pregnant on your period if you’re using birth control.
So unless youre trying to conceive, its always smart to be vigilant about contraception unless you like big surprises.
From the What to Expect editorial team and Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect When You’re Expecting. What to Expect follows strict reporting guidelines and uses only credible sources, such as peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions and highly respected health organizations. Learn how we keep our content accurate and up-to-date by reading our medical review and editorial policy.
Is It Easy To Get Pregnant After Your Period
Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!
Ask U.S. doctors your own question and get educational, text answers â it’s anonymous and free!
HealthTap doctors are based in the U.S., board certified, and available by text or video.
Recommended Reading: Can You Take A Tums While Pregnant
What About Period Sex
Weve heard period sex hailed as the ultimate time for unprotected love making. Though baby making odds are slim, its not 100 percent risk-free.
During the 4 to 8 days of bleeding, youre shedding the unfertilized egg from your previous cycle. This means there isnt a new egg ready for baby making, but it doesnt mean your partners sperm wont hang out until the new egg makes its debut.
Factors That Change The Time You Ovulate
The sex hormones estrogen and progesterone largely determine the duration of a menstrual cycle. For example, over the course of a cycle, rising estrogen levels trigger ovulation and thicken the uterine lining so that you can potentially conceive and nurture a fertilized egg.
Slight changes in estrogen and progesterone levels can lead to changes in cycle duration and when you ovulate. These changes can come from factors like age, ethnicity, and body mass index.
Stress, illness, and other medical conditions can also affect when you ovulate, and alter the typical length of your cycle. “Even somebody with a 31-day cycle might have a shorter cycle than their average and have a slip-up,” Childson says.
You May Like: Vagisil When Pregnant
Know The Best Position To Get Pregnant
When it comes to the best position to get pregnant, it can be hard to separate real advice from old wives’ tales. Dr. Williams gives some tips to get pregnant fast.
Lie on your back after sex. “Because the vagina naturally slopes downward, resting on your back after sex allows sperm to pool there, which gives them an edge in swimming toward your egg,” says Dr. Williams. Should you keep your legs elevated, too? It can’t hurt, he says, but it probably doesn’t help any more than lying down does.
Have sex before bed. Though some sources report that sperm count is highest in the morning, the truth is that there’s no optimal time of day to have sex. However, doing so before you hit the hay is an easy way to ensure you stay on your back afterward.
Keep it vanilla. While there’s no single sex position that’s best for baby-making , stick to one where you’ll be on your back when it’s over.