Starting from puberty and ending with menopause, every month each woman experiences three stages of her cycle. One of them is ovulation that is directly associated with the ability to become pregnant. Let’s unveil the details about its proceeding, symptoms that may occur and special tracking techniques.
What is Ovulation?
The menstrual cycle is a natural navigator through a possible pregnancy. It is usually divided into three stages. The first one, the follicular phase, is used to grow and prepare an egg. Then goes ovulation that is aimed at the egg’s realize and movement toward the sperm. At last, the luteal phase starts finishes the cycle or starts the pregnancy.
- The ovulation is characterized by the following changes:
- the body produces the highest estrogen concentrations;
- the ovaries answer with the egg release;
- it travels into the fallopian tubes toward the uterus;
- the latter gets thick and ready for implantation.
If there happens to be sperm, then fertilization occurs and the egg implants for further development of the fetus. If not, the concentration of hormones drops and menses start in 10-14 days. This is how the body begins the new cycle.
Signs Ovulation is Over
Ovulation is a process that lasts nearly one week. As this part of the period is related to fertilization, you may want to know when it finishes. After that, the chances of getting pregnant are low, so you may be more confident in your sexual behavior. Thus, watch out for the following signs.
The consistency and appearance of the cervical music as well as its physical and chemical characteristics change throughout the cycle:
- at the start, it is a bit thicker and acidic and prevents sperm from coming too far inside;
- during ovulation, it looks like the egg white, is more watery and alkaline in nature to support sperm on its way through the uterus;
- after the fertile period is over, mucus becomes thicker and creamy white.
If you measure your basal body temperature every day, then you may follow its changes to determine the ovulation point. During this time, it’ll become a bit higher than usual and these numbers will stay for a few days.
When the pregnancy occurs, the temperature stays higher than usual. If no, it returns to its average value. The latter is between 97 °F (36.1 °C) and 97.5 °F (36.4 °C). Right after ovulation, it is from 97.6 °F (36.4 °C) to 98.6 °F (37 °C).
While the egg is moving on through the fallopian tubes, some women experience back or bottom pain and similar unpleasant sensations. This symptom is quite rare and may occur when there is inflammation or other disturbing issue.
Mood changes follow all the stages of the cycle. While estrogen is increasing, the mood becomes better and the sex drive also rises. This happens through the first part of the cycle and gets to the peak during the ovulation. Later, when hormones start to drop, this may lead to a swing in another direction with the lowest mood right before the start of a new cycle and menses.
A physiological indicator that helps to identify ovulation is luteinizing hormone or LH for short. Its concentration rises abruptly a day before the release of an egg. This may be followed via a special urine test. Then, estrogen and progesterone also start to grow in concentrations.
Keep in mind that during pregnancy LH levels stay high and increase a lot right after the implantation of an egg.
Less Common Signs
In addition, women can pay attention to the following not very common signs of egg release.
During this time, breasts may become tenderer and nipples are sometimes sore. It may also seem that the breasts become a bit bigger. This happens due to higher estrogen concentration and usually disappears in a few days.
The skin on the face becomes a bit oilier than usual. This may lead to pimples and overall worsening of its appearance. This is also the result of hormonal changes.
How to Track Ovulation
No matter what is your aim – to become pregnant or to avoid this – you may utilize several ways to track ovulation. Remember that this process lasts up to 6 days. Fertilization is possible throughout this period.
Ovulation predictor kits
Such kits usually contain a simple urine test. It is similar to pregnancy tests and reacts to the LH level. The latter abruptly rises just before the ovulation so it may be challenging to follow its concentration.
Cervical mucus monitoring
If you are attentive to your cervical mucus, then you’ll be able to see the difference during ovulation. For this, you should monitor its appearance starting from the very beginning of the period. At first, it’ll be thick and white and then become watery and discolored. This is a sign of an egg release.
This tool exists online and helps to calculate the fertility window. To use it, you should remember the date when the period started and know the duration of your cycle. The more precise you are, the better the calculation.
You can find such a free tool on the web, enter the required data and get a quick result.
Fertility tracking apps
If you would like to track your cycle and be aware of what is happening all the time, download one of the special tracking apps. Here you’ll need to indicate the start of each period. All the other calculations are made automatically. The app follows the duration of your cycle and predicts ovulation for each month based on the previous one.
If you combine these data with your feelings and symptoms described above, there are high chances to determine the fertility window and ovulation time correctly.
What Happens After Ovulation?
There are two main scenarios for a woman:
- if fertilization happens, an egg is implanted and this is the start of the pregnancy;
- if no, the level of hormones decreases and this leads to the beginning of a new period.
How to Stimulate Ovulation?
If you wish to put your body toward ovulation, there are medications designed for this purpose. Thus, Clomid is an oral dosage form for women. It blocks estrogen receptors and the body decides that there is not enough estrogen in the blood. This stimulates the production of follicle-stimulating hormone that activate follicles and make the egg grow faster.
In addition, a healthy diet full of vitamins E and C and a balanced lifestyle also contributes to the proper work of the cycle.
One can utilize this knowledge either to become pregnant or to avoid this. On average, an ovulation window lasts nearly a week and this is the period with the highest chances for fertilization. Therefore, watch out for the reactions of your body or use some of the tracking techniques to navigate through your cycle.
How do I know ovulation is over?
When this stage of the cycle ends, the cervix becomes lower and harder, your activity and sex drive may lower and the basal body temperature will also decrease.
What does the end of ovulation feel like?
There may be no special feelings, but cervical mucus becomes thicker, there should be no pain in the bottom or breasts and the mood may become a bit darker.
What does most probable ovulation date mean?
This is the period of the cycle when the chances are the highest. It is usually somewhere in the middle but it is hard to predict the exact date.
How long should there be between ovulation and period?
On average, ovulation happens in the middle of the cycle. If this is the 14th day, then menses should start in two weeks. Thus, this stage divides the whole cycle in two.