If you’re looking to get pregnant then step #1 needs to be making sure you’re ovulating.
Wait…what??? I might not be ovulating?
Well, it’s possible. Anovulation (not ovulating) is far more common than most of us realize. It’s possible for a woman to have irregular or no ovulation even if she is having periods. For other women, they may lose their periods all together because of anovulation.
How common is it to not ovulate?
Well, it’s pretty normal for all women to have at least a few anovulatory cycles throughout their reproductive years. However, for some women anovulatory cycles are the norm. This is the point where you need to be concerned.
It’s estimated that 30% of infertility is caused by anovulation. And the older you get the bigger the chance of not ovulating. In fact, around 37% of perimenopausal women who are still having their periods aren’t ovulating regularly. So basically, this is something you want to pay attention to.
How do you know if you’re ovulating or not?
The clearest sign that you’re not ovulating is no period. But, just because you’re getting your period doesn’t always mean you are ovulating for sure. If you have any of these signs you may want to do a little more digging to figure out if you are actually ovulating or not…
- Irregular or missed periods
- Short cycles
- Long cycles
- Signs or symptoms of PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome)
If you think you’re having trouble ovulating, you can start charting your cycles to find out for sure. Charting can also give you information as to what hormones are out of balance and how you can step up your ovulation game.
How to chart your cycle
The cheapest and easiest way to understand your cycle is to track your basal temperature or your cervical mucus. If you’re willing to spend a little more money and want to eliminate the guesswork, you can use ovulation predictors.
Tracking your basal temperature
Basal thermometers are inexpensive and available at your local drug store. Or, you can CLICK HERE to get our recommended thermometer delivered right to your door.
When tracking your temp you’re not looking for any particular temperature. You’re looking for a slight increase in temp (about 0.4 degrees) that lasts around three days. This indicates ovulation. Typically your temp will stay fairly consistent the rest of the month.
Tracking your cervical mucus
Tracking cervical mucus takes a little more work and requires you to get comfy with your body. But let’s face it, we should all be comfy with what’s going on down there anyway! =) So get ready, cause we’re about to get real personal for a second.
Your cervical mucus changes throughout your cycle as your hormones change. Initially, right after your period, you will have 3-4 dry days where you have little to no discharge. After this, the cervical mucus will change to a thicker, creamy white discharge. This lasts about a week, until you get close to ovulation. Once you approach ovulation you’ll notice the discharge begins to dilute, but remains non-transparent right up until ovulation. Once ovulation starts, the discharge will become clear, like egg whites. This should last about 3 days before going back to the same consistency as it was prior to ovulation.
Are you overwhelmed yet? We get it…tracking your cycle can be a bit tricky at first. So, we’re gonna help you out a bit by giving you our FREE Tracking Guide and Chart. It gives you all the nitty gritty on how to get tracking your cycle (either with basal temperature or cervical mucus) and includes a handy danding chart you can use for tracking. You’re welcome!! =)
Tracking with ovulation predictors
Luteinizing hormone (LH) is the hormone that tells your ovaries to release an egg. So, when your LH level rises over a certain threshold you should ovulate within 12-36 hours. This is where ovulation predictors come in. They work much like a pregnancy test, in that you’re peeing on a stick, but these tests are measuring your LH level instead of HSG. A good ovulation prediction kit will give you high fertility as well as peak fertility days so you can make sure you’re getting busy at the right time. *wink,wink*
There are a million different ovulation predictor kits out there and you can pick one up from any local drug or grocery store. CLICK HERE for our go to kit. It’s a little pricier than some, but it’s super easy to use and fairly failproof.
What if you’re not ovulating?
Like I mentioned earlier, it’s not that uncommon for women to not ovulate. Again, roughly 30% of infertility is a result of anovulation. In most cases, anovulation results from a hormone imbalance. The good news is that hormone imbalances can typically be corrected through diet and lifestyle changes. If you’re not ovulating and need help you can schedule your FREE Fertile Method Consult to see if The Fertile Method and our 3-R System is the right fit for you.