If your menstrual cycle lasts 28 days and your period arrives like clockwork, it’s likely that you‘ll ovulate on day 14. That’s halfway through your cycle.
Your fertile window begins on day 10. You‘re more likely to get pregnant if you have sex at least every other day between days 10 and 14 of a 28-day cycle.
If you need to know the ovulation symptoms to look out for determining if you are fertile, you may get dismayed by finding out that many signs are not that obvious. In contrast to other animals, the vulvas of women do not swell up, they are not on heat and they also do not emit fragrances to attract men.
When you want to have sex to become pregnant, it is essential to know when ovulation will occur and how many days you will remain fertile.
Fortunately, there are ovulation symptoms and if you spot them, you can engage in sexual intercourse on the days when you are fertile.
These signs will be different in each woman, but you can track your cycle properly to know what is normal for you.
What Causes Ovulation in Your Body?
The release of the egg from the ovarian follicle is known as ovulation. As the egg is released, it passes through the fallopian tubes towards the uterus. If it gets fertilized by a sperm during this journey, you can get pregnant.
About twenty percent of females can experience some pain during ovulation. However, this pain does not occur at the exact moment of ovulation. Physical signs occur as your body is preparing to ovulate and others occur after ovulation.
When you are trying conceive, the vital symptoms to look out for are those that occur when your body is getting ready to ovulate.
Do Women Ovulate Every Month?
Generally, in the normal 28 day menstrual cycle, ovulation takes place on the 14th day. However, this does not occur in every woman because all women are not the same. They do not all ovulate on day 14.
Some women will have a 30 day cycle or a 21 day cycle and you should be able to know your cycle well. Ovulation will occur at the end of complex hormonal events which start in the last cycle before even your periods begin.
Therefore, you should not just assume that you will ovulate on day 14.
Estrogen is the important hormone that is necessary for ovulation to take place. At the start of your periods, the levels of estrogen are low.
Estrogen rises during the cycle eventually reaching a point where it triggers the production of luteinizing hormone that sends a message to the ovaries to release the egg.
Symptoms of ovulation are largely related to increasing levels of estrogen.
Some women do not ovulate each month. If your ovaries fail to produce a follicle that is mature, ovulation will not occur.
In such a cycle, the endometrium develops normally, but an egg is not released. Some women can release 2 or more ova within a period of 24 hours. It is possible to release more ova after this period because of hormonal changes.
After an egg becomes fertilized, hormones prevent the release of any other egg in order to nurture and protect the pregnancy.
Phases of ovulation
The phases of ovulation include:
Menstrual phase – This the phase when you have your period. The initial day of your menses is a visual marker that you and your doctor or other healthcare professional can use to distinguish both the start and end of your ovulation cycle. This phase usually lasts 4 to 7 days.
Follicular phase – This phase account for the initial 1st half of the menstrual cycle. It begins on the 1st day of your period and continues for 10 to 17 days.
Under the control of a number of hormones, the brain sends hormonal signal that the follicle stimulating hormone to your ovaries to stimulate a number of follicles to mature each month.
A dominant follicle then releases a mature egg at the time of ovulation.
Ovulatory phase – Everything that occurs during the follicle phase prepares the body for a series of hormonal events that result in ovulation.
Ovulation takes place mid cycle in response to some hormonal changes set off by increased estrogen levels occur on any day from the 10th to the 17th day of the follicular phase.
The peak in estrogen triggers a short surge in Lutenizing Hormone, which then triggers ovulation within 24 hours or up to 48 hours.
Luteal Phase – This phase of the ovulation cycle usually lasts about 14 days. During the Lutealphase, the level of estrogen, which are dominant during the Follicular phase decline and the levels of progesterone increase.
The role of estrogen was to fertile and enhance the growth of the lining of the uterus. Now the role of progesterone is to maintain the uterine lining so that a fertilized egg can implant itself to the uterus.
Which are your fertile days?
A woman is fertile on the 5 days prior to ovulation and on the day of ovulating. The peak of fertility occurs two days before ovulation. You are more likely to conceive on these 2 days than on the day of ovulating.
Common Signs of Ovulation
Higher resting pulse rate – Study data shows that the resting pulse rate starts to increase some days before ovulating.
The resting pulse rate is low when you are menstruating and it increases when you are ovulating.
After ovulation, it continues to rise. It will drop when menstruation starts. If you get pregnant, the pulse rate will remain high.
Drop in basal body temperature – Some females notice their body temperature has reached a low point during ovulation.
After ovulating, the basal body temperature raises due to increased progesterone levels.
Therefore, this is not a good way of determining the precise day of ovulation because you are not in a good position of knowing when the body temperature went down.
According to studies, body temperature will change two days before the day of ovulation.
Vaginal Discharge – A few daysprior to ovulation, the levels of estrogen increases, resulting in a change in the consistency of the cervical mucus.
When you are almost ovulating, the cervical mucus becomes slippery. To check the kind of discharge you have, insert a clean finger into your vagina.
Test it between the thumb and middle finger. If the discharge is sticky then you are almost ovulating. Cervical mucus shows that your body is preparing for ovulation.
Nipple or Breast soreness – Soreness of the breast or nipples occurs a few days before ovulation and the days after ovulation because of an increase in hormone levels. It can also be a sign of early pregnancy.
Pain in the pelvic area – Some women will experience pain in the pelvic area during ovulation. However, this pain does not usually occur precisely at the time of ovulation and should not be termed as a definitive ovulation sign.
A number of women will know when they are ovulating because of this mild pain on the pelvis. This sensation is known as mittelschmerz.
Spotting – Some women experience some spotting at ovulation time. Estrogen levels rise in the initial phase of the cycle causing the uterus lining grows.
Spotting at ovulation time may be due to the uterine lining growing because of high estrogen levels. Spotting should not be of concern unless it persists.
Increase in sex drive – Women may feel to be more in the mood of having sex on the days leading to ovulation because of the increase of their estrogen levels.
Cervical position changes – The cervix is a big part of the reproductive system of females and plays major roles.
One may be able to know when they are approaching ovulation due to the changes the cervix goes through.
The cervix opening, position and texture change when you are fertile. The changes can be noticed by feeling the cervix. These changes are different for instance during the fertile phase, the cervix changes feeling soft and it is open (the ‘show state’).
After the fertile phase, it will go back to its original state of being hard (like the tip of your nose) closed and lower in the vagina. When the cervix is in the show state, a woman is very fertile.
Changes in taste and smell – A change in hormone levels in a woman may influence heightened senses. The senses of taste, vision, or smell may change around the time a woman is ovulating.
Ovulation pain – There are a number of women who experience some pain during ovulation. They feel the pain on the lower abdomen on the side that the ovary is releasing an ovum.
The pain can sometimes be like cramps, but will not last for a very long time.
Abdominal bloating – Slight bloating can also occur when you are ovulating. This symptom can occur because of increased water retention caused by higher levels of estrogen.
Nausea, headaches or migraines – There are a number of women who will experience nausea or headaches. Some also suffer from migraines because of hormonal changes in the body.
These changes can make one become nauseous.
Cervical mucus changes – As women near ovulation, the body produces more estrogen. The cervical mucus becomes clear and stretchy like egg white which helps sperms swim to the egg.
The amount of cervical mucus will vary from woman to woman. When you are ovulating, the discharge is stretchy and sticky or slippery and this shows that you are in the fertile phase.
Night sweats – During ovulation and menstruation, hormone levels in the blood stream change. The changing levels of estrogen and progesterone are responsible for night sweats.
Hot flashes – You can also experience hot flashes due to changes in hormone levels in the blood stream.
Dizzy spells – This is a common symptom and it occurs during the second half of the menstrual cycle after the ovary releases an egg.
Lower abdominal pain – You can experience lower abdominal pain, just inside your hip bone. This pain can begin two weeks before your menstrual period is due. You can feel it on the right or left side, depending on the ovary that is releasing the ovum.
Cramping – About 50 percent of women experience cramping during ovulation. Some experience sharp pain on one side of their abdomen, which lasts for very brief period while others may experience a dull ache or mild cramping which lasts for several hours to several days.
Back pain – You can experience lower back pain at about the middle of your menstrual cycle due to ovulation. The pain is not severe and when you notice it, it can be sign that you are ovulating.
Increased body temperature – The normal ovulating body temperature of women is between 96 an 99 degrees F. After an egg if released, the basal body temperature increases by about half a degree in all women.
The progesterone hormone which the ovaries secrete after ovulation is responsible for this rise in temperature.
Changing hormones – The levels of progesterone and estrogen fluctuate and are responsible for many of the signs of ovulation.
Getting to know when you are fertile from the ovulation signs increases the chances of a woman becoming pregnant quickly.
With a keen follow up of the signs and pattern of your cycle, you can know exactly when you are ovulating.
The most appropriate time to have sexual intercourse is two days before ovulation day.
Generally, the women who utilize ovulation calculators conceive in fifty eight days which is fast when compared to the USA national average, which is a hundred and eighty days.