Throughout your adult life, you probably spent a lot of time avoiding pregnancy, but now you want it conception seems to be taking longer than you thought. Today let’s discuss different ways in which women can actively predict their ovulation and thus understand their fertility, whilst also considering the possible circumstances in which an ovulation predictor won’t work as well.
Predicting your ovulation may seem, at first, both complex and confusing; what are all the different hormones you need to analyse and what does “basal body temperature” even mean? But starting slowly with simply charting your menstrual cycle is a great way to begin. The days in which a woman is most likely to be fertile and ovulate is around day 14 of a typical cycle. Utilising apps on smart phones or merely a paper calendar can help keep track of the different days. Other alternatives include measuring the, as stated before “basal body temperature” whereby a certain thermometer is necessary as well as specific circumstances or looking at the consistency of cervix mucus. Some women even claim to feel a twinge of pain around their ovulation, but many don’t feel any kind of sensation.
A great alternative that skips the levels of doubt that many of these methods invoke, is that of ovulation predictors. A common form is that of an ovulation predictor kit (OPKs) that measures the surge of Luteinizing Hormone (LH) that occurs before ovulation. Despite being easy to use and accessible over-the-counter, OPKs are often expensive and provide inconsistent results for women around the age of 40 and over. Women approaching their menopause have high levels of LH in their body at all times and so solidify the tests as invalid. Unfortunately, OPKs also do not work reliably when there are particular fertility drugs in the body such as Pergonal.
To overcome these problems, there is the option of fertility monitors that use advanced technology to measure the ‘basal body temperature’. While similar to an OPK in that it allows you to look at the pattern of hormone levels and give you fair warning as to when ovulation will occur, these monitors analyse Progesterone instead, meaning it is accessible to any women with ovulatory problems, such as women with the condition Polycystic Ovary Syndrome, Overall, Ovulation Predictors work reliably with relatively high levels of accuracy, but to guarantee the most precise predictions, it is suggested to use a variety of methods at the same time.