Couples trying to conceive want to make sure they thoroughly understand the role ovulation plays in the conception—it is important that you recognize the ovulation symptoms in order to increase the likelihood of getting pregnant.
Ovulation is what occurs when a woman’s body releases an egg from the ovarian follicle. A healthy, mature egg has a higher chance of becoming fertilized by your partner’s sperm. However, there is a certain window of time that the egg has before it is no longer capable of becoming fertilized, which is between 12 and 24 hours.
Because there is such a short window of time for the sperm to make contact with the egg, you should pay extremely close attention to the signs that ovulation is about to occur. Women should especially look for the following, which are ovulation symptoms:
Higher Sex Drive: In the days before ovulation, most women notice that their sex drive is much higher than usual, which is ideal since this is a good time to engage in sexual intercourse.
Tenderness of the Breasts: Many women experience tenderness of their breasts before or after ovulation, which occurs due to the stimulation of the body’s hormonal levels, especially progesterone.
Change in Cervical Mucus: The appearance of a woman’s cervical mucus is among one of the most accurate ovulation symptoms the body produces. During ovulation, the mucus becomes watery or similar to a raw egg white and appears in larger amounts. When not ovulating, the mucus may not be produced at all or typically appears in a creamy or sticky form.
Not only is it important to recognize when ovulation is happening, sexual intercourse must be attempted at the right time. The best time to have intercourse in the effort to get pregnant is before a woman begins ovulating—not after. The reason for this is that sperm has the ability to survive for 2-3 days, which gives it plenty of time to wait until the egg is produced and then fertilize it. Waiting until after ovulation does not work because the egg disintegrates after 12-24 hours.
Aside from recognizing ovulation symptoms, there are a number of things a woman can do to make sure her body is in the perfect condition to receive sperm and produce a fertilized egg.
Iva Keene is co-founder, creator and award-winning author of the NFP Program and director of Natural-Fertility-Prescription.com. She holds a Bachelor Degree in Health Science in Naturopathy and a Master Degree in Reproductive Medicine. She has been a qualified and internationally accredited Naturopathic Physician for over 15 years. Since founding NFP in 2008, Iva’s articles, videos, guides, and reports have reached over 1.3 million people. Iva has dedicated her professional life to supporting couples on their path to parenthood with scientifically grounded information, protocols, and coaching around preconception care, natural infertility treatments, and integrative reproductive health.