how to know when you ovulate

We all know that in order to get pregnant sperm and egg have to get together at the right time. The “right time” if you are trying to get pregnant without infertility treatment is during ovulation—when a woman’s egg is released from the ovary and traveling down the fallopian tubes. But how do you know when you ovulate?

Ovulation typically happens around Day 14 or 15 of a menstrual cycle, but this is not true for all women because each woman’s cycles is different. Ovulation usually happens 14 days before you start your period, so how many days into your menstrual cycle you ovulate depends on the length of your menstrual cycle. For example, if you have a 28 day cycle, you will usually ovulate on Day 14. If you have a 34 day cycle, you will usually ovulate on Day 20.

Many woman feel more comfortable relying on over-the-counter ovulation predictor kits (OPKs) to tell them when they ovulate, but long before OPKs were invented, women knew the signs of when they were ovulating, and thus when they needed to have intercourse if they wanted to conceive. You can follow their lead and start looking for these signs.

5 Signs To Know When You Ovulate

  1. Change in vaginal moisture. As a woman progresses through her menstrual cycle, her vaginal discharge (cervical mucus) changes. During the time of ovulation more mucus is present, it is clear in color, and looks somewhat like egg whites. It also has the ability to stretch an inch or so between your fingers without breaking.

physical signs of ovulation

  1. Feeling more “in the mood”. Many women feel more like having sex around the time that they ovulate, due to a cyclical increase in testosterone. Of course, this increased libido can easily be overridden by stress, work schedules, general busyness, or relationship troubles.
  2. Feeling of abdominal fullness. Some women say that they have a full feeling in their lower abdomen, sometime accompanied by a mild cramping feeling.
  3. Ovulation pain. Some women report a pinching or slight cramping feeling when the egg is released from the ovary. Others describe it as a feeling of pressure. Not all women experience this sensation.
  4. Breast Tenderness. Some women experience greater breast sensitivity or tenderness around the time they ovulate.
Source: Creating a Family Radio Show with Dr. Andy Toledo on How to Get Pregnant When It’s Not Happening Fast
Image credit: Cervical mucus- Marquette University