When you are planning to have a baby, it is important to mark your fertile period in order to conceive successfully. This fertile period is when you are ovulating. By narrowing down your fertile period, you can increase sexual activity during this period and your chance of conception increases as well.
Most women think that they can get pregnant any time they have sex, but that is not the case. In a month, there are only 5 to 7 days when a woman can conceive. For pregnancy to happen, ovulation must occur wherein your ovaries release a mature egg and it travels through the fallopian tubes. If the egg is fertilised by the sperm, pregnancy occurs but if there is no egg present when you have sexual intercourse, fertilisation cannot occur.
The mature egg dies within 12 to 24 hours of being released, if not fertilised by sperm, which is why having sexual intercourse at the correct time is very important for conception. The sperm can live up to 5 days in a woman’s body.
The first day of your menstrual cycle is when you get your period. For a woman with a cycle of 28-days on an average, ovulation would usually occur on day 14. So if ovulation occurs on the 14th day, you have time till 15th to conceive. But since the sperm can live up to 5 days in the woman’s body, your fertile window would be from day 11 to day 15. Thus, you can get a general idea of your fertile window.
Ovulation doesn’t necessarily occur on the same day each month, thus there is no point by marking a date in the calendar. You would have to calculate it using different techniques such as charting your basal body temperature, observing changes in the cervical mucus and calculating ovulation by the date of your first period.
You would also notice some changes in your body when you’re about to ovulate or are currently ovulating such as increased sex drive or a mild pain in the abdomen. The cervical mucus has a thick, egg-white like, sticky consistency when you are ovulating and your basal body temperature would also rise slightly when ovulation is about to occur. Observing these changes can help you identify your most fertile period so that you can time sexual activity and maximise your chances of getting pregnant. If you’re not able to determine this, you can also use ovulation predictor kits but these may not be completely reliable.