How do I know if I am ovulating?

If I asked 10 women how do you confirm ovulation? I can bet 9 will reply based on the presence of egg white cervical mucus. Most women even conclude they are not ovulating because they used to see the eggwhite cervical mucus before but now they do not.

Did you know the presence of egg-white cervical mucus isn’t always a predictor of ovulation? Confused? You will understand why as we go on in this article.

I’ll start with the primary fertility signs:

1. Cervical Mucus:
There is a usual pattern of cervical mucus that indicates a healthy regular cycle. Of course, it shouldn’t be smelly or with a funny color or cheesy look, that will indicate an infection. Healthy cervical mucus usually starts days after your period. The first one will usually look like gum or paste, then afterwards, it begins to look wet like lotion/creamy, and days after becomes even wetter, watery, slippery, like eggwhite and it stretches and as soon as you ovulate, it becomes dry again. This pattern can be a little different for other women. Some see eggwhite again about a week after ovulation because of the surge of estrogen somewhere around that time, others may see creamy. In order to know what is normal for you, you have to start keeping track.

Image Credit: Fertility Chartin

Because estrogen hormone is responsible for the production of cervical mucus, some women with very high estrogen levels may see fertile quality cervical mucus many times in the cycle. For example, women with PCOS produce fertile quality cervical mucus many times in the cycle because their bodies keep trying to ovulate but is not successful because of the hormonal imbalance. Seeing eegwhite isn't always a predictor of fertility especially in women with hormonal imbalance.

If you are trying to conceive but always get confused when it comes to identifying the cervical mucus, you can get my Ebook- how to get pregnant faster. It teaches how to check, and when to check and even has pictures to help you differentiate the different types whether you choose to check using tissue, your fingers, or by looking at your panties.

2. Position of the cervix: The position of your cervix changes all through the cycle. At the time of your periods, beginning of the cycle, the cervix is low but as you approach ovulation, days before, it starts to move up higher, and around the time of ovulation, it is at its highest. Immediately after ovulation, it comes back down. You may have just learned this for the first time right?

So how do you check? Use your fingers. The knuckle rule. After the vaginal canal is your cervix, how many knuckles go in before you touch the cervix. Just one knuckle, the cervix is low, two, it is mid-way and three, it is at its highest meaning ovulation is just about to happen.

The cervix feels wet and soft at the time of ovulation
more like the tip of your lips and the tiny hole in the middle is also open.

Other times in the cycle, it usually feels dry
, firm like the tip of your nose and is closed.

3. Basal body temperature: This is the third of the primary fertility signs but the most important if you ask me. While these first two fertility signs can tell you ovulation is close, this is the only sign that can tell you for sure that you have indeed ovulated. Your waking temperature is low in the first half of your cycle and immediately after you ovulate, it goes up because of the progesterone hormone. It stays high from after ovulation until the first day of your next period. All you need is a thermometer and an alarm every morning to remind you to check at the same time every day. If you don’t get a sustained raised temperature then you didn’t ovulate. It is that simple. Want to learn more about this, how to check, and how to input results daily to get a chart like this easy to interpret, click here to check out my ebook- How to get pregnant fast.

4. Ovulation Test Strips

Ovulation test strips can be purchased from any pharmacy close to you. It measures the levels of the Lutenising hormone in the urine. It works like the pregnancy test strips. A test line as dark or darker than the control is a positive result and would mean that you are ovulating in the next 12 to 72 hours. This sign tells you you are about to but does not confirm that it actually happened. It is best to pair ovulation test strips with the basal body temperature to confirm ovulation.

5.Follicular Tracking: All the signs mentioned above are inexpensive, very cheap as you can check from the comfort of your home. However, if you need professional help, you can always go into a clinic for an ultrasound. A sonographer will begin monitoring your follicles in the first half of your cycle. The follicle holds the eggs in the ovaries. As they mature, they will begin to grow in size. You will be required to come to the clinic at intervals for monitoring until when it finally ruptures, that is ovulation. A mature follicle ready to release an egg usually measures between 17 to 28mm before ovulation.

6. Progesterone Test: The last is the progesterone done at the middle of the luteal phase, about a week after ovulation. This is when the progesterone hormone peaks. This test is commonly run on the 21st day of the cycle. The clinic may ask you to come back on the 21st day of your cycle. It can be close to accurate for women with 28 day cycle length because day 21 will be about a week from when they ovulated. For those with significantly longer cycles, you might be testing too early on day 21 of your cycle and as such results will be inaccurate. You are ovulating much later than day 14, so day 21 isn't up to a week after you ovulated. 

It all comes back to proper cycle tracking. When you track your temperatures, you will know the exact day of ovulation and you can count a week from then. 

These are the different ways you can confirm if you are ovulating. You can check 5 signs that shows a woman is not ovulating if you have concerns that you may not be ovulating.

Would like to speak to me about your irregular periods or want me to review your test results, recommend supplements, diet and healthy lifestyle changes to help you get pregnant fast? Click here to book a consultation call. 


Stephanie Nyong- Certified Women's Holistic Hormone Health Practitioner and Member, Int'l Practitioners of Holistic Medicine, United Kingdom. 

Would you like to learn how to chart your fertility signs correctly in order to track ovulation and time sex right? Get my short E-book 'How to get pregnant faster'

About Stephanie Nyong

Stephanie is an internationally certified women's holistic hormone health practitioner and a member of the International Practitioners of Holistic Medicine, United Kingdom. She is very passionate about teaching women to master their unique menstrual cycle patterns and use their hormones to the their advantage (either for natural conception or birth control and to monitor their reproductive health)   She is a serial author and also the founder of Women's Health Platforms Foundation,  an NGO clinic in Abuja, Nigeria that has provided over 5,000 women with low-cost preventive healthcare services. 

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