Unfortunately, there are several issues that can arise when trying to conceive, and problems with ovulation are common interruptions that many couples deal with. Nonetheless, staying informed about the risks and how to prevent them will help you connect with your body and prepare for the future--even before you pursue more serious fertility procedures.
If you're curious about your reproductive health and ovulatory status, then here are a few things to examine to see if you're ovulating correctly:
What is Ovulation?
Ovulation is the female reproductive process of releasing a mature egg from the ovaries and transferring it to the fallopian tubes for insemination. Generally, one egg is released every month, two weeks after menstruation begins.
The reason why ovulation is so critical to the success of a pregnancy is because timing sexual intercourse with the release of a mature egg will ensure the best chances of reproduction.
The signs of ovulation are sometimes subtle and vary for all women. If you're ovulating, you may notice a difference in your vaginal discharge, an increased resting pulse rate, or breast/nipple tenderness. You might also have spotting or an increased sex drive.
But often times, you don't know the difference between when you're ovulating normally or struggling with "annovulation."
Typically, couples who haven't been able to conceive within a period of 6 months may be experiencing some underlying fertility challenges, and ovulation issues are high on the list of potential culprits.
Ovulation Issues You Might Be Facing
One of the most difficult ovulation challenges that women face is when the body no longer releases an egg during menstruation. This issue is referred to as anovulation, and it is often triggered by hormonal imbalances throughout the body.
Most commonly found in young women just beginning their menstrual cycles or older women in the early stages of menopause, anovulation can occur without any immediate reactions. In fact, women can resume normal bleeding patterns without releasing an oocyte, which results in a struggle of unsuccessful pregnancy attempts.
Although there are instances where women may not notice their limitation, some risk factors to be aware of that contribute to anovulation are closely associated with lifestyle choices.
These lifestyle risk factors include:
- Intense stress levels
- Being underweight
- Poor diet
- Extreme workout routines
Each one plays an important role in regulating progesterone levels throughout the body, as well as ensuring that reproductive functions are working properly. In some cases, other physical symptoms can arise that may also represent anovulation.
Some physical symptoms to look out for include:
- Absence of a period
- Irregular or erratic periods
- Heavy bleeding during menstruation
As a rule of thumb, normal ovulation cycles take place within a range of 24 to 35 days, so if your periods fall between this timeframe, it's a good sign of healthy activity. On the other hand, if you notice any complications, testing your ovulation status at home is easy to do and can encourage you to seek assistance if need be.
How to Test Ovulation at Home
Before jumping to any conclusions, there are several ways you can test your ovulation at home with minimal effort and accurate results. Listed below are a few accessible options to explore, and after you're finished, you can use the information to decide your next steps to getting pregnant.
Ovulation tests to try at home:
- Body Basal Thermometer: Are used to track your body temperature for several months. After ovulation, it should noticeably increase.
- Ovulation Kit: These can be purchased over-the-counter and detect surges in hormones that spike during ovulation.
- Fertility Monitors: An all-inclusive device that monitors monthly cycles, hormone levels, body temperature, and electrolyte levels. Can be purchased in-store or online.
Although it may require a bit of patience, conducting these tests will allow you to understand what you're up against when it comes to fertility. However, if you ever feel like you've come to a standstill, consulting with a fertility specialist about your issues can be a tremendous help.
Improve Your Ovulation with Kofinas Fertility Group
Running into pregnancy challenges is never something easy to overcome, but thankfully, we can provide you with expert advice that will improve your chances of getting pregnant.
Whether you're just beginning to take notice of your cycles or you're searching for ways to enhance them, taking the time to share your experiences with industry professionals will bring you even closer to the family of your dreams.
If you believe you may not be ovulating correctly, we can help. Let's talk.