How To Calculate My Fertile Days
The menstrual cycle starts from the first day of your period. A cycle commonly lasts between 28 and 30 days in regular women. Fertile days begin in the middle of this cycle, the time when ovulation occurs and our body prepares to receive sperm and to become pregnant. Whether you are looking to become a mother or want to prevent an unwanted pregnancy, it is important to know at what time of the month you are ovulating, So in OneHowTo.com we'd like to explain how to calculate your fertile days and understand the menstrual cycle.
Regular and irregular menstrual cycle
It is considered that a woman has a regular menstrual cycle when she menstruates every 28 to 30 days, give or take a day. To find out if you are regular it is very important to track this on a calendar or schedule the day you should start menstruating. If you find that, when reviewing the last four menstrual cycles, they come at intervals of 27, 28, 30 or even 31 days, then you are regular. For these women calculating fertile days is simple.
Although they say that most women have cycles between 28 and 30 days, if your period comes between 21 and 35 days with appropriate margins to give or take a day (for example a period comes after 21 days, the next at 23 and then 24) then you are still considered to have a normal cycle.
However, if for any reason (such as polycystic ovaries or hormonal disorders) your period always comes with different frequencies or not at all, you have an irregular menstrual cycle. In this case it is essential that you go to a gynecologist to look into why your periods are not regular and to find out how to calculate your fertile days.
Changes in our body when we ovulate
When we ovulate our body changes, and one of the clearest signs of this is the state of our vaginal discharge. During the fertile days our flow becomes more abundant and sticky, with an appearance similar to that of an egg white. Its colour is white and thick and if you manipulate it you will notice that this is a very flexible cervical mucus. The presence of this fluid clearly indicates that we are ovulating or that it is the day before ovulation and that our body is prepared to receive sperm and move it towards the egg.
Other bodily changes during ovulation can include pricking sensations in the lower abdomen and breast tenderness. It is also common to feel increased sexual desire during these days due to the generation of hormones.
For irregular women learning to detect these changes is essential if wanting to determine which are the most fertile days in their cycle.
Calculating the fertile days if I am regular (cycle of 28 to 30 days)
If your menstrual cycle is regular and always occurs between 28 and 30 days, to calculate your fertile days you only have to count 14 days from the first day of your period.
For example, if your period starts on the 16th the calculation would be:
16 + 14 = 30. It is likely that you will ovulate on the 30th of that month.
Once the egg is released, it will only be alive in the body for 24 to 48 hours, while sperm can stay alive for up to 72 hours. Therefore, if you are not trying for a baby it is important to use condoms between day 11 and 16 of your menstrual cycle. This way you will avoid an unwanted pregnancy.
Calculating the fertile days if I have a cycle of 21 to 35 days
Women with a menstrual cycle between 21 and 35 days are considered normal but without perfect cycles. Here another calculation is required to know which will be the dates when she ovulates. It is always important to keep track of the first day of our past period to make this calculation.
Here, 14 days must be subtracted from the first day of the period to determine the next possible day of ovulation. Take the same example as above, a woman whose period is on the 16th the calculation would be:
16 - 14 = 2. It is possible that day 2 of the following month will be amongst the fertile days.
Calculating the fertile days if I am irregular
In the case of irregular women such calculations are impossible because their periods do not come with a frequency that allows predictions.
Here attention to the symptoms of ovulation is key because there is no other mechanism to know when you are amongst fertile days. Observe vaginal discharge, determine when it changed and whether its appearance is like that mentioned in paragraph 2. Also check for pain in the lower abdomen or breast tenderness, this is very important to know when a pregnancy could occur.
If you are not trying to for a baby but you are irregular, it is essential that you use a contraceptive method to prevent accidents and unwanted pregnancies.
When in doubt
These are ways of calculating fertile days according to the menstrual cycle, but it's worth reminding that if you are taking hormonal contraceptives and don't do it right, your body will not ovulate and it will therefore be impossible to count your fertile days at any point of your menstrual cycle.
However, when in doubt you should consult your gynecologist.
This article is merely informative, oneHOWTO does not have the authority to prescribe any medical treatments or create a diagnosis. We invite you to visit your doctor if you have any type of condition or pain.
If you want to read similar articles to How To Calculate My Fertile Days, we recommend you visit our Family health category.