Ovulation Symptoms

When does ovulation occur? How do I know when I am ovulating? Most women will have some signs of ovulation. Common ovulation symptoms include the following:

Basal Body Temperature (BBT)

When you are ovulating, your body temperature will raise. Since the amount of temperature raise is not high, and because body temperature can easily change due to body activities, the best way to find the change in temperature is to measure the temperature when your body is at rest. This is call the basal body temperature. You'll need to take your body temperature at the very beginning of the day, just after you wake up.

You'll want to take your basal body temperature with a basal thermometer. Take your basal body temperature every morning at about the same time for consistency.

You will want to plot your temperature on a chart, and once you see at least a 0.4 degree Fahrenheit increase in body temperature, it's a sign that you very likely have ovulated. The elevated temperature will stay until you get your next period. If you are pregnant, your basal temperature will stay elevated throughout the pregnancy. Therefore, once the basal body temperature stays up for 18 days or longer, you'll want to have a pregnancy test.

One problem with BBT is that you will detect the temperature raise after ovulation has occurred, and often it is already too late to have intercourse in time for pregnancy. Therefore, most experts recommend combining BBT with cervical mucus.

Hormone (LH) Surge

There is no physical sign for this symptom. Rather, many of the ovulation predictor kits use this as the basis for the test.

Cervical Mucus

When a woman is about to ovulate, her vaginal discharge (cervical mucus) can become clear, slippery, and stretchy, similar to that of raw egg white. Hence, monitoring your cervical mucus is a good way to predict ovulation.

Mild abdominal cramps

Also known as mittelschmerz. About 20% of the women will experience this type of ovulation pain.

Additionally, some women may also experience one or more of the following signs of ovulation:

  • Mid-cycle ovulatory bleeding / spotting
  • Swelling and possible tenderness of groin lymph nodes
  • Breast tenderness
  • Bloating
  • Changes in cervical firmness and positioning
  • Increased sex drive

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