Let’s Talk Ovulation, Your ‘Fertility Window’ and Making Babies

Along with ovulation, pay attention to your weight, medical history and stress levels if you’re trying to conceive.

Updated
Her Health
4 min read
Ovulation - repeat it to yourself. Thrice. Herein lies the answer to many of your pregnancy related problems.
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Snapshot

Pregnancy is as much about fertility and healthy bodies as it is about planning. Other than planning your financial and emotional security, it’s also important to watch your menstrual cycle closely if you are trying to get pregnant. The one word that you want to understand is ovulation.

Ovulation - repeat it to yourself. Thrice. Herein lies the answer to many of your pregnancy related problems.

But...

Let’s Talk Ovulation, Your ‘Fertility Window’ and Making Babies

  1. 1. What is Ovulation?

    Ovulation is the process of the release of a mature egg from the ovary.
    Ovulation is the process of the release of a mature egg from the ovary.
    (Photo: iStockphoto)

    Ovulation is the process of the release of a mature egg from the ovary. It moves across the fallopian tube where it is available for fertilisation by a sperm.

    The fertilisation leads to the formation of a zygote which eventually becomes an embryo in the uterus.

    Interestingly, an egg or ovum is the largest human cell and is visible without a microscope.

    Too caught up to read? Listen to the story:

    Expand
  2. 2. How Does Ovulation Affect Pregnancy?

    You’re most likely to get pregnant a day or two before you begin to ovulate.
    You’re most likely to get pregnant a day or two before you begin to ovulate.
    (Photo: iStockphoto)

    You’re most likely to get pregnant a day or two before you begin to ovulate. There is actually a six day window right before ovulation, along with the ovulation day itself, which offers a good chance of pregnancy.

    Thanks to the primeval instincts, for many women, the sexual drive is higher around the time when their bodies are most likely to procreate.

    That is not to say women can’t get pregnant otherwise. Women can get pregnant even during their period. But the timeline around ovulation is your most likely window.

    Expand
  3. 3. How Do You Figure Out the Timing of Your Ovulation?

     Ovulation happens 14 days before your next period if you have an average 28 day cycle.
    Ovulation happens 14 days before your next period if you have an average 28 day cycle.
    (Photo: iStockphoto)

    The first day of your menstruation is also the first day of your menstrual cycle. The last day is the last day before the next period. Ovulation happens 14 days before your next period if you have an average 28-day cycle. However, it varies from person to person, even for women with regular menstrual cycles.

    The chances of pregnancy increases by 27-33 percent in the three days leading to ovulation and decline rapidly immediately after, according to Fertility Coalition, Australia.

    For many women, who have a 28-30-day cycle, the fertile period starts from the 10th day from the first day of their periods.
    Dr Monika Wadhawan, Senior Consultant, Department of Obstetrics and Gyneacology, Fortis Hospital Noida
    Expand
  4. 4. Breaking Down Your Menstruation

    The chances of pregnancy increases by 27-33 percent in the three days leading to ovulation and decline rapidly immediately after.
    The chances of pregnancy increases by 27-33 percent in the three days leading to ovulation and decline rapidly immediately after.
    (Infographics Courtesy: Arnica Kala/FIT)
    Expand
  5. 5. With Ovulation in Place, Some Other Factors to Look At

    Being under or over weight might be detrimental to your fertility.
    Being under or over weight might be detrimental to your fertility.
    (Photo: iStockphoto) 

    You figured out your ovulation, but conception still seems to be a problem? Here are a few things you might want to check:

    1. Weight: Being under or over weight might be detrimental to your fertility. The advised body mass index (BMI) for a healthy body is between 18 to 24, which is also conducive if you’re trying to get pregnant. Additionally, women who are obese are more likely to develop polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a leading cause of infertility, asserts a Fertility and Sterility study (2009).

    On the other hand, being underweight might lead to the deficiency of the hormone leptin which regulates hunger. Another 2009 study by Harvard concludes that lack of leptin disrupts periods, and therefore, fertility.

    While staying fit is important, being over-zealous about your fitness is not a good idea either. Reports suggest that strenuous exercise can actually disrupt your menstrual cycle, causing problems in conception.

    2. Pre-Existing Medical Conditions: Consult your doctor to check for medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, thyroid, epilepsy. All of these are linked to affecting pregnancy and conception.

    Consult your doctor to check for medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, thyroid, epilepsy.
    Consult your doctor to check for medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, thyroid, epilepsy.
    (Photo: iStockphoto)

    Add to this sexually transmitted diseases and you realise knowing your medical history is a must when it comes to pregnancy.

    STIs like chlamydia and gonorrhea have the capability of causing fertility problems even years after their contraction. In some cases, women might be unaware of the fact that they contracted the disease until they attempt a pregnancy.

    Dr Wadhawan adds:

    You can go through a few baseline tests like hemoglobin, sugar, thyroid or any other as advised by the gyneacologist. Also, you should start with consuming folic acid tablets while planning for a baby.

    3. Stress: Scientists are yet to conclude if stress is a definite factor linked to pregnancy. However, a 2014 study in Human Reproduction suggested a link between stress-related chemicals in the body and problems with conception. Additionally, stress is known to alter hormones and consequently, ovulation.

    (We at FIT are running a campaign to increase awareness about fertility. Get your queries on fertility answered by top specialists. Write to us at Fit@thequint.com or click here.)

    (Subscribe to FIT on Telegram)

    Expand

What is Ovulation?

Ovulation is the process of the release of a mature egg from the ovary.
Ovulation is the process of the release of a mature egg from the ovary.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Ovulation is the process of the release of a mature egg from the ovary. It moves across the fallopian tube where it is available for fertilisation by a sperm.

The fertilisation leads to the formation of a zygote which eventually becomes an embryo in the uterus.

Interestingly, an egg or ovum is the largest human cell and is visible without a microscope.

Too caught up to read? Listen to the story:

How Does Ovulation Affect Pregnancy?

You’re most likely to get pregnant a day or two before you begin to ovulate.
You’re most likely to get pregnant a day or two before you begin to ovulate.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

You’re most likely to get pregnant a day or two before you begin to ovulate. There is actually a six day window right before ovulation, along with the ovulation day itself, which offers a good chance of pregnancy.

Thanks to the primeval instincts, for many women, the sexual drive is higher around the time when their bodies are most likely to procreate.

That is not to say women can’t get pregnant otherwise. Women can get pregnant even during their period. But the timeline around ovulation is your most likely window.

How Do You Figure Out the Timing of Your Ovulation?

 Ovulation happens 14 days before your next period if you have an average 28 day cycle.
Ovulation happens 14 days before your next period if you have an average 28 day cycle.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

The first day of your menstruation is also the first day of your menstrual cycle. The last day is the last day before the next period. Ovulation happens 14 days before your next period if you have an average 28-day cycle. However, it varies from person to person, even for women with regular menstrual cycles.

The chances of pregnancy increases by 27-33 percent in the three days leading to ovulation and decline rapidly immediately after, according to Fertility Coalition, Australia.

For many women, who have a 28-30-day cycle, the fertile period starts from the 10th day from the first day of their periods.
Dr Monika Wadhawan, Senior Consultant, Department of Obstetrics and Gyneacology, Fortis Hospital Noida

Breaking Down Your Menstruation

The chances of pregnancy increases by 27-33 percent in the three days leading to ovulation and decline rapidly immediately after.
The chances of pregnancy increases by 27-33 percent in the three days leading to ovulation and decline rapidly immediately after.
(Infographics Courtesy: Arnica Kala/FIT)

With Ovulation in Place, Some Other Factors to Look At

Being under or over weight might be detrimental to your fertility.
Being under or over weight might be detrimental to your fertility.
(Photo: iStockphoto) 

You figured out your ovulation, but conception still seems to be a problem? Here are a few things you might want to check:

1. Weight: Being under or over weight might be detrimental to your fertility. The advised body mass index (BMI) for a healthy body is between 18 to 24, which is also conducive if you’re trying to get pregnant. Additionally, women who are obese are more likely to develop polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), a leading cause of infertility, asserts a Fertility and Sterility study (2009).

On the other hand, being underweight might lead to the deficiency of the hormone leptin which regulates hunger. Another 2009 study by Harvard concludes that lack of leptin disrupts periods, and therefore, fertility.

While staying fit is important, being over-zealous about your fitness is not a good idea either. Reports suggest that strenuous exercise can actually disrupt your menstrual cycle, causing problems in conception.

2. Pre-Existing Medical Conditions: Consult your doctor to check for medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, thyroid, epilepsy. All of these are linked to affecting pregnancy and conception.

Consult your doctor to check for medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, thyroid, epilepsy.
Consult your doctor to check for medical conditions like diabetes, asthma, thyroid, epilepsy.
(Photo: iStockphoto)

Add to this sexually transmitted diseases and you realise knowing your medical history is a must when it comes to pregnancy.

STIs like chlamydia and gonorrhea have the capability of causing fertility problems even years after their contraction. In some cases, women might be unaware of the fact that they contracted the disease until they attempt a pregnancy.

Dr Wadhawan adds:

You can go through a few baseline tests like hemoglobin, sugar, thyroid or any other as advised by the gyneacologist. Also, you should start with consuming folic acid tablets while planning for a baby.

3. Stress: Scientists are yet to conclude if stress is a definite factor linked to pregnancy. However, a 2014 study in Human Reproduction suggested a link between stress-related chemicals in the body and problems with conception. Additionally, stress is known to alter hormones and consequently, ovulation.

(We at FIT are running a campaign to increase awareness about fertility. Get your queries on fertility answered by top specialists. Write to us at Fit@thequint.com or click here.)

(Subscribe to FIT on Telegram)

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