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How to Track Your Ovulation

A Woman's Guide to Ovulation If You're New to This Whole "Trying to Conceive" Thing


If you are ready to take the step toward having a baby, there's another big "O" to consider when having sex: ovulation. And there are some helpful facts you should know before you and your partner start going at it like rabbits (if you haven't already) that can make conceiving a child a little bit easier. Knowledge is power, after all, right?

First thing's first. What is ovulation anyway? According to the American Pregnancy Association, it's "when a mature egg is released from the ovary, pushed down the fallopian tube, and is made available to be fertilized." Easy enough.

So when, ahem, exactly would that be?

Ovulation occurs right smack in the middle of a woman's menstrual cycle, so if your average cycle lasts 28 days, expect to ovulate on or around day 14.

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When it comes to nailing down the best possible time to conceive, the timetable is pretty cut and dry. A report from Your Fertility puts it in simple terms: pregnancy is technically only possible during the five days before ovulation through to the day of ovulation. So if math isn't your thing, that's a good rule of thumb.

You might be surprised that the odds of getting pregnant can change by up to 10 percent depending on the day. The "fertile window," as it's often referred to in medical fields, lasts six days out of a woman's full menstrual cycle. And yes, those numbers really do matter. Your chance of getting pregnant hovers at 27-33 percent if you make it a point to have sex during the three days leading up to and including ovulation.

There is a flip side to that high percentage, though, because once you're done ovulating for the month, your chances of being able to conceive decrease rapidly — like as soon as 12 hours after the fact.

And if you're simply just too busy to keep track of your ovulation cycle but want to get pregnant, experts recommend getting it on every two or three days to increase your chances.


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