How Can I Test My Ovulation at Home?
Ovulation occurs during the menstrual cycle. It describes when an egg is released from the ovaries. It happens at roughly the same time in the cycle every month so if you have a fairly regular cycle you could be able to track it easily.
The egg will be able to live for 24 hours after ovulation and sperm can live inside the fallopian tubes for up to 5 days. Pregnancy occurs when a sperm meets the egg so if you do not want to get pregnant make sure to use protection.
A couple who does not use birth control or any protection and does not have fertility problems should usually have around 25% to 30% chance of conceiving each cycle. You can only conceive when the egg is viable which is actually quite a small window so if you are aiming to get pregnant then being able to track your ovulation is a great place to begin.
Remember though that your cycle may not always be consistently the same and it is not always easy to figure out when you are ovulating.
So, how can you test your ovulation at home?
How long does ovulation last?
If you have a totally regular cycle then ovulation would likely occur between day 11 and day 21 of your cycle. If you have shorter cycles you are likely to ovulate closer to day 11 and if they are longer you are more likely to ovulate closer to day 21.
Remember an egg is able to be fertilized 12 to 24 hours after ovulation.
Signs of ovulation
When ovulating, some women experience no signs whilst others experience a lot. These are some of the main signs of ovulation:
- Changes in body temperature.
- Changes in cervical positioning.
- A libido boost.
- Vulva changes.
- Ovulation pain.
- Changes in cervical mucus.
- Light spotting.
- Breast tenderness.
Throughout your cycle, your hormone levels change. In the first half of your menstrual cycle, your ovaries release oestrogen and once the level of oestrogen is high enough then your ovaries will release an egg.
Next, your body will produce progesterone which is another hormone that will increase your body temperature.
The hormones also affect your cervical mucus. As your body prepares for you to begin ovulating it will create more cervical mucus and it becomes more slippery which is to help sperm get to the egg. It is described as being like raw egg whites and when the mucus has this consistency you should be in your window of fertility.
How to track ovulation.
There are a few different ways that you could use to track your ovulation if you wish. These could help you to plan a pregnancy if that is your goal.
- Use an ovulation calculator.
- Keep a calendar or diary with the dates of your cycle.
- Get an app that tracks your period.
- Monitoring your temperature and changes in your vaginal mucus.
- Use an ovulation prediction kit.
- Use an ovulation test - ovulation tests work by detecting the level of luteinizing hormone in urine and can work with up to 99% accuracy.
How can I test my ovulation at home?
The best way to test your ovulation at home is to order a test online. Ovulation tests detect the amount of luteinizing hormone in your urine. This works because ovulation occurs when two hormones - luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone - increase. This means that a higher level of luteinizing hormone means that you are ovulating.
What is Basal Body Temperature (BBT)?
Another great way to find out if you are ovulating is to chart your BBT. You should do this by getting a special BBT thermometer and taking your temperature at the same time every single day and plotting it onto a chart.
The best time to do this is in the morning before you get up or do anything else and you should try and make sure this is at the same time every day where possible.
A temperature increase of about 0.4 degrees Fahrenheit can be an indication of ovulation and it should be the highest temperature that you have taken in the previous six days.
Once you have been taking your BBT and charting it for a few months you should hopefully be able to see a pattern emerge and this can help you to track your ovulation.
What causes ovulation to not take place?
Ovulation occurs when two hormones - luteinizing hormone and follicle-stimulating hormone - increase. So, if ovulation is not happening it is usually a result of a hormone imbalance.
Some of the issues that can cause this are:
Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) - The most common cause of anovulation is PCOS which causes ovulation to occur irregularly or not at all. PCOS can also cause other things such as excessive hair growth and acne.
Premature ovarian insufficiency (POI) - This is what it is called when a person's ovaries stop working before the age of 40. Although some medical conditions are known to be able to cause POI many people do not know the cause. Despite this around 5% to 10% of women with POI are able to get pregnant naturally.
Hypothalamus or pituitary gland dysfunction - The hypothalamus and the pituitary gland produce the hormones needed for ovulation. Anything that interferes with them will interfere with ovulation.
Diminished ovarian reserve (DOR) - People born with ovaries are born with all of the eggs that they will ever produce which means the supply decreases over time. DOR means that you have fewer eggs left than is normal. Now, this can have many different causes and sometimes even goes unexplained but people with DOR are sometimes able to get pregnant naturally.
Functional hypothalamic amenorrhea (FHA) - FHA is a condition that can be caused by things like excessive exercise and stress and is sometimes linked to anorexia.
Menopause - Menopause happens naturally to every person who is born with ovaries usually between the ages of 45 and 55. This is when periods stop completely. There are, of course, other symptoms such as hot flushes, mood changes and problems with sleep.
How do you know if you are never ovulating?
Firstly, if you have found that for whatever reason you did not ovulate on your most recent cycle this does not necessarily mean that you are never ovulating.
An anovulatory cycle is one where your ovaries do not release an egg. This is pretty common, particularly in younger people and it happens in around a third of normal menstrual cycles, they are nothing to worry about.
If you are concerned that you are experiencing this frequently though make sure you test again the next month. If you find that you have not ovulated for a few cycles in a row and you are trying to conceive you may want to speak to your doctor about what you can do next.
How can we help?
At Official Rapid Tests we offer an Instant Ovulation Test so that you can determine when you are ovulating.
It's just £14.99 and is an easy and quick way to track your ovulation.
The Instant Ovulation self-test is used for the detection of the peak level of luteinizing hormone (LH) in urine to aid in the detection of ovulation. The test can aid in the detection of ovulation with up to 99% accuracy.
Our tests use Medical Laboratory Management Software.
If you need to know how to register click here.
To find a test centre location near you click here.