Today’s post is a Guest Post from Novelette Simonds, who runs a site called Fertility Haven. If you’re looking to get pregnant, or just learn more about your fertility, I’d definitely check it out!
I was sitting enjoying a nice breakfast of scrambled eggs, when a strange thought suddenly hit me, I thought, I wish we women were like hens. Why would something like that occur to me? Probably because I had yet again heard another woman express disbelief at learning that women do not constantly produce fresh eggs and that we are born as little girls with all the eggs we will ever have and there’s no chance of making a fresh batch, absolutely no chance. That means your eggs are always as old as you are. I remembered that seven years ago when I started studying fertility, this one left me reeling. I hadn’t found Mr. Right yet and was in my mid-twenties and busy doing my second degree and working. I didn’t have motherhood in mind for at least another five years, it certainly was not the happiest fertility fact I had encountered. The truth is we have limited eggs and they age with us, by the age of thirty about ninety percent of them will have been used up or deteriorated. Fortunately in the early thirties most women still have a good set even if there are ten percent left, so they have babies just fine but it becomes harder as you get further on into the thirties. It is difficult to believe that with all the advances in modern science, they still haven’t figured out how to prevent our eggs from deteriorating.
On a happier note, here is an interesting fact, all of us were once inside our grandmother’s tummy. How is that possible? Well your mother had all her eggs in her ovaries while she was in-utero, which means half of you was inside her, while she was inside your grandmother. Amazing!
I think it’s time though that we dispel one fertility myth that still exists today about when women ovulate. Many people still believe that a woman can ovulate at anytime in her cycle and that women are constantly ovulating and popping eggs out, this is simply not the case, ovulation happens once per cycle and that’s it, if you don’t catch the fertile window then you have missed your opportunity to conceive that cycle. The fertile window begins about five days before ovulation and lasts about one day after ovulation has occurred.
I remember the first time I told my cousin that I was trying to get pregnant, she told me that I should get an ovulation predictor kit. I never did buy one, I have always preferred more natural methods. I began watching my cervical mucus instead. I will confess here, that I don’t consider it to be the most pleasant of activities to perform on a daily basis but I did it anyway because it is the best way to find out whether or not it is baby making time. A check of the seat of the underwear usually does the trick or using a piece of tissue to check whenever you use the bathroom is always better or if you are brave enough, trim your nails, squat and just reach in with two fingers and see what’s happening by pulling some fluid off the cervix. Cervical mucus is of course the natural fluid that your cervix begins to excrete after your period ends, it usually starts off sticky or pasty, a bit like paper glue then moves on to being lotiony or milky, in the final phase it becomes eggwhite, this is prime baby making fluid. I remember running out of the bathroom and screaming, “Eggwhite! Eggwhite! Eggwhite!” to my spouse and he would say, “That’s so gross, could you just say it’s babymaking time, please.” The key to getting pregnant then is recognizing the fertile window, once you see lotiony or milky fluid it time to start trying to conceive and when egg white hits then you know that an egg is about to pop. The reason that you should start even before you notice eggwhite mucus is because sperm can survive for up to five days, so in case you miss your eggwhite days you still have a chance at conceiving. You should always keep in mind though that there is only a twenty five percent chance to conceive every month, so don’t let those negative tests turn you off, unless you have been trying for a year, then medical intervention should be sought but otherwise, just keep at it! After a baby making session try lying flat on your back for at least fifteen minutes, it has been found to help women having artificial insemination conceive, so I don’t see any reason why it shouldn’t help those of us going about it the natural way as well.
Remember too to look out for secondary fertility signs, such as dull achiness in the area of the ovary as well as a sharp pain, this is often a sign of impending ovulation and serves as a backup for confirming cervical mucus changes.
Whether you are trying to conceive that first, second, third or whichever number child. Cervical mucus observation as well as observation of secondary fertility signs is always the most effective and most reliable method of predicting ovulation, so you have the best chance of conceiving.
Novelette Simmonds is the founder of Fertility Haven, the website provides comprehensive information about fertility, as well as your pregnancy and childbirth visit the site and take control of your reproductive health today.