Ovulation: date, symptoms and period of fertility


By  YEET | MAGAZINE  Published 0940 GMT (1740 HKT) May 28, 2021

Fertility / Getting pregnant  

What is ovulation in the menstrual cycle ?

If the calculation of the date is never 100% exact, there are symptoms that can be used to spot it. Explanations.

interrogation point

What is ovulation?

During the menstrual cycle, ovulation occurs when an ovary releases an egg . Until then, the cell was stored in an ovarian follicle, which developed during the first phase of the cycle (follicular phase).

This stage is essential for reproduction: without ovulation, no pregnancy is possible.

The ovulation process begins at the end of puberty, when the first period begins. The woman already has all her eggs, since birth.

In each menstrual cycle, in theory, an egg is pushed out of the ovary.

The egg is fertilizable for about 24 hours. It will follow the movements created in the fallopian tube, which will slowly direct it towards the uterus .

  • If there is sperm in the tube at this time, there may be fertilization . The egg thus formed continues its journey, nourished by the tubal fluid. It then arrives in the uterus where it is implanted in the mucous membrane (the endometrium ), which is very rich in blood vessels that supply it with oxygen and glycogen. This process lasts 6 to 12 days.
  • If there has been no fertilization, the egg will disintegrate during its journey to the uterus. The menstrual cycle will continue until the next period.

When does ovulation occur?

It is very difficult to calculate the date of ovulation. Indeed, it occurs at the end of the follicular phase. However, this varies in each woman depending on whether her cycle is regular or not.

  • Regular cycle: ovulation takes place +/- the same day in each cycle.
  • Irregular cycle: ovulation takes place at different times from one cycle to another.

The regularity of cycles can be influenced by factors such as stress or jet lag, for example.
The second phase of the menstrual cycle (the luteal phase) begins after ovulation. Regular, it usually lasts 14 days. This benchmark is used to calculate the date of ovulation a posteriori, going back 2 weeks from the first day of menstruation.

Symptoms of ovulation

Ovulation is announced by certain physical signs.

The consistency and amount of cervical mucus

At the time of ovulation, the cervical glands produce a rich, clear, stringy secretion (similar to a raw egg white) .The mucus becomes cloudy and less abundant during the second phase of the cycle.

The pH of the vagina

The temperature curve

Period of fertility

The fertile period lasts about 6 days: the 5 days before ovulation and the day of ovulation itself.

Unprotected sex introduces sperm into the vagina. During the ovulatory period, these cross the cervical neck, then the uterus and go up in the tubes to meet a potential egg. They stay alive for 5 days. If these days coincide with the release of an egg, the chances of fertilization - and therefore pregnancy - increase dramatically.

Fertilization cannot take place outside the fertile period. However, because the date of ovulation cannot be predicted with certainty, this interval may begin earlier or later from cycle to cycle.

This is why it is recommended to use contraception at any time during the menstrual cycle if you do not want pregnancy.

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