Can I tell I’m ovulating based on my body’s symptoms?
By Heather Frame, BSN, RN | October 31, 2022
A woman’s body has the incredible ability to offer insight on when ovulation may occur just based on symptoms alone. This is especially important to pay attention to during your TTC (trying to conceive) journey as identifying ovulation is an essential component of achieving pregnancy.
So let’s dive right in and discuss the different symptoms you may experience near ovulation, how and when to test for ovulation, and the best way to take charge of your fertility with the help of the Premom app!
Since every woman’s body is unique, it’s possible to experience differing signs of ovulation. Near ovulation, you may notice some relatively common symptoms including:
- Mild pelvic pain with or without cramping
- Increased sex drive
- Breast tenderness
- Slight nausea
- Abdominal bloating
- Heightened senses including smell, taste, and vision
- Thin, clear, stretchy (like raw egg whites) cervical mucus
- Soft, high, open cervix
- Positive ovulation test (OPKs)
- Elevated basal body temperature (BBT)
Some women experience mild pelvic pain, cramping, and/or spotting. This discomfort and spotting is commonly due to follicle rupture that results in the release of the egg. Sometimes the pain can be felt more on one side, usually indicating which ovary released the egg.
Fluctuations in hormones like estrogen and progesterone cause changes in cervical mucus near ovulation. A transition to thin, clear, and stretchy (like raw egg whites) cervical mucus creates a perfect consistency for sperm to travel to fertilize the egg.
A sudden rise in estrogen and luteinizing hormone (LH) before ovulation can also increase a woman’s sensitivity to her surroundings resulting in heightened senses. In addition, this complex combination of increased hormone levels can lead to increased sex drive, breast tenderness, mild nausea, and abdominal bloating.
Cervical position changes near ovulation to allow sperm to enter more easily. The cervix will become soft, move to a high position, and its opening will widen as another indicator of heightened fertility.
Positive ovulation tests will appear just before ovulation with a peak ovulation reading occurring 24 hours before you ovulate. After successful ovulation, a swift rise in BBT can be observed due to the hormone progesterone which increases your basal body temperature and can help you pinpoint your actual ovulation day. Let’s discuss how to use this to your advantage!
How to find and confirm ovulation day
Though ovulation symptoms can give clues as to when you may ovulate, symptom observations are best utilized in conjunction with the following:
- Ovulation predictor kits (OPKs)
- Testing Luteinizing Hormone (LH) daily after your period ends to find your LH peak
- Tracking basal body temperature (BBT) daily for ovulation confirmation
Tracking ovulation through the means of OPKs in addition to observing other physiological signs gives a more in-depth look at what your body is doing. Ovulation tests detect LH levels in the urine which surge around 24 hours before ovulation. OPKs are effective at detecting your fertile window, so by testing daily you will be able to predict when ovulation will most likely occur. Studies have shown that women who use OPKs achieve pregnancy up to two menstrual cycles sooner than those who do not.
While your body is capable of communicating many fertile signs, it does not always result in successful ovulation. Charting your BBT daily, in addition to LH testing, is important because it can confirm ovulation. To efficiently track BBT, you’ll need a basal body temperature thermometer.
After sleeping for at least 3 consecutive hours, check your temperature immediately upon waking before getting out of bed. Try to check at the same time each day to ensure accuracy and look for the spike in temperature that should occur within 1 to 3 days after ovulation.
Feel empowered with Premom while trying to conceive
A woman’s body is a truly remarkable system! Pair your body’s fertile signs with the use of cycle tracking to maximize your chances of conception. Studies have shown that tracking your cycle with an app increases your likelihood of pregnancy! By using the Premom app, you will have the ability to track your period, various symptoms of ovulation, access to an in-app camera that will read LH tests for you, a detailed BBT chart that can confirm ovulation, and a physician designed cycle analysis report and cycle comparison report that can identify your unique cycle patterns for better ovulation prediction in future cycles.
Our team of fertility experts are available for virtual consultations through the Premom app – please feel free to schedule a consultation if you are having trouble understanding fertility signs or how to track your cycles efficiently!
Heather Frame is a compassionate Women's Health nurse. She specializes in obstetrics, postpartum, newborn care, and lactation counseling. She is committed to providing women the support they need to achieve pregnancy and thereafter. As a personal user of Premom, she can attest to how important charting your cycles is in conjunction with achieving pregnancy. She would love to help you navigate your fertility journey. Schedule a consultation with Nurse Heather right through your Premom app!
Increased Likelihood of Pregnancy Using an App-Connected Ovulation Test System: A Randomized Controlled Trial | Journal of Women's Health (liebertpub.com)
Detection of ovulation, a review of currently available methods - PMC (nih.gov)
Should home-based ovulation predictor kits be offered as an additional approach for fertility management for women and couples desiring pregnancy? A systematic review and meta-analysis | BMJ Global Health