Most women stay confused with the time of their ovulation or the duration of fertile period. A figure of 90% is often quoted as the proportion of couples, who are sexually healthy and are in their 20s and 30s and are not using any birth control measures, who will be expecting a child after staying together for a year. It is interesting to know that you have a high chance of getting pregnant at the time of ovulation. It is a small window period that comes each month. It is the time when your ovary produces ovum or egg and the egg is open for fertilisation. Even if you are having sex two or three days before ovulation, there is a high possibility of fertilisation. After ovulation is over, the window period gets shut for the next cycle. It is the safe period. Though doctors say that it cannot be considered 100% safe to have unprotected sex during this period, the chances of getting pregnant are considerably lower.

When does ovulation actually start?
It should be remembered that ovulation takes place at the middle of your menstrual cycle. It usually occurs halfway through the cycle. Commonly, the average time period of a cycle is 28 days. In such cases, ovulation will occur approx on 14th day (first day of bleeding is counted as day 1 of cycle). But, in some cases, women may have cycles as long as 23 to 35 days. In these women, ovulation day varies from 9th day to 21st day of cycle.

How will you know that you are ovulating?

Check your calendar: It is a healthy habit to keep a menstrual calendar. Now a days, a number of apps are available for maintaining menstrual calender. You must maintain the dates for a few months. This will give you an idea as to when you actually ovulate.It is difficult to know the actual time of ovulation if you are having irregular periods.
Carefully listen to your body: It is a common thing that your body spontaneously sends a memo to you before ovulation starts. You get cramps or feel pain in the lower abdomen before ovulation starts. This pain is called mittelschmerz. It is a reminder of the coming periods.
Chart your body temperature: Well, you will need to keep a record of your basal body temperature. You can measure it early morning before getting up from bed. Your basal body temperature changes throughout the monthly ovulation cycle. Progesterone hormone is responsible for the increase in body temperature. In the first half of the month, the progesterone levels are low and hence the temperature remains low as compared to the second half of ovulation.
Ovulation kits- You can also use an ovulation detector kit to know the dates. Many kits are available in market to know the days of your peak fertility. You need to start using them from day 9. Take the urine test daily preferrably in afternoon. Initially there will be a single line in the kit. Gradually you will notice a second light coloured line. You need to take the test daily until both the lines are of same intensity. The day you get same coloured lines in the kit, it is the day you should start having intercourse. Next few days are of peak fertility so stay together atleast for next 3-4 days.
Fertile Period: Three days prior to ovulation and two days after ovulation are considered the fertile period because a sperm can remain alive for 3 days inside female genital tract and an ovum once released, is available for 2 days for fertilisation.
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