If you are trying to conceive, having sex when you are most fertile is obviously the fastest path to parenthood. Of course, that begs the question, exactly when are you most fertile?
Even though you can have sex anytime, there are only a few days each month you are able to conceive. In fact, the time frame for conception may be measured in mere hours, rather then days. Timing sex for when you are most fertile is crucial for getting pregnant as quickly as possible.
You are most fertile when you have just ovulated.Â Each month (if you are ovulating regularly), one mature egg bursts from your ovary into your fallopian tube, where it awaits sperm for approximately 12 to 24 hours.Â If no sperm are present or arrive to fertilize the egg, it passes though your system unfertilized, and a few weeks later your period starts.
To take advantage of the few hours when you are most fertile, the egg should be released to sperm already waiting in your fallopian tube.Â This means you should have sex to get pregnant before you ovulate, even though you aren’t technically able to conceive until after you ovulate.
Sperm can live inside of you for 3 to 5 days in ideal conditions.Â Fortunately, conditions are nearly perfect for sperm survival when you are most fertile.Â Your body produces cervical mucus which protects the sperm from your immune system’s natural inclination to remove “foreign invaders” by flushing them out or killing them off with acidic secretions. One way to recognize when you are most fertile is to track the arrival of this sperm-friendly cervical mucus.Â It tends to show up a few days before you ovulate and becomes most abundant at the peak of your fertility.Â So when you notice fertile cervical mucus, it’s time for baby making sex!
Use Ovulation Predictor Kits to Know When You Are Most Fertile
Another way to be sure you’re having intercourse when you are most fertile is by using ovulation predictor kits (opks) or ovulation predictor strips. Right before your ovary releases an egg, the level of Luteinizing Hormone (LH) surges in your body. The presence of LH hormone can be detected in your urine. Ovulation predictor kits or strips are available for you to use at home to test yourself for the presence of the hormone. When you get a positive test, you know LH is surging, ovulation is near, and you are entering your most fertile time of the month.
Don’t assume that you are most fertile in the middle of your menstrual cycle.
You’ve probably heard stories of women who got pregnant during their period or some other odd time of the month.Â This is because ovulation can be unpredictable. On average (if you have a typical 28 day cycle), you are most fertile 14 days after your period starts. However, many women don’t fit the norms and may ovulate 8 days after their period starts or 20 days into their cycle.Â Your ovulation day can also vary from month to month, depending on your health, stress, or activity levels. The only way to know for sure when you are most fertile is to track your signs of fertility every month and use ovulation predictors.