Get the facts on ovulation calendars, fertility monitors and more
There are many methods to track ovulation, the most fertile time in your cycle. From a simple personal record of your menstrual cycle to high-tech fertility monitors, women use all kinds of tools to help them conceive. Learn about the different devices to use, their accuracy and what you can expect to pay for them.
Ovulation refers to the moment that the egg is released from the ovary, and it is the most fertile time of the menstrual cycle. The lifespan of the egg is a mere 24 hours, so it can be very helpful to know precisely when your body will ovulate in order to increase your chances of conception. Most women use an ovulation predictor to try to conceive before they turn to fertility drugs for help.
An ovulation calendar is the traditional approach to fertility planning, as it only relies on a record of your menstrual patterns to determine your time of ovulation. Keeping track of the start, middle and end of your cycle will help you to determine when you are likely to become pregnant—ovulation generally takes place about 14 days after the beginning of the menstrual cycle, and begins the luteal phase of the monthly cycle. At this time, body temperature will increase and certain hormones will be released. You can find an ovulation chart and ovulation calculator online to help you figure out the phases of your specific cycle, but these tools can be inaccurate if your cycle is irregular.
Types of Fertility Monitors
While all fertility monitors are computerized devices that track fertile stages of a woman's cycle, some brands of fertility monitors are marketed as pregnancy aids only and others are meant to be used as a method of birth control as well. An ovulation test may assess hormone levels in urine or saliva, or monitor basal body temperature to determine the period of ovulation.
The Clear Plan Fertility Monitor, also known as the Clear Blue Easy Fertility Monitor, is a popular model because it is compact, accurate and easy to use. It comes in the form of a handheld device designed to identify up to six days of fertility, display your fertility level every day and will store your personal fertility information for easy reference. This monitor requires a urine sample to evaluate hormone levels and determine if you are likely to get pregnant.
The OvaCue Fertility Monitor is a slightly more advanced device, with an interactive multicolor display that shows your cycle on a calendar and doesn't require a urine sample. Instead, this monitor tracks changes in the electrolytes in your saliva to isolate the best time for conception. It claims to be the most accurate fertility device on the market, and will last for many years, but the bells and whistles in this monitor come at a higher price point.
Pregnant or planning a family? Mobile Mom is here to help. We have the tools you need from the friends you trust. Calculate when you’re most fertile, see if you might be pregnant, or get the support you need from other moms with apps by Mobile Mom.