The release of a matured egg from the ovary is known as Ovulation, and it plays the most vital role in pregnancy. A woman can be pregnant only if the released egg gets fertilized with the male sperm. Ovulation occurs within 12-14th day of the menstrual cycle.
A surge in the level of Luteinizing hormone facilitates the release of the egg. This egg passes through the fallopian tube, where it is fertilized by the sperm.
Normally, a menstrual cycle occurs within a gap of 28-31 days. Women having normal and regular menstrual cycles can determine the ovulation period counting the days from the first day of the periods. It is not always easy to determine the ovulation period accurately as the length of the menstrual cycle varies with each woman. The rule of the thumb is that if a woman has a regular menstrual cycle of 28 days, her ovulation will start from the 14th day, counting from the first day of the periods.
Determining the ovulation period is very crucial for the couples planning to have a baby. Chances of pregnancy are higher in the ovulation period, if regular intercourse is carried out during the ovulation period as the egg is ready by that time to get fertilized with the sperm. The egg should be fertilized within 24-48 hours of its release from the ovary otherwise it starts disintegrating and is ultimately released out of the body through the menstrual bleeding.
Women with irregular menstrual cycles may have a tough time in calculating the ovulation period accurately. In this case, other physical indications prior to the start of a menstrual cycle can help in determining the ovulation period.
Tenderness in the breasts: Women often experience tenderness in their breasts 10-15 days before the start of the menstruation, which indicate the ovulation period.
Rise in Basal Body Temperature: A slight rise in the Basal Body temperature of about 0.4-0.6 Celsius is observed after the ovulation. One can determine the ovulation period by keeping a record of the Basal Body temperatures of the menstrual cycles. This record should be maintained from the first day of the menstruation cycle.
Change in Cervical Mucous: Change in the density and volume of the cervical mucous is another indication of ovulation. Cervical mucous provides a healthy medium to enable the sperms to swim to the fallopian tube and get fertilized with the egg. The texture changes and the mucous becomes semi-transparent and slippery in nature.
Pain in the Lower Abdomen or Mittelschmerz: Many women feel mild pain or discomfort in the lower abdominal region few days before the periods, indicative of ovulation period. The pain may be moderate or like sharp pangs that can last for few minutes to few hours. This pain can be felt for 1-2 days of the ovulation period and subsides naturally.