Surprising results of a recent study by Monash University in Melbourne Australia, showed that only 13 percent of women seeking fertility assistance, could accurately identify the most fertile time in their menstrual cycle. Is it possible that poor fertility knowledge could be a key factor in cases of infertility? It seems rather silly, but fertility awareness is often overlooked as a contributing factor in an infertile woman’s struggle to become pregnant naturally.
The study, published in the International Journal of Advanced Nursing, surveyed 204 infertile women seeking Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART). Of those 204 women, 68% believed they timed intercourse during their most fertile times each cycle, but really only 13% knew how to accurately identify their most fertile times – optimizing natural conception. Results clearly show that proper fertility awareness education is needed.
According to Kerry Hampton, from Monash University’s Department of General Practice, “Fertility education should be a fundamental part of pre-conception care, and the primary care of couples when they first report difficulty conceiving.”
“Accurately timed intercourse on fertile days of the menstrual cycle may reduce the time it takes a couple to get pregnant, helping some to avoid unnecessary ART treatment,” Ms Hampton said.
I couldn’t agree with Ms Hampton more. I review many fertility charts each week and often see couples trying for a baby on the wrong day. Knowing the natural rhythm of your personal menstrual cycle, it’s intricacies and noting changes is something we all should be brought up knowing. The sad truth is, that most women don’t and never will. The more you know about how your menstrual cycle works, the more likely you are to conceive and also verify a potential fertility problem. Fertility Charting is one of the best tools a woman can have to achieve pregnancy naturally!
Learn to Chart Your Menstrual Cycle
The first thing a couple should do if they are struggling to get pregnant is to learn the female partner’s most fertile time each cycle. You have a 6 day window to get pregnant, with only 2 peak days. Begin trying to conceive 3 days prior to ovulation, the day of ovulation and 2 days after that. If your male partner has low sperm count or poor sperm health, try to have sex only the day of ovulation. Abstaining from sexual intercourse for the days prior to ovulation will help to build up his sperm count. Most women ovulate 2 weeks (14 days) before menstruation begins. Charting helps you to know if and when ovulation may occur, which will help you to know when to try to conceive.
Some methods of charting like Basal Body Temperature (BBT) charting can help identify menstrual cycle irregularities, hormonal imbalance and even detect pregnancy. Fertility charting is relatively inexpensive, easy to learn and in most cases free to learn about.
How to Begin
Learn about all the different methods of charting. There are quite a few, so the first best place to begin is to read over our excellent Fertility Charting Guide. This guide has information, tips, videos and links to more information on specific charting methods all in one place. We also have a very active and supportive fertility charting group at our Natural Fertility Community. If you are not yet part of this community, please join, it is absolutely free and you will not regret it! If you are already a member of our Natural Fertility Community and are not part of the fertility charting group, consider joining. The ladies there always welcome newcomers; providing excellent question and answer support!
Once you decide what method of charting you want to begin, purchase all the necessary tools. Make a budget. How much will those tools cost? Are you willing to spend a bit more? The Clearblue Easy Fertility Monitor is the best we have found, but it costs quite a bit more. So, really it is up to what is going to work best for your personal needs. The longer you have been trying for a baby, the more likely you are to invest in charting. In time, fertility charting will become like second nature. I hope learning to chart helps you to get pregnant quicker and easier!
- Timing crucial in achieving pregnancy. (n.d.). Retrieved from https://www.monash.edu/news/articles/timing-crucial-in-achieving-pregnancy