Changes in cervical secretions
During each month, the mucus secreted by the vagina and the cervix is changing due to changes in levels of estrogen and progesterone. By measuring and tracking how cervical mucus changes you can determine how close or far is your ovulation.
Once your period stops, you will usually have a few “dry” days. In the first week you may notice that your cervical secretions become sticky. A few days before ovulation, the mucus becomes clear, watery and yellowish. On the day of ovulation it becomes denser, moist and stretchy (like egg white) and you can have a sense of moisture in the vagina. The day after ovulation, you have less mucus, which becomes thicker and sticky.
How to track cervical mucus changes?
Although the test is simple, it is important to practice and record all changes. By observing changes in cervical mucus, look for changes in consistency, quantity and color.
Each morning (when you go to the toilet) check the mucus in the vagina. Although changes can be seen externally, while whipping with a white toilet paper, it’s better to check your cervical mucus by sliding one or two fingers into your vagina. To check if you’re ovulating press cervical mucus between finger and thumb and slowly slide your fingers apart. If the cervical mucus stretches, you probably ovulate. The second infertile phase starts four days after the peak of mucus secretion (ovulation).
What you need to pay particular attention to when tracking cervical mucus changes:
- Is your vagina dry, moist or very moist?
- Do any secretions remain on your fingers or toilet paper?
- Is your cervical mucus stretchy and slippery, creamy or sticky?
- Are your secretions clear, white or almost non-existent?
- Can you stretch the mucus between your two fingers? (If you can, mucus shows you that you are very fertile!)
Drawbacks and limitations of this method
It is difficult to determine the changes in the mucus if you recently had sexual intercourse. Due to the presence of seminal fluid mucus will look different. Keep in mind that sexual arousal, use of lubricants or spermicides, the use of antihistamines and vaginal infections can also affect your cervical secretions.
Measurement of mucus is not a completely reliable form of determining fertility, so do not rely on it if you want to avoid pregnancy. It is more helpful for women who want to conceive, by helping them recognize their stage of fertility and ovulation.