Women Health

Signs Ovulation Is Over: Understanding Your Cycle

“We are trying,” you might have heard couples say. You know what they are trying for even without them specifying it. When a couple is ...

by Arie Jansen

Signs Ovulation Is Over: Understanding Your Cycle

“We are trying,” you might have heard couples say. You know what they are trying for even without them specifying it. When a couple is trying to get pregnant, (or avoid pregnancy) they will be tracking the ovulation phase rigorously every month.

Besides, tracking the ovulation window is an inevitable part of a woman’s life and has got high significance with respect to her menstrual cycle, fertility, and sexual life. Your chances of pregnancy are high during your ovulation period, or just before or after that.

Hence, it is important to look out for signs your ovulation is over or not to understand if you are inside or outside the fertility window. Through this article, you will learn all you need to know about ovulation and the various signs your ovulation is over.

What Is Ovulation?

Ovulation refers to the process where one of your ovaries releases a mature egg that moves down to the fallopian tube waiting for fertilization by a sperm. Ovulation typically happens around the middle of your cycle and lasts about 12-48 hours.

There are four phases in a menstrual cycle – the follicular phase, the ovulation phase, the luteal phase and the menstrual phase. Ovulation begins right after the menstrual phase, with the follicular phase, and continues till the ovaries release the egg.

In the follicular phase, the pituitary gland secretes FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone) which stimulates the growth of ovarian follicles carrying the immature egg. When the egg is almost ready to be released, the body secretes a high amount of estrogen to thicken the uterine wall for future implantation of the fertilized egg.

After the follicular phase, the high amount of estrogen in the body induces the release of LH (luteinizing hormone) which finally leads to the release of egg from the ovary.

The estrogen level now drops back to normal. Looking out for signs if your ovulation is over is not just important for family planning, but also for your general health and sexual life. 

Signs Ovulation Is Over

Ovulation is a period of hormone roller-coaster and due to this surge in hormones and other physiological changes in the body, when it is over, it might show a lot of signs that are physical, emotional, and hormonal. 

1. Changes in cervical mucus 

    It is one of the most prominent changes during your ovulation cycle. Before the beginning of your ovulation cycle, your cervical mucus is thick and creamy in a whitish/yellowish color. Sperms cannot survive in this thick mucus.

    When your ovulation begins, due to the rise in estrogen levels, your cervical mucus becomes clear, thin and slippery much like egg whites. This helps in the movement of the sperm towards the egg. After the ovulation phase your estrogen level declines, and progesterone increases which again makes your cervical mucus thick and cloudy. 

    2. Change in basal body temperature

      Basal body temperature is the temperature of the body in resting state. The basal body temperature of a woman’s body changes before, during, and after ovulation. Therefore, tracking BBT every morning when you wake up is an effective way to check if you have ovulated.

      Before you ovulate, there will be a slight decline in your basal body temperature. Increase in the level of progesterone causes the temperature to rise just before ovulation and it stays high just after ovulation.

      If the egg gets fertilized, the temperature stays high during the entire fertility period. Once ovulation is over, the progesterone level comes down and the body temperature is also restored to normal level.  

      3. Change in position of the cervix 

        Just before and during ovulation, the position of the cervix will be higher in the vagina. It will be more open, soft, and moist for the smooth entrance of the sperm. All the changes can be attributed to the spike in estrogen levels before the fertility window.

        After ovulation, the cervix will come down to its earlier position, lower in the vagina. It will be firmer and narrower now because it is not expecting any more sperm for fertilization. 

        4. Decrease in libido

          Your sex drive or libido increases before or during ovulation due to a surge in estrogen levels. It is nature’s way of trying to get you pregnant during your fertile window. Once the ovulation is over, your sex drive declines. 

          5. Change in breast tenderness

            Right before or during ovulation, your breasts might feel tender and the nipples sore. It is due to the fluctuating levels of estrogen and progesterone in the body. Your breasts may even grow a little in this phase. Once the ovulation window is over, these symptoms subside. 

            6. Mood swings subside 

              The hormonal fluctuations during ovulation might lead to mood swings in most women. You may suddenly feel overwhelmed, more emotional, and sad during this period. The mood swings subside once your ovulation is over. 

              7. Abdominal discomfort reduces 

                Most women experience discomfort around the abdomen during the ovulation period. It may be accompanied by light cramps, nausea, bloating, etc. The cramps are caused by the rupturing of the ovarian follicles. The discomfort around the abdomen goes away after the ovulatory period. 

                8. OP kits (Ovulation predictor kits)

                  With the help of an OP kit, you can track the level of Luteinizing hormone in your body. A fall in the level of LH is an indication that ovulation has occurred. 

                  9. Progesterone rise 

                    The progesterone level will be the highest 6-8 days after ovulation. You can test the progesterone level in the body during this time, and if it shows a high level, you can confirm that ovulation has taken place. 

                    Also Read:Does Ovulation Make You Tired? Understanding The Facts!

                    Conclusion 

                    A great part of a woman’s life is spent by calculating her menstrual cycle, be it to track her periods, planning for a baby, or planning to avoid pregnancy. Tracking the ovulation period is quintessential in doing all of these. If you are trying to conceive, the ovulation window is the best time to have intercourse.

                    Although you can check if your ovulation is over by testing the hormone levels, it can also be done by checking out the signs that the body gives. Changes in basal body temperature, changes in the consistency of cervical mucus, reduced mood swings, changes in the position of the cervix, etc are some of the signs that your ovulation is over. So gear up, listen to your body and follow the signs for  mindful living. 

                    FAQ

                    Can I get pregnant after my ovulation cycle?

                    The sperm can live up to 5 days inside your body. If you have intercourse 5 days before ovulation, you can get pregnant. The egg only survives for 24 hours after being released. So, if you have intercourse after this period, you cannot get pregnant. 

                    How to track your last ovulation?

                    Ovulation normally happens 14-15 days before your period. By testing your basal body temperature and cervical mucus, you get a pretty good picture of your ovulation cycle. 

                    How do I know if I am not ovulating anymore?

                    If you stopped getting your periods, without getting periods, it could be a sign of anovulation. The lack of clear and thin cervical mucus is also an indication that you are not ovulating. 

                    How to make sure that you have ovulated?

                    Testing for progesterone is a safe method to ensure that you have ovulated. After ovulation, your progesterone levels will be high to prepare the uterus for implantation of the potential zygote. You can test progesterone level with a test kit in the comfort of your home. 

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