6 things everyone should know about ovulation
1) What is ovulation?
Each month, one of your ovaries releases a mature egg, which then goes into one of your fallopian tubes. If fertilized, the egg moves to the uterus and settles into the lining that becomes thick.
The egg only survives for about 12 to 24 hours. If it is not fertilized, you reject this uterine lining (that is, you have your periods). This process that usually takes place once in each menstrual cycle is called ovulation.
2) Ovulation pain: Is it normal?
Ovulation pain, or “mittelschmerz”, is a mid-cycle pain that is felt on the side and occurs around the time of ovulation. It is quite common, can be mild or strong pain that can last from a few minutes to twenty-four hours. It is usually mild and can be effectively relieved with over-the-counter pain medications, but some women experience a higher degree of pain that may require evaluation by a doctor.
There is no definitive answer as to the reason for the pain. Some think it is due to the enlargement of the egg before release, while for others the discomfort is related to the regular bleeding a woman experiences in her ovum during ovulation.
3) Your body does not create new eggs each month
You emit an egg each month. But these eggs are not created monthly, you are born with them. Over the years, the number of eggs in the ovaries decreases. A little girl has about 2 million eggs at birth. By the time she reaches puberty, this number is about 500,000. As ages move, the genetic stability of the eggs decreases. This is why women over 35 are more likely to:
- a miscarriage
- have a child with a genetic disorder
Some cancer treatments can cause permanent infertility in women because eggs are not renewed. If cancer treatments kill eggs in your ovaries, you will not be able to produce new eggs.
4) Your overall health affects ovulation and the first months of your future baby before conception
Although eggs are not renewed each month, they mature, ready for ovulation several weeks before they are released. Before and during this maturation period, your health habits can make a difference in the health of these eggs. In other words, your pre-conception health habits can affect your ability to get pregnant, to keep that pregnancy, and to ensure the health of your future baby.
The diet during preconception can affect your fertility and the baby’s health, which is not yet conceived. One nutrient you need before conception is folic acid. Low levels of folic acid can lead to fertility problems, increased risk of miscarriage and birth defects.
5) Menses do not mean you are ovulating
Some women mistakenly believe that if they are menstruating, they ovulate. This is not true in reality. Women with anovulation or irregular ovulation may have irregular, lighter or shorter cycles than usual periods, or unusually long periods. They can also spend months without having their menses.
It is also possible to have normal periods and not be ovulating. Just because you have your period does not mean that everything is fine with ovulation or your fertility. If your cycle is irregular, talk to your doctor before trying to get pregnant.
6) The fact that you are ovulating does not necessarily mean that you can get pregnant
Ovulation is certainly an essential part of pregnancy, but it takes more than an egg to conceive. The sperm must be able to reach the egg. This means that the fallopian tubes must be unblocked and in good health.
A fertilized embryo needs a place of implantation and development. That means you also need a fertile uterine environment just as you also need healthy sperm to conceive!