The best time to get pregnant is at the most fertile point in your menstrual cycle. Your 'fertile window' includes five days prior to ovulation and the day of ovulation.
The two days before you ovulate and the day of ovulation have the
During ovulation, your ovary releases a mature egg. That egg makes its way down the fallopian tube on its way to your uterus.
On this route, the sperm will (hopefully) meet up with and fertilize the egg. Sperm can live for about five days. So if you're trying to conceive, your goal is to have live sperm in your Fallopian tubes when you ovulate.
How do you know you're ovulating? One way is to count your cycle days.
Keep a calendar of your menstrual cycles or use an app to keep track. Each cycle starts on the first day of your period, and ends on the day before your next period starts.
Look for the midpoint of your cycle. If you have a 28-day cycle, you'll generally ovulate around day 14.
You can also look for signs like these, which indicate ovulation:
- Change in vaginal discharge. When you ovulate, your mucus will turn clear and thick - about the consistency of an egg white.
- Rise in basal body temperature (BBT). Your body's resting temperature will increase slightly after you ovulate. You can measure BBT with a basal body temperature thermometer before you get up in the morning. Note: This will only tell you that you ovulated and cannot predict ovulation. However, if you track your temperature for a few cycles, you can see in hindsight what cycle day you generally ovulate.
Drugstores also sell over-the-counter ovulation kits. These tests look for hormone changes in your urine, and can let you know when you're most likely to be ovulating. Refer to the test kit instructions for more information.