Did I Ovulate or Not? 7 Signs Ovulation is Over
If you are trying to conceive (TTC), knowing exactly when you will ovulate is a key first step in your pregnancy journey. This brief window of time around ovulation is when you are considered to be at “peak” fertility – meaning you should aim to have sex with your partner during this time in order to maximize your chances of becoming pregnant.
If you have been monitoring your fertility for a while, you may already be comfortable with anticipating when this fertile window will occur. However, you may not quite know for sure how to tell when it’s over.
To help, here’s a look at the most common signs that ovulation is complete, along with an overview of tried and true methods for predicting and confirming ovulation. We’ll close this article by discussing ways that Mira can help you monitor your fertility hormones in order to accurately predict and confirm ovulation.
Signs Ovulation Is Over
From checking the consistency of your cervical mucus to noticeable changes in your libido, here are seven signs that ovulation is over.
Changes in the Consistency of Cervical Mucus
Throughout most of the month, your cervical mucus is thick and creamy, appearing as a white or whitish-yellow color. However, when you are ovulating, your cervical mucus becomes clear and slippery, much like the consistency of an egg white.
When you are done ovulating, you will see a shift in your cervical mucus from this slippery consistency back to the thick, creamy consistency of before. Using a tracking tool like the Mira App’s advanced calendar can help you get in touch with the consistency of your cervical mucus to better recognize when ovulation begins and ends.
Changes in Basal Body Temperature (BBT)
One of the most surefire ways to know if you’ve ovulated is to track your Basal Body Temperature, or BBT, each day before getting out of bed. As ovulation happens, changing hormone levels lead to a spike in body temperature.
You are most fertile during the 2-3 days before your temperature peaks. By the time you watch your temperature hit its peak, it’s likely too late to conceive and your ovulation is likely over. Recording your temperature every day with a basal thermometer will help you recognize the patterns in your body temperature before your next cycle, so you can increase your chance of getting pregnant next month.
Changes in Urine Hormone Concentration
You probably know that your hormones fluctuate throughout the menstrual cycle, but did you know you can measure these changes through your urine? If you aren’t yet a Mira user, here’s a bit about how our tracking tool works: first, immerse the test wand into urine for 10 seconds. Then, insert the test wand into Mira. Through the Mira App on your smartphone, you can view the concentration of hormones in your urine to help you analyze your fertility.
24 to 36 hours prior to ovulation, you should see a surge in luteinizing hormone, which triggers the release of an egg. After ovulation is over, both luteinizing hormone and estrogen levels decrease. Mira can track all of these changes through your urine to help you recognize when ovulation begins and ends and increase your chance of getting pregnant.
Changes in the Position of the Cervix
While you are ovulating, you may find that your cervix becomes higher, softer and more open in order to prepare to accept the sperm. After ovulation is over, your cervix will feel harder, like touching the tip of your nose.
If you feel comfortable, you can use a finger to gently check your cervix for changes prior to and following ovulation. You can do so by standing in whatever position you use to put in a tampon and inserting a finger to feel for your cervix. The Mira App’s advanced calendar can help you keep track of changes you feel surrounding ovulation to help you better predict ovulation during your next menstrual cycle.
Changes in Libido
Many women experience changes in libido, or sex drive, throughout the menstrual cycle. You may find that you are most interested in sex when you are most fertile during the 5 or so days surrounding ovulation. This is Mother Nature’s way of ensuring the continuation of the species by encouraging you to have sex when you have the greatest chance of getting pregnant!
If you are someone who notices an increase in libido around ovulation, then a decrease in libido shortly after may signify that ovulation has come and gone. We recommend using a tool like the Mira App’s advanced calendar to keep track of your libido if you would like to use libido to estimate when you are ovulating.
Change in Abdominal Pain
Many women may experience lower abdominal pain or light cramping around ovulation. This mid-cycle pain is often referred to as “mittelschmerz” (German for “middle pain”), and it can either be a brief twinge for a few minutes or it may last a few hours. It may also be accompanied by nausea, particularly in cases where the pain is severe.
Once any cramping or pain has subsided, this may indicate that ovulation is complete. However, note that not all women experience or even notice this mid-cycle pain. Therefore, changes in abdominal pain may not be the most reliable sign that ovulation is over.
Change in Breast Tenderness
Once ovulation occurs, the luteal phase of your menstrual cycle can then begin. During this phase, it is common for many women to experience the typical luteal phase symptoms, such as headaches, fatigue, nausea, and muscle pain. Alongside these symptoms, it is also common for the breasts to feel swollen, sensitive, and tender to the touch.
These symptoms are caused by changing hormone levels, specifically estrogen and progesterone. They typically begin after ovulation has happened and can continue until your next period. Therefore, if you do notice a change in breast tenderness mid-cycle, this could be a sign that ovulation has already occurred.
Understanding Your Fertile Window
There are more precise methods for predicting your fertile window beyond understanding the signs and symptoms of ovulation.
How do you know when you’re ovulating?
The best way to know for sure if you are ovulating or not is through hormone tracking and testing. This is the most reliable way to predict when your fertile window will be.
When it comes to predicting ovulation, the two most important hormones to monitor are the luteinizing hormone (often referred to as LH), and estrogen. That’s because LH levels experience a significant rise approximately 24-36 hours before ovulation, and estrogen levels rise approximately 1-3 days before the surge in LH.
To monitor these hormone levels regularly, the best solution is to use a hormone tracker like Mira. Ovulation prediction kits (often called OPK’s) can also be useful, however, they do not offer personalized results and are prone to false positives and false negatives.
Alternatively, you can also have a transvaginal ultrasound at your doctor’s office. Your doctor can then examine your ovaries and give an estimation of when ovulation may occur. While having an ultrasound can give you an accurate idea of when you may ovulate, scheduling multiple visits to your doctor’s office can become expensive and inconvenient.
How do you know when ovulation is over?
Hormone tracking and testing can also be used to confirm that ovulation has occurred. That’s because once ovulation is over, estrogen and LH levels will decrease dramatically. At the same time, the hormone progesterone will also gradually increase.
To confirm that ovulation is over, you can test for the presence of progesterone approximately 6-8 days after your estimated day of ovulation. This is when your progesterone levels will be at their highest, and elevated progesterone levels are an indicator that ovulation was successful.
Hormone trackers like Mira are the best way to monitor your progesterone levels at home consistently. There are ovulation confirmation kits available, however, these tests cannot give you your numeric progesterone level.
How to Monitor and Track Your Ovulation
To begin monitoring and tracking ovulation with Mira, you should first make to have all the following:
- Mira Analyzer
- Mira App
- Fertility Plus Wands
- Confirm Wands
Once you have all of the above ready to go, you can now start testing! Simply take a urine sample, dip a testing wand in the sample, and insert it into the analyzer. You will then be given your exact levels of LH (Luteinizing Hormone) and E3G (Estradiol Metabolite in urine). The Mira app will then use its advanced algorithm to provide you with personalized information about when you are likely to ovulate.
If you have been tracking ovulation closely and want to confirm that ovulation has happened, you can then use a Mira confirm wand to test for the presence of PdG (the metabolite of progesterone in urine).
Before starting your Mira journey, here are a few things to bear in mind:
- You should expect to test no later than the sixth day of your cycle, and aim to test every day. Depending on the length of your cycle, you may use approximately 10-20 wands per cycle.
- Fertility Plus wands can be used to test for the presence of LH and E3G, while Fertility Confirm wands are only used to test for the presence of PdG.
- To get the most accurate results, try to test consistently at the same time each day.
- Prior to testing, make sure to limit your fluid intake 2 hours before your test (this is why many women prefer to test first thing in the morning.)
- After consistent testing, Mira can begin to provide you with the most accurate insights necessary to track, predict, and confirm ovulation.
Why use Mira?
Mira is the first-ever hormone tracking system that can give you personalized insights regarding your fertility. Here’s what sets it apart from other fertility monitoring solutions out there.
Receive lab-quality results
Mira can measure your hormone levels with lab-grade accuracy. Instead of going into your doctor’s office to have your hormones tested, you can now receive lab-quality results in the comfort of your own home.
Know the numeric value of your hormone concentrations
Unlike ovulation predictor kits (OPK’s) that can only give you a yes or no answer, Mira provides you with your exact, real-time numeric hormone levels. This information is then stored in the Mira app, enabling you to monitor your actual hormone levels over time.
Understand your full fertility window
Using its proprietary algorithm, Mira can help you anticipate your fertile window so that you can plan sex accordingly and get pregnant faster. Additionally, if you experience polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), irregular periods, or anovulation, Mira can help you better understand the patterns of your cycle. This enables you to be better prepared to predict ovulation – even through phases of irregularity with ovulation and periods.