Conceiving a child, for many people, is one of life’s greatest achievements and also one of life’s greatest responsibilities. These people want to plan the conception of their child so that they are ready financially and mentally to raise a child and so they employ the se of an ovulation calendar. Others may find that they have a difficult time conceiving and using planning tools such as ovulation calendars and calculators will help them know when they are the most fertile. Understanding these two and which one is most accurate is an important step in conceiving quickly.
One of the first things that people who are considering using an ovulation calendar or calculator will find is that there are different schools of thought on whether a one month or a three month calendar is more accurate, as accuracy is the key to conception. The following information is presented to assist in choosing between the two and moving forward with conceiving a baby.
An Overview of Ovulation Calendars
The concept behind and ovulation calendar or calculator is determining which days of the month a woman is most fertile. Fertility is based on ovulation or the releasing of the egg. During this time, becoming pregnant is much easier, if every other factor is in place. The peak period for fertility is the exact day that the ovaries release and egg and the lifespan of that egg, typically 12 to 24 hours.
Ovulation calendars are based on the menses cycle. There are several time frames during the month that are taken into account when determining fertility. These are:
- Cycle Length: This is the length of time that the woman is in menstruation. Practically all women have an idea of how long they are in menstruation; however, calendaring will give a much more accurate representation. This will also help get a better understanding of how often the body is menstruating as not every woman has a 28-day cycle, the length that is often considered the norm. Finding the cycle length is as simple as counting the days from the first day that a period starts up until the day before the next period starts. This is why a calendar is helpful in finding out how many days are in the cycle.
- The Luteal Phase: This phase is the actual number of days between ovulation and menses. In order to find out when this phase is, it is necessary to use either fertility charting or kits designed to predict fertility. Most women have a 12 to 16 day luteal phase. The good news is that this phase does not tend to vary – if the luteal phase one month is 13 days, then it will remain 13 days for every cycle.
- Regularity of Cycles: A regular cycle is important in predicting fertility. Regular cycles are those that do not vary by more than three days. Cycles that vary by five or more days should be considered irregular and more difficult when it comes to predicting fertility.
These three phase or numbers are the important numbers in determining ovulation. The key is having accuracy in these numbers. This is where the debate over a one-month calendar and a three-month calendar becomes evident.
The numbers taken from the three phases are used to determine ovulation as follows. The length of the luteal phase is subtracted from the length of the cycle and two or three days are added before and after this to come up with the days that ovulation should be occurring. So, if a cycle is 28 days and the luteal phase is 13 days, ovulation should occur on day 15 and adding three days before would be day 10 and three days after would be day 16. This would mean that the most fertile period would be days 10 through 16. This does not mean the 10th day of the month, but the 10th day of the cycle, or ten days from day one of menses.
Understanding this makes it simple to see why a three-month calendar would be more accurate than a one-month calendar. One month is going to be a very narrow view of what the body is doing. This does not take into account that the body may not do the same thing every month; however, a three month calendar gives a much broader period and allows for an average that will be more accurate and accuracy is key to conception.
There are many online ovulation calculators and calendars that can be put to use in order to help find the most fertile time of the month for conception. These are available in both one and three month versions; the choice is a personal decision. However, if accuracy is the most important feature, then a three month calendar is the best choice.