Ovulation occurs when an egg is released from one of your ovaries and travels through the fallopian tubes to await fertilization. On average, the egg will live approximately 12-24 hours awaiting fertilization from sperm. If conception doesn’t occur, the unfertilized egg, uterine lining, and additional blood will be shed during menstruation. If conception does occur, the egg will implant in the uterine wall within about 6-12 days.
Understanding ovulation is very important if you are trying to conceive. Here are a few common myths and misconceptions.
A Woman Can Get Pregnant Only One Day During Her Cycle. It is true that ovulation (meaning the dropping of one or more eggs) generally only occurs on one day of the cycle, but a woman can actually get pregnant from having had intercourse 4-5 days before ovulation occurs. The reason for this is that sperm can live for up to 5 days in a healthy reproductive tract.
A Normal Menstrual Cycle is 28 Days, and Ovulation Occurs on Day 14 of the Cycle. The reality is that every woman’s cycle is different, and generally ranges from 24-36 days. Ovulation days can also depend on the woman and can occur many days before or after the 14th day of her cycle. You will not necessarily be fertile on the 14th day of your cycle. Fertility Charting, and the use of ovulation microscopes and other predictor devices are recommended to test for your window of fertility.
Women Can Ovulate More Than once During Her Cycle. This is not true. Ovulation only occurs once during the cycle of a healthy woman. It is true that more than one egg may be released during ovulation, but this almost always occurs within 24 hours of each other.
Women Ovulate on the Same Day Each Month. While most women ovulate towards the middle of their cycle, the actual day can change month to month, even in women with regular cycles. This is one reason that tracking for ovulation is so important!