Ovulation lasts for 12 to 48 hours.
You’re actually fertile for up to 7 days, and maybe up to 10 days.
The man goo, the sperm can survive up to 5 days in the female reproductive tract.
So you’ve decided that you want a baby and the one question which all hopeful parents have is, “How long is this egg of mine open for business?”
Ovulation is a tricky thing for most couples because unless you are really paying attention you can easily miss the signs that it’s even happening (although some mothers can physically feel themselves ovulating, which is both a wonder and a touch creepy).
We are going to uncover this mystery and a bit more in this post today.
Table Of Contents
What Exactly Is Ovulation?
Experts in the medical field have found that even before we are born, one to two million oocytes (or “eggs” as we all tend to call them because… really… “oocyte”? Not even sure how to pronounce that one) are distributed amongst a woman’s two ovaries.
These eggs are immature, but they will eventually mature.
[Read more: When Do You Ovulate]
Most women have one egg mature per month, though depending on your biological makeup, medications you may be on and a host of other factors, this may vary.
As soon as that egg reaches maturity, the ovary kicks it out of the house.
The egg then enjoys a slip-and-slide ride down the fallopian tube near the uterus where it then waits to be inseminated by a champion sperm.
Video by: IntermountainMoms
Your Period: The End Of The Egg
During ovulation, the lining of your uterus has thickened so that it can support this newly fertilized egg.
If conception is no Bueno, then the uterine lining, the egg, and blood are shed.
How Long Does Ovulation Last?
Couples have a finite amount of time each month to try and become pregnant.
Some medical experts believe that the egg is only viable for 12 hours while others argue 24 hours.
Either way, if you are ovulating or think that you will be some time soon and want to get pregnant, now is time to get bizz-ay.
Signs You’re Primed And Ready For Baby Makin’
For most women, the ovulation cycle occurs at the halfway point of your menstrual cycle.
The “average” cycle is around 28 days, meaning that from the first day of your period (day 1) you would ovulate on day 14.
But we all know that the “average” varies from woman to woman, so basically look for the halfway point between your typical cycle.
This is when you may raise your hand and say, “But my cycle isn’t typical!”
You’re not alone.
If you’re in the same boat as most of us ladies, this is how you can keep track of when you are ovulating:
#1. Have any strange period-like cramps though menstruation is at least a week or two away. This may be a sign that you are ovulating.
Our female bodies are fantastic at sending biological “memos” our way, so if you feel a twinge or a series of cramps in your lower abdominals, you are probably ovulating.
[Read more: Fertility Window]
Or you have gas. You’ll figure that one out soon enough.
#2. Check your panties. See milky white discharge in your panties when you go pee?
Signs are you are ovulating (or it can be a sign of early pregnancy – congrats!).
This discharge will be stretchier and thicker than the other fun substances we encounter on the monthly.
#3. Check your cervix. This is for the die-hard ovulation seekers.
At the beginning of your cycle, your cervix is hard, low and closed. When you’re primed for fertilization, however, that cervix softens up, opens up and becomes more accommodating.
You can check your cervix every day by inserting one or two fingers into your vagina (Pro tip: Buy lube).
#4. Buy an ovulation test (or more). There are a load of bulk ovulation tests available on Amazon which you can stock up on to check when your body is in its most ripe condition
To Bang Or Not To Bang?
Women and their lovers want to understand how ovulation occurs and works for one of two reasons:
a) To get pregnant; or
b) To avoid getting pregnant
The most common mistake which partners falling into either category make is when they should have sex.
The female egg is dainty, fragile and temperate in comparison to male sperm.
An egg may only last upwards of 24 hours, but sperm can hang around in your vaginal bar and lounge and chat with his few surviving “broskis” for anywhere from 3 to 5 days until the egg makes her much-anticipated entrance.
image source: TotalBeauty
So if you want to get pregnant, feel free to get on it a few days before to increase your chances of making your newest addition.
If you want to avoid pregnancy, steer clear before there are any signs of ovulation or you may have a bit of a surprise in the next few weeks.
Ovulation May Be Short, But The Opportunity Is Longer
Ovulation may last only 12 to 24 hours, but:
- If you track it, you’ll stay on top of it
- Sperm lives anywhere from 3 to 5 days, giving you a greater opportunity to pro-create than you may think
- Healthy couples in their 20s and early 30s have a 20% chance of a pregnancy of each month. It takes most couples three to six months to become pregnant.
Have a story or a question about ovulation and pregnancy? Feel free to share it with us below!