How to Chart Your Menstrual Cycle
The same hormones that control your menstrual cycle also affect the mucus that your cervix makes. Just before and during ovulation, the amount, color, and texture of it changes to make it easier for you to get pregnant.
As your ovaries prepare to release an egg, your cervix makes more mucus. A few days before ovulation, it may be sticky and cloudy or whitish. Then, right before you ovulate, the mucus gets slippery, like egg whites. It may stretch across your fingers if you spread them apart. This stage usually lasts 3 or 4 days, which is when you’re most likely to get pregnant.
How to check your cervical mucus:
- Use your fingers or a tissue to check the opening of your vagina for mucus a few times a day. (Make sure your hands are clean before you start.) Write down whether it’s cloudy and sticky or clear and slippery.
- Try charting your cervical mucus along with your basal body temperature to get a clearer picture of where you are in your cycle.
- Keep in mind that other things, like breastfeeding or using douches or other hygiene products, can change your mucus. Gynecologists usually don’t recommend these products anyway.