How Long Will I Ovulate?



On the average, a woman will ovulate for about one day each month during her menstrual cycle.  For some women, this may be slightly shorter or longer, but the average amount of time that you will ovulate will be right around one day.  Having said that, it is important to understand how exactly ovulation works, in relation to conception.  The fact of the matter is that, while you will only ovulate for about 24 hours, the period of time that you are actually fertile is more like 5 or 6 days.

After sexual intercourse, once the sperm are in a woman’s body, they can survive for as many as five days afterwards.  This means that, while you may not actually ovulate until perhaps around the 14th day of your menstrual cycle, you can become pregnant from sexual intercourse that occurs any time after the 9th day of your menstrual cycle.  When you add these 5 days to the actual day that you ovulate, you are looking at roughly six days each month when it would be possible for you to conceive.  For this reason, it is important not only to understand how long you do ovulate, but also how to know when you ovulate.

There are several ways you might be able to use to know when you are ovulating.  Many women have had success knowing when they ovulate by tracking changes to the cervical mucus produced during the various parts of their monthly cycle.  Other women have been able to figure out when they ovulate by using their Basal Body Temperature, and tracking the increase in Basal Body Temperature that typically occurs right after ovulation.  In addition to these methods, there are Ovulation Predictor Kits available for purchase that may also help you to know when exactly it is that you ovulate.





Knowing when and how long you ovulate can be useful.  If you are trying to conceive, for example, you greatly increase your chances of becoming pregnant if you time intercourse just before you start to ovulate.  Some couples, who prefer natural methods of birth control such as the rhythm method, may also benefit from knowing exactly when the woman is going to be ovulating.


Last modified: February 10, 2013

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