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Cervical Mucus Ovulation Changes

Written by Elizabeth Buescher, Gynecologist

There are unique changes in the cervical mucus that obviously indicate that a person is ovulation. Along with other ovulation symptoms, such as pain on one side of the pelvis when the egg is released, there are cervical mucus changes that indicate signs of ovulation. When ovulation occurs, ideally the mucus should be stringy and stretchy; it should stretch at least a few inches between your index finger and forefinger.

This cervical mucus change is one of the obvious ovulation signs that indicate the sperm will have an easier passage up the birth canal, into the uterus and into the fallopian tubes for fertilization. If you have no cervical mucus when ovulating, the sperm have no “highway” to travel on and fertilization will be much harder.

Can you ovulate without cervical mucus? Certainly ovulation is possible; however, fertilization of the released egg will be very difficult without the presence of watery, egg white-like cervical mucus at the time of ovulation.

Cervical Mucus Ovulation Changes

The stringy, stretchy and clear cervical mucus occurring during ovulation only lasts for a couple of days. Then the egg will have been released and progesterone is made by the egg follicle on the ovary and, post ovulation, the mucus will change from clear and stretchy to thick and a little bit grainy or creamy. Knowing the ovulation stages can help you get pregnant and can help prevent a pregnancy. For example, if you are trying to get pregnant, your most fertile day is the ovulation day. The sperm has the perfect medium to travel in and fertilizing the egg becomes much easier.

If, on the other hand, you don’t want to get pregnant, you will have to refrain from sex while ovulating or use condoms. Remember that when you are trying not to become pregnant that sperm can survive in the vaginal milieu for up to five days before ovulation day (which usually comes at around the 14th day after the onset of the menstrual period) so you should make sure to use condoms or other barrier forms of contraception, starting at day 9 of the cycle. It only takes one sperm to ovulate an egg so if you are constantly introducing sperm into the vagina during days 9-15 of the cycle, it is possible to get pregnant.

Cervical Mucus during Ovulation

The rhythm method of birth control requires you to have intimate knowledge of what’s going on with the cervical mucus during ovulation. When the cervical mucus changes from creamy white mucus to the stringy, stretchy, egg-white form of cervical mucus, this means that the LH surge from your uterus has stimulated the release of an egg that will pass through the fallopian tube in order to be fertilized by sperm that have easily traveled there because of the character of the cervical mucus.

Once this happens, the hormone progesterone takes over and the pregnancy and the living embryo will be supported until transplantation time, which the placental cells begin to make their own estrogen and progesterone to continue to support the pregnancy.

Cervical Mucus and Ovulation

Sometimes the change in cervical mucus is the only significant change you will notice at the time of ovulation. When you are checking your cervical mucus throughout the menstrual cycle, consider what hormones are being activated at any given point in time. The creamy vaginal discharge before ovulation will indicate that estrogen is elevating and is trying to build up the lining of the uterus, should a fertilization and implantation be necessary.

After the ovulation has happened and the stringy, stretchy vaginal discharge depletes, it will be replaced by a stickier and thicker vaginal discharge, indicating progesterone dominance. At his time, the uterine lining is “maturing” and will be able to attach the zygote to the lining of the uterus.

How to increase cervical mucus during ovulation?

The cervical mucus change that happens during ovulation is very important. Without it, the sperm has no way to get to the egg to be fertilized. Some women have this change in cervical mucus but do not make enough to have optimal fertility. It means you should be well hydrated while ovulation is occurring because the ovulation mucus is water soluble and needs to be plentiful. Some natural supplements are available that will help you increase cervical mucus during ovulation. The more cervical mucus there is, the better is the chance of having a sperm reach the waiting egg.