How Many Days After Ovulation Can You Get Pregnant: What to Know

Can you get pregnant the day after ovulation? Our guide will go over when a woman's fertile window is so couples can give themselves the best chance of conceiving.

The Promescent Team
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by The Promescent Team Last updated 12/11/2023
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can you get pregnant after ovulation

Getting pregnant involves understanding what occurs during ovulation and knowing how to predict the ovulation cycle.

Ovulation happens when a mature egg is released from one of your ovaries, and the body is prepared to receive sperm for fertilization.

Quick FAQs

It's possible to get pregnant within 24 hours of ovulation. After this time, the egg will disintegrate into the uterine lining.

Ovulation can last anywhere between 12 to 24 hours.

A few ways you can increase your chances of conceiving include changing what you eat, de-stressing, and having sex around the time of ovulation.

On average, ovulation occurs near the 14th day of your 28-day cycle. But for most women with a 28-day cycle, ovulation can happen on any day between the 11th and 21st day. This period of time is referred to as your fertile window.

Let's look more closely at the fertile window so you'll know when you're most fertile and how to predict ovulation better.

How many days after ovulation can you get pregnant?

The egg must be fertilized within 12 to 24 hours after ovulation for pregnancy to occur. If fertilization does not occur, the egg disintegrates into the uterine lining.

Having sex before ovulation allows the sperm to be ready and waiting for the egg's release. Sperm remains viable for up to five days.

According to older research, the most optimal days to conceive are the day before and the day of ovulation. The chances of getting pregnant drop one-day post ovulation.

  • Three days before ovulation - 27%
  • Two days before ovulation - 33%
  • One day before ovulation - 41%
  • The day of ovulation - 20%
  • One day post ovulation - 8%

Waiting too late in your ovulation cycle to try can hurt your chances of getting pregnant.

How long does ovulation last?

The fertile window is around six days for the average woman. Ovulation itself only lasts 12 to 24 hours. This short period of time makes it critical for couples to have sex prior to ovulation.

How to know when you're ovulating

While the time can vary, ovulation happens halfway through a typical 28-day cycle. But there are methods of tracking ovulation so that you don't just have to guess which day you're most fertile.

No method of tracking ovulation is perfect, and other factors, such as age and menstrual cycle regularity, can affect predicting ovulation.

Cervical mucus monitoring

Monitoring changes in vaginal discharge is one of the oldest ways to track ovulation, and it doesn't cost a thing.

When estrogen rises, your body creates a sperm-friendly cervical mucus that is clear and stretchy, sort of like egg whites.

The vaginal discharge will start to become cloudy, thicker, or disappear completely after ovulation.

It's important to note that dehydration can impact the body's production of cervical mucus.

Body temperature changes

Your basal body temperature (BBT) is the temperature that your body is at when at rest.

Checking and charting your BBT for a few months will help you better predict ovulation. You will use a digital oral thermometer or one that is designed to take basal body temperature every morning when you wake up.

Recording body temperature changes using a graph or spreadsheet will help you learn a pattern. The spikes in temp typically happen 2 to 3 days before ovulation.

Breast Tenderness

Most breast pain that women experience is due to the menstrual cycle. Some start to have discomfort or pain around ovulation, too.

Tender breasts or achy nipples are caused by a rush of hormones entering the body before and following ovulation.

Well-fitted bras, cold and hot compresses, and OTC anti-inflammatory medication like ibuprofen and naproxen can help alleviate sore breasts.

Abdominal cramps

One-sided lower abdominal pain is often connected to ovulation. The cycle-specific abdominal cramps are also referred to as Mittelschmerz, which means middle pain.

Some women experience abdominal pain during ovulation when the ovary releases the egg.

Discuss with your personal physician if the pain persists. Lower one-side stomach pain not associated with the ovulation cycle can be a sign of endometriosis and ovarian cysts.

Increased sex drive

Some studies show that women notice a change in sex drive right before and after the ovulation cycle.

The increase in libido is because there's an increase in estrogen and LH that boost sex drive.

Ovulation calculators and kits

Technology has made it possible to track ovulation better using calendar-based apps, ovulation calculator websites, and over-the-counter (OTC) home ovulation predictor kits.

If you use an at-home kit, you will use it a few days before predicted ovulation. A positive result means that the egg will be relased within 24 to 36 hours.

A doctor can order a blood test to check progesterone levels to detect ovulation in women with irregular periods.

How do you know if you conceive after ovulation?

The best way to know if you're pregnant after ovulation is to wait until your next skipped period. Some early pregnancy symptoms include:

  • no menstrual cycle
  • abdominal or pelvic pain
  • nausea
  • vaginal discharge
  • UTI symptoms
  • dizziness
  • fatigue

Contact a healthcare provider if you take a pregnancy test and it comes back negative but the symptoms persist.

Tips for conceiving

Simple changes in what you eat, how much you exercise, and getting enough sleep can boost your chances of conceiving.

1. Have sex near the time of ovulation.

Planning sex doesn't necessarily feel sexy, but it’s important to do it within the time that is optimal for getting pregnant.

Sperm lives up to five days, so you can get a head start by having sex five days before ovulation and then on the day to increase the chances a bit more.

2. Live a healthy lifestyle

Adopting a healthy lifestyle is one of the best ways to increase your chances of conceiving. Here are a few tips to keep in mind:

  • Healthy diet: A nutritional approach to conceiving includes whole grains, vegetables, fruit, full-fat dairy, and fish.
  • Get enough sleep: Research shows that women that get less than 7 hours of sleep are less likely to conceive.
  • Maintain a healthy weight: Studies show that both being overweight and underweight can negatively affect fertility.
  • Exercise: Fertility specialists recommend moderate exercise such as walking, swimming, and cycling to decrease chances of infertility.
  • Vitamins and supplements: Folic acids, zinc, and essential vitamins and minerals are crucial when boosting fertility. Supplements such as Fertility Support for Her can help fill in the nutritional gaps.
  • Stop bad habits: Smoking, excessive drinking, and recreational drugs can stop you from conceiving during the ovulation cycle.

3. De-stress

While trying to get pregnant can be stressful, embracing relaxation is one way to increase the chances of conceiving.

Mindfulness, meditation, and yoga are simple ways to take a breath and de-stress. These activities may also help to relieve the symptoms of ovulation.

Takeaways

Ovulation typically happens on the 14th day of a woman's 28-day cycle. The ovulation cycle, or fertile window, only lasts 12 to 24 hours.

You have ways that you can track ovulation, such as monitoring cervical mucus and tracking body temperature changes.

Remember that ovulation does have some physical symptoms, including breast tenderness and one-sided lower abdominal cramps. And you may experience an increased sex drive while ovulating.

Over-the-counter ovulation predictor kits and ovulation tracking apps and websites give women an easy way to track ovulation without having to get a blood test.

A healthy lifestyle is vital when trying to get pregnant. Be sure to eat healthy, engage in physical activity, and practice relaxation to boost your fertility.

The Promescent Team

The Promescent Team

Our team has over a decade of experience in the sexual wellness field and are experts in sexual dysfunctions, like premature ejaculation. We help couples and individuals better understand treatment options available for different types of sexual needs and educate the public on all things related to intimacy. All of our authored content is medically reviewed for accuracy and reliability.

Sources:

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The Content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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