Ovulation Prediction and Basal Body Temperature

BBT - or Basal Body Temperature Charting - allows you to predict ovulation based on charting changes in your body temperature throughout your menstrual cycle using a special thermometer called a "basal" thermometer.

 

Basal Body Temperature and Ovulation Prediction

One of the many changes that take place in a woman's body during her menstrual cycle is an increase in body temperature at the onset of ovulation. During the first the first part of a woman's cycle, the body temperature is lower. With ovulation, the body temperature rises (to create a more fertile environment for the fertilized egg) and remains higher until the beginning of a woman's next cycle.

Recording each day's body temperature - and charting the patterns of temperature change - will help pinpoint when when ovulation has occurred.

What is basal body temperature? Basal body temperature (or BBT) is the temperature of the body at rest. The BBT method requires charting your basal - think 'base' - body temperature when you're completely at rest. For most women, 96 to 98 degrees is considered normal prior to ovulation and 97 to 99 degrees after ovulation. By charting the differences - in one-tenth degree increments - you can determine when ovulation has taken place.

How to take your Basal Body Temperature

Your Basal Body Temperature can be taken orally with a special BBT thermometer. Ideally, a larger thermometer that registers from 96 to 100 degrees (in easy-to-read one-tenth degree increments) is recommended. Digital thermometers are also available. Remember, you are attempting to discern as little as a two-tenths of a degree of difference in temperature, so selecting a quality thermometer and following directions are crucial.

Important: Your BBT temperature refers to a 'resting' or 'base' temperature. That means that your BBT must be measured prior to any physical activity, after at least three to four hours of sleep. Make sure that you read thermometer directions - and if you have any questions or unique considerations, consult your physician.

1. Taking Your BBT Temperature
Take your BBT temperature first thing each morning - as soon as you wake up. It is recommended that you remain in bed (as any physical activity can increase your resting temperature), as well as avoid eating or drinking. Coffee can wait! Either insert the thermometer in your mouth - or alternatively your rectum - and wait five minutes. Read the temperature to within 1/10 of a degree and record the reading.

2. Charting Your BBT Temperature
Starting on day one of your menstrual cycle - the first day of your period - begin recording your BBT temperature using a calendar or notebook and graph paper. Each morning, record your temperature. Plot each day's BBT on the graph. Your temperature rise may be sudden, gradual, or in steps. The pattern may vary from cycle to cycle.

3. Predicting Ovulation
For most women, 96 to 98 degrees is considered normal prior to ovulation and 97 to 99 degrees after ovulation. By charting the differences - in one-tenth degree increments - you can determine when ovulation has taken place. Typically a rise of at least 0.4 to 0.6 degrees will take place at ovulation, though for different women the temperature increases may be sudden or gradual.

 

In selecting a basal thermometer, we recommend using a specially designed digital thermometer (that reads two digits after the decimal, e.g., 97.75) or a newer glass thermometer that does not contain mercury. Mercury thermometers are being phased out, do to environmental issues, so if you select a glass bbt, make sure its a mercury-free basal thermometer.

Part II
Frequently Asked Questions and BBT Limitations

 

Comments

Hey guys.
Iv only recently tried getting pregnant and im using the BBT thermometer, but mine come's up in for example (36.04) not (97.04) if use get what i mean? please help?

JMe and my husbon is trying. To hv a baby I already. Hv two frm pervious realationship.and really want another baby!and I still cant figure out this basal themoeter.the higher it goes is tht good?But I hear a lot of conflicting info.first some

hi ladies. I am breastfeeding and have not gotten my perioid yet. Our child is 11 months. We are trying for another. But because my period has not returned, it is hard to determine when I am ovulating because most calculations call for the last day of your period. Any suggestions, tips, similar experiences? Thanks in advance.

I have charted my temperature for about three years. After ovulation your temperature will rise. If you are pregnant, your temperature will rise normally after ovulation, then spike higher than usual towards the end of your cycle. if your temperature remains spiked for 17 days, you are probably pregnant. Look for that as a sure sign that you could be pregnant.

Hmm....when I was using basal temps to get pregnant, my doctor told me to watch for the DROP in my temp, and that once it went back UP it was too late. Indeed, if I look back on my chart, I conceived when the temp was going down.

Hmm....when I was using basal temps to get pregnant, my doctor told me to watch for the DROP in my temp, and that once it went back UP it was too late. Indeed, if I look back on my chart, I conceived when the temp was going down.

hey i got a question, my last day of my period was jan. 3, and me any my hubby have had intercourse everyday since, at about a week after my period my breasts became sore and a vein popped out of my left breast im extremely hungry and very tired, could i be pregnant?

I have 2 prevoius kids and my husband and i are ttc a 3rd time, what i notice is that when ur pregnant u do have signs that are similar to pms , but they should not be as pronuced as they are like when u will get your period also your body temp will stay high even on the day of your expected period, ur uteras doesnt get very bloated when ur pregnant only will you get your period however if this is your first pregnancy you may get a really bad bacache i remember that with first pregnancy, check your cervix through out the month if it stays puckered out all month like, likely your pregnant,

Hi.. My temperature is higher than normal all the time but i had a light period of 1 day this time at the expected period date.. HPT is -ve after bleeding.. I have bloating and feeling heavy in uterus.. Plz tell me am i pregnant?

I am also taking my BBT and it went up on day ten and was also up on day eleven, but only by one degree, it's usually 96.9 and it was 97.6-97.7, my cycle is 31days(according to my last period) so I thought I should ovulate between day 9-11 and haven't yet! Sad So please help out! No one else is and I want a baby more than my life!

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Ovulation Calculator

Format: 10/23/2014
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By TTC veteran and mother of two, Elizabeth Andrews.