If you’re trying to get pregnant, ovulation is probably familiar to you. After all, without ovulation, there’s no egg and without an egg, pregnancy just isn’t possible!
As you started to journey down the path to pregnancy, you likely began to realize how important being in tune with your ovulation is to your success. And while knowing when exactly you’re ovulating is important, did you know that is actually only half of the ovulation picture?
In fact, understanding if you ovulate and how successful it was is another key piece of the pregnancy puzzle. Keep reading to learn more about successful ovulation and why it matters.
Understanding if you're ovulating successfully is another key piece of the pregnancy puzzle.
What is successful ovulation?
Successful ovulation refers to an ovulatory event in which an egg is released and sufficient progesterone levels are produced after ovulation occurs. A truly successful ovulation is necessary for the highest possible chance at pregnancy.
You see, after ovulation occurs and sperm and egg meet, the newly formed embryo must make its journey to the uterus where it will find a comfortable place to implant. Wherever it implants will be where it makes its home for the next 9 months.
In order for an embryo to have the best possible chance of successful implantation, the uterus must be prepared to receive that embryo. We call this “uterine readiness” and basically it refers to whether or not the uterus is “sticky” enough for the embryo to attach and for pregnancy to begin.
Remember our friend, progesterone? This is the hormone that makes the uterus sticky. So, more progesterone means a more “ready” uterus for implantation, whereas less progesterone means it might not be as prepared.
When an ovulation is successful, it means that the ovary produced enough progesterone following ovulation to ensure the uterus will be ready to receive a potential pregnancy.
Why should I care about successful ovulation?
As we now know, successful ovulation is an essential step on the path to pregnancy. A successful ovulation means sufficient progesterone levels are produced after ovulation to allow for a higher chance of pregnancy.
This also means that low progesterone levels after ovulation can make it more difficult to get pregnant. If an ovulation is not successful and progesterone levels aren’t quite where they need to be, then the uterus won’t be ready to receive the pregnancy.
It’s no surprise then that low progesterone is one of the main causes of preventable miscarriage. Often – but not all the time – early miscarriages, usually occurring before week 8 of pregnancy, can be attributed to low progesterone levels and low uterine receptivity.
Science supports this, too. One study found that elevated progesterone metabolite levels in urine during the implantation window following ovulation led to a 92% chance of successful pregnancy, compared to just a 19% chance of successful pregnancy in those with low progesterone metabolite levels.
Another study found that progesterone supplementation given after ovulation occurs but before a positive pregnancy test can prevent 8,500 of miscarriages per year in the United Kingdom alone.
We believe identifying potential problems with ovulation early on a trying to conceive journey can help prevent unnecessary hardship and help you reach your goals faster.
Identifying potential problems with ovulation early on a trying to conceive journey can help prevent unnecessary hardship and help you reach your goals faster.
Okay, you’ve convinced me – I’m going to get my progesterone tested
That’s great! But keep in mind that not all progesterone testing is created equal.
While progesterone blood tests are great for confirming if ovulation occurred, they fall short of providing insight into successful ovulation.
You’ll remember we mentioned that progesterone levels need to rise and remain elevated after ovulation for an ovulation to truly be considered “successful.” This oh-so-important time after ovulation is referred to as the implantation window – you know, when the embryo has a chance to implant in the uterus.
Well, a progesterone blood test only shows your levels at that one point in time when you get the blood test. Unfortunately, it’s common for progesterone to be elevated one day and low the next.
To get the best possible picture of your progesterone levels with a blood test, you would need to get several blood draws in the row and take an average of those test results – ouch! Not to mention, this can also be inconvenient and inexpensive since all the tests would need to be performed by a lab.
So how can I check for successful ovulation?
Great question! And we’re happy to help.
Proov Confirm is the first and only FDA cleared at-home PdG test kit to check for successful ovulation at home. Our Confirm tests measure PdG – the marker of progesterone that shows up in urine.
Not only is PdG testing non-invasive and easy to do at home, but it also provides a more complete picture of your levels across the implantation window to check for successful ovulation. The patented Proov PdG testing protocol ensures you’ll test on the right days each cycle to confirm whether your ovulation was successful.
Even better, the free Proov Insight app does all the hard work for you. The app will remind you when to test, along with reading and interpreting your results.
Speaking of results…what do I do if I don’t have a successful ovulation?
If your PdG results are not indicative of successful ovulation, you have many options. First and foremost, we always recommend bringing your test results to your doctor, as they will be able to help you determine the best next steps based on your unique medical history.
If your results suggest you may not have ovulated at all (also called an anovulatory cycle, and this will be obvious in the Proov Insight app), then we recommend talking to your doctor about some sort of ovulation induction medication to help kick start that process.
Often, results will show that you ovulated but may be just a tad light on PdG. This is also very fixable – you can ask your doctor for prescription medication for additional progesterone support, or you can try some at home remedies, such as:
- Seed cycling
- Herbal supplements to support progesterone production
- Diet and lifestyle changes
Have questions about successful ovulation or your PdG results? Reach out to us! We’re available 7 days a week via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.