If you’re trying to conceive (TTC) in this day and age, it seems like having an app is a given, especially if you’re tracking your cycles. Choosing the right app can be pretty overwhelming though. How are you supposed to know which one is worthwhile? What are the best apps for trying to get pregnant? Perhaps you’re looking for something that simply tracks your periods, or you're in need of an app that is totally detailed with charts, push notifications, and ways to enter a ton of data to take the guesswork out of knowing your fertile window. If you’re planning on using the Natural Family Planning Method when TTC, having an app is a huge help in the process, too.
When choosing an app, I wanted something that was very detailed, but didn't necessarily use a line graph chart (because I hate those and have always had a hard time reading them for some reason). I also wanted an app that helped me know when my fertile window was, gave me a percentage of how fertile I was for each day to plan sex, and helped me track my cycles and symptoms — so I went with Ovia. And now, instead of giving my doctor a deer in the headlights look when they ask me when the first day of my last menstrual cycle was, I can pull up the app and tell them with confidence instead of trusting myself with entering information in my planner. The app makes it so much easier to be organized while TTC.
I asked some of the girls in the TTC group I’m in on Facebook why they decided to use TTC apps, and the general consensus was similar to my reasoning — using an app seems to be easier than trying to chart everything manually on a calendar, in addition to having a support system in place. The following were the most recommended fertility apps in a poll I posted in my TTC group. And these apps are free, which is even better.
Ovia is the fertility app that I use, and I love it for its detailedness and "fertility scores," so you know which day of your cycle you're most fertile on a scale from one to 10. It's easy to read and Ovia also offers health insights if it notices something wacky about any symptoms you've entered. It's also supposed to become "smarter" the longer you use it, based on information you input. You can input the consistency of your cervical fluid — a very important part of TTC — your weight, your food/calorie intake for the day, any symptoms you may be feeling (bloated, moody, etc.), and results for ovulation tests and pregnancy tests. It also tracks your sleep cycles and medications. Once you conceive, there is Ovia Pregnancy, and even Ovia Parenting. According to the Ovia website, the company wants to be a leader in digital healthcare technology for women and families.
Beth Cunningham from New York tells Romper she's currently using three apps to track her fertility, but Ovia is her favorite. "I have three apps: Flow, which I really don't like, Ovia, which is probably my favorite because of all the great tips and it's easy to use, and finally, Glow, because it's also easy to use. I also tried Period Tracker, but it wasn't right for me — it didn't have the graphs and other tools like the other apps I use."
Ovia seems to be the most popular among all of the ladies I spoke with. Emillie Stone-Lemieux from Thorold, Ontario tells Romper, "What I like about Ovia, honestly, is the interface. I'm not sure if it's very accurate, or if it truly 'learns you,' but I really like the interface. It looks nice and it is easy to use. I've used a few different apps: Ovia, Fertility Friend, Glow and Clue — but I always come back to Ovia.
Cunningham adds, "I like the way Ovia and Glow tell you your fertility window, and graph it all out and tell you what percent chance you have of conceiving. Ovia gives you a fertility score, how many days until you test, how many days until your fertility window, and your cycle window, so I really like how it's set up."
So what about that Glow everyone keeps mentioning? Like most fertility apps, Glow has a fertility calendar, a place to enter your "daily health log," and offers health insights. The really cool thing about Glow is not only can you share stats with your partner, but it also tracks male fertility, giving you a complete fertility profile. There are also fertility coaches on Glow's website to answer questions, and once you do conceive, you can easily switch over to the "Glow Baby" app, transferring all your information from one app to another. While some of the girls in the group had used Glow before, they said it was not as accurate as the Fertility Friend app.
Fertility Friend was ranked as one of the best apps (along with Ovia) according to the girls in the group. They all loved that you can input super-detailed information, and it had the most comprehensive fertility charts and a color-coded calendar. It also takes your basal body temperature (BBT) into consideration, and adds that information to a line graph, giving you a comprehensive map of your fertility status. "It doesn't contain much extra fluff that I don't need," Courtney Baeb, from Green Bay Wisconsin tells Romper. You can also see other charts like yours, and connect to that person. Another cool aspect of this app is it offers a free fertility charting course, so you know how to read the graphs and input your data correctly, because that (to me) is confusing.
Kindara has charting capabilities and a similar charting look to Fertility Friend. You can create up to 50 custom fields specific to your body, and there's a "Community Knowledge Base" to have your questions answered, according to the Kindara website. Their highly detailed symptom descriptions help you pinpoint exactly what your body is doing — is your cervical fluid sticky, creamy, or watery? Is there a little bit, a medium amount, or a lot? What makes this app different from the other apps is it pairs with Wink, a bluetooth connected BBT thermometer. It syncs seamlessly with the Kindara app, automatically putting your results into the graph.
Baeb did notice, however, a few flaws with using an app, as some aren’t necessarily as customizable for personal experiences as you would hope. “One problem I've noticed is that none of them have an option to mark an ectopic pregnancy. A few of them allow you to chart that a pregnancy was loss, but they lean heavily toward miscarriages, which is not the same physically or chart-wise as an ectopic pregnancy,” she says. “When I had my ectopic pregnancy last year, it threw off my chart averages for quite a while."
Whether you're on a tight timeline, or you just want to get the process started because you're ready to have a family, using an app can definitely help speed things along. It helps by taking the guesswork out of trying to figure out when you're ovulating, and when you're most fertile to get the best results — a BFP on your pregnancy test.