Whether or not you're trying to get pregnant, it's really important to know when your body is most fertile — knowing the inner workings of your cycle can help you be aware of exactly what your body is doing, and that's super empowering. Honestly, it doesn't matter whether you are trying to conceive or prevent pregnancy, your body has the answers, and you should know them. So, when are you most likely to get pregnant? There's a few things to consider.
According to Fit Pregnancy, there is about a 20 percent chance of getting pregnant each month. The probability of getting pregnant at each given stage of your monthly cycle, of course, varies on each individual and their body. But, there are times when you are more or less likely to get pregnant.
For instance, according to the American Pregnancy Association (APA), you are not as likely to get pregnant during your period, unless you have a cycle that is shorter than the average 28 to 30 days. Alternatively, as the APA noted, the chances of getting pregnant right before your period are extremely low, while the chances of getting pregnant after your period start to increase as you move into your fertility window. Most women are most fertile 10 to 21 days into their cycle, or 10 to 21 days after the first day of their period. You can begin to note the start of your fertility window by checking your cervical mucus, as it will change into an egg-white consistency.
However, even judging cycles by your period can be tricky. According to Dr. Brian Levine, OB-GYN of CCRM New York, just because your period is regular doesn’t mean your cycle is regular, or that you are actually even ovulating. In fact, he says in an interview with Romper, many woman can have abnormalities in their cycle that keep them from becoming pregnant. Therefore, Levine suggests using a simple ovulation predictor kit (not the digital ones) starting 10 days after the start of your period, which is typically the start of your fertility window. This can help you know when your body is about to ovulate, and help you understand your personal cycle even better.
If the kits don’t work, the date of it turning positive changes each month, or the length of the cycle is changing month-to-month, then Levine recommends going to talk to your OB-GYN to further explore your cycle and body regularities.
Knowing your body and the way it works is an empowering thing, and your doctor is always there to help. Even if pregnancy isn't something you're planning, you can get to know your body's schedule a little better by charting your own fertility.