Fertility TTC, Pregnancy, Pregnancy Journey

When to Take an Ovulation Test? Get an Accurate Result.

If you are trying to conceive, then knowing when to take an ovulation test is very crucial. It can be a deal-breaker! If you have sexual intercourse outside this very limited time, you will likely not conceive.

Everyone ovulates at a different time, but there are ways and tricks to pinpoint the exact or rough time of ovulation. If you would like to know when do you ovulate after your period, you should understand how your body works.  You can only get pregnant when you ovulate.

Ovulation occurs when an egg is released from the ovary and begins to move down the fallopian tube. That is when a sperm if available fertilizes an egg.

The chances of pregnancy change according to what day of your cycle it is. If we take an average cycle of 28 days, a woman is usually only fertile up to seven days.

So, finding out when you ovulate can increase your chances of pregnancy drastically. Ovulation tests can help women indicate when they are ovulating.

So, this post will help you answer the question of when to take an ovulation test and when to baby dance.

In this post, the following will be discussed.

  • Understanding the menstrual cycle.¬†
  • When do you ovulate after your period?
  • Symptoms of Ovulation
  • How to pinpoint the exact or approximate time of ovulation?
  • When should I have sexual intercourse for conception?
  • What are ovulation tests?
  • Why should I use an ovulation test?
  • How to take an ovulation test?
  • When to take an ovulation test?
  • How to read an ovulation test?
  • Are ovulation tests accurate?
  • Can you have a negative ovulation test but still ovulate?
  • Is there a reason why your ovulation test is always negative?
  • Best Ovulation Kits

Disclaimer: This post may have affiliate links. If you purchase something I may earn some commission and it should not cost you any additional fees. 
Also, I am not a doctor and this should not be taken as medical advice. Contact your doctor for any questions you have. This post is only for informational purposes. 
when to take an ovulation test

Understanding the Menstrual Cycle

A normal menstrual cycle is usually 28 days, but it can range anywhere from 21 to 40 days. It includes the first day of your period to the last day right before you get your next period. It consists of 4 phases.

The first phase starts from the time you see your period until it ends. Your period usually lasts for 3 to 8 days.

The second phase is the follicular phase which includes the first day of your period to the last day of ovulation.  It is usually between 11 and 27 days.

The third phase is the ovulation phase. This is the shortest phase which is between 12 and 24 hours.

The fourth phase is the luteal phase which is the day after ovulation to the day right before you get your next period. This is usually between 11 and 17 days.  

When do you ovulate after period?

You usually ovulate mid cycle which is a few days after your period. Firstly, ovulation is the release of an egg from an ovary.

Usually, a high level of LH causes your ovaries to release an egg that survives approximately 24 hours. If it meets a sperm, it has a chance of becoming a baby. If it does not meet any sperm, it will die and be release with your next period.

So, when do you ovulate after a period? The fertile window, the time period in which you may get pregnant, is usually 6 days. 5 days before ovulation days and the day of ovulation.

It is wrong to calculate your ovulation date based on how many days you have passed after your period. Instead, count how many days it is approximately before your next period.

Usually, 14 days before your next period is the day of ovulation. But, this is just a guess. To calculate a better estimate, continue reading.

Symptoms of Ovulation

It is important to look for symptoms of ovulation. They are quite recognizable if you actually look for them. Symptoms of ovulation include increased egg-white cervical mucus. higher basal body temperature, increased sexual drive, mild cramps in lower abdomen, softened and opened cervix, breast tenderness and light bleeding.

Fun Fact: Did you know that some people ovulate more than once a month?

How to pinpoint the exact or approximate time of ovulation?

  • If you are pinpointing your ovulation day by looking for symptoms, you should know most of the ovulation symptoms occur a day or a few hours before ovulation.
  • You can also use ovulation kits to pinpoint the date of your ovulation. You would have a positive test a day or two before ovulation. 
  • You can also detect ovulation by having an ultrasound done.
  • Fertility monitors are expensive by help track ovulation by measuring two hormones, FSH and LH.

When should I have sexual intercourse for conception?

For conception, you should have sexual intercourse 5 days before ovulation and on the day of ovulation, and the day after ovulation. You could also have sexual intercourse every other day in that fertile window.

You could also have sexual intercourse every other day for the entire month. Keep in mind, if your partner has a low sperm count you should save up and only focus on the fertile window.

If you and your partner have no infertility problems, you should be pregnant within the first 6 months of trying this method. If you would like to increase your chance of conception and conceive even more quickly, then you should read this article “Tips and Tricks To Get Pregnant Quickly.”

If you are trying to prevent pregnancy, trying to predict your ovulation date and not have sexual intercourse around the fertile period is not the way.

You may make a mistake in predicting the date, your partner’s sperm may survive more than you anticipate. The best way to prevent pregnancies is by using a contraceptive. Talk to your doctor about birth control options.

If you want to have a specific gender, read this article “How To Choose The Sex Of Your Baby.”

What are ovulation tests?

Ovulations tests are at-home tests that measure the amount of LH found in your urine. When the tests positive it tells you, you are going to ovulate soon. 

They look like pregnancy tests, but they measure LH instead of the pregnancy hormone, HCG. Some come in packs, and some packs contain both pregnancy tests and ovulations strips. Those would be your best deals. 

Why should I use an ovulation test?

You should use an ovulation test because it increases your chances of conception by. pinpointing when you ovulate. The tests are highly trustable, and save you the time of trying to figure out when you ovulate. 

How to take an ovulation test?

Ovulation tests are simple. They detect a specific hormone called LH, luteinizing hormone, which usually peaks as you get closer to ovulation.

The test should always have two lines. One of the lines is the control line. This line should always be dark, and this would indicate that the test is working appropriately. The other line may be dark or faint and this would indicate how far you are from ovulation day. The more the luteinizing hormone there is, the darker the test line would be.

Here are some instructions you should follow. You should pee in a cup. This would decrease the number of mistakes that may occur. Dip the test but make sure the urine does not go beyond the line shown on the test. Wait five minutes and read the results. If you only see one line, then the test is faulty.

Ovulation tests are not like pregnancy tests. Do not take them when you first wake up in the morning. Instead, get rid of your first-morning pee.

Hold your urine for three to four hours, and use that urine. The urine should look concentrated (not clear). The best time to take it is between 12 pm and 8 pm.

That is because usually luteinizing hormone surges in the morning and it takes a few hours to appear on a test.

When to take an ovulation test?

As mentioned above the best time to take an ovulation test is between 12 pm and 8 pm. Now, let’s talk about which days you should take the test. Ovulation tests cost money so taking them every day and more than once a day would be costly. So, let us get to it!

  • Do not take an ovulation test when you have your period or menstrual cycle. The chances of ovulating on those days are almost zero. So, don’t waste them on those days.
  • Average out the number of days your cycle is. It could be anywhere from twenty-one to forty days. This is considered normal. More or less than that amount of days may indicate menstrual problems.
  • Now divide the number of days your cycle is by 2. For example, if you have an average 28-day cycle. Divide it by 2. You will get 14. Day 14 would be considered mid-cycle.
  • Begin testing three to four days before mid-cycle. So, if your cycle is 28 days, your mid-cycle would be day 14 and you should begin testing four days before that. This means you will begin testing on day 10 of your cycle.
  • Remember you are most fertile three days before ovulation. So, begin baby dancing even before your ovulation test turns positive.
  • If you don’t want to do all these calculations, just begin testing 17 days before you expect your next period.

How to read an ovulation test?

Reading ovulation tests may be confusing. So, let me help you!

  • You should always see two lines after inserting the ovulation test in your urine.
  • Read it five minutes after inserting it in urine.
  • Compare the test line and the control line.
  • For the test to be positive, the test line must be as dark or darker as the control line.
  • The ovulation test is negative if the line is not as dark as the control line.
  • Two lines on the test do not indicate that it is positive like a pregnancy test.
  • Once you begin seeing the test line getting darker, you should begin baby dancing. That is because your chances of pregnancy begin to increase. Right before ovulation about 12-48 hours before, you will get a positive ovulation test. That is the most fertile day of your cycle. Once your test turns negative, still baby dance because you can get pregnant right after ovulation.
  • Stop testing once your ovulation test turns from positive to negative.

Are ovulation tests accurate?

Ovulate tests are highly accurate. They do not tell you an exact time of when you would ovulate, but they are 99 percent accurate in giving you an idea of the day you would ovulate.

Also, they are even more accurate when you look for other symptoms of ovulation. You could test your BBT, look at your cervical mucus and take the tests to know when you are most fertile. 

Can you have a negative ovulation test but still ovulate?

Yes, you can have a negative ovulation test but still ovulate. Ovulation tests for an increase or surge in LH, luteinizing hormone, which occurs right before ovulation.

You have a small period of time when the ovulation test will turn positive. If you do not test in that period of time, you would keep getting negatives and think you did not ovulate. If you are worried about this, test twice in a day and you won’t miss it. 

Is there a reason why your ovulation test is always negative?

when to take an ovulation test

Yes, some reasons why your ovulation test is always negative are you are not ovulating, you are not testing in the ovulation period, and you are testing on the wrong days. 

You may not always ovulate. So many factors can stop you from ovulating like loosing too much weight, gaining too much weight, stress and the weather. 

As mentioned before, the test would turn positive during a short period of time. Test twice a day if necessary.

Also, don’t test during your period or at the end of you cycle. Test three or four days before you expect to ovulate and keep testing until it turns negative after a positive. 

Best Ovulation Kits

  • The most accurate ovulation test is the ClearBlue Digital Test. They come in packs of two, but they are expensive 30 dollars. Keep in mind the results will be easy to read. It will be in the form of a smiley face. A sad face means negative and a happy face means positive. Click here to see it.
  • If you are looking for a Cheap and Accurate Set Of Ovulation Strips and Pregnancy Tips, get MomMed. They are reliable and come as a set. So you would have 40 ovulation tests and 15 pregnancy tests for only about 14 Dollars. Click here to see them.

Post your ovulation tests in the comments below. I can help you decide whether they are positive or not and when to baby dance. 

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3 years ago

This was such a great article. Thanks so much for all the information that you provided!

3 years ago

This was a really good article. I appreciate you sharing this info and how you laid it out for women to understand.

3 years ago

Such a useful post about a topic that we definitely need to talk more about as it is something women always wonder about

Monica Simpson
Monica Simpson
3 years ago

I have been fortunate to have a few of those symptoms so it’s been pretty easy for me to know when I ovulate. I also really love the app Fertility Friend to track my periods.

3 years ago

I have PCOS so I relied on OPKs as I ovulate randomly to know when I was ovulating. Physical signs can be helpful but aren’t always accurate.

Luna S
Luna S
3 years ago

Fantastic post! I will pass this onto a friend who is trying to have a baby. Thanks for writing this up!