Cervical mucus is a discharge from the vagina that changes during a woman’s monthly cycle. As a woman, your body will go through changes at different times of the month and the consistency of the cervical mucus will also change.
The best way to identify the pattern of these changes is to chart them daily and be really in tune with your body. Read on to know how cervical mucus changes during your cycle.
First, you need to know that the estrogen hormone is responsible for stimulating the cervix to secrete the cervical mucus or fluid . The changes in your menstrual cycle will be in response to the ovarian hormones and the fluid will be noticeable at the cervix or when it passes into the vagina.
The volume and quality of mucus produced during your cycle will fluctuate and if you observe the changes you could identify the days when you are most fertile.
One of the main purposes of the mucus throughout the fertile period would be to sustain the sperm in a medium that’s healthy for it to move freely throughout the cervix. At ovulation, you will notice an increase in the cervical mucus and the texture will change to become more slippery, stretchable, and elastic.
The most effective and easiest way to know the quantity and presence of estrogen hormone in the bloodstream would be to examine how your cervical fluid changes throughout your cycle. The changes of the cervical fluid during your menstrual cycle will be a primary sign of fertility.
This fluid play a very important role as it nourishes and protects sperm as it travels through the reproductive tract to reach the egg . It also helps get rid of abnormal sperms in the semen.
How Cervical Mucus Changes During Menstrual Cycle
The pattern for your cervical fluid might vary from one cycle to the next as well as vary from other women, so the following will highlight the typical progression of the quality and quantity that you can see during your cycle:
Following menstrual period: You will produce the lowest amount of cervical mucus immediately after your period. Like some women, you might experience dryness without any sign of mucus at this time. However, the mucus will change in the next few days to become somewhat sticky with a white, cloudy or yellow color.
When ovulation approaches: Your estrogen levels will start to surge at this time, causing your cervix to discharge more mucus of fertile quality. The cervical mucus of fertile quality is referred to as egg white mucus because it’s stretchy and clear with a consistency that is similar to egg whites .
This fluid is the ideal protective medium for the sperm because of the pH and texture. You will have a higher chance of getting pregnant if you have enough of the egg white mucus throughout your fertile window.
In addition, it will be easy to identify the most fertile days if you know when this type of mucus is produced. In simple terms, you will see an increase in moistness and quantity of your cervical mucus as you enter the fertile window of your cycle.
During ovulation: The cervical mucus production will be at the highest during the period right before ovulation with a color and consistency that resembles egg whites. You’ll notice a texture that becomes increasingly stretchable and slippery.
Once you notice the presence of the fertile-quality mucus, you’ll know that you are in the days when you are most fertile.
Following ovulation: The quantity of your cervical mucus will start to decrease and develop a consistency that is thicker.
This thicker mucous makes it difficult for sperms to ascend the genital tract and is thus considered to be non-fertile.
It is important to point out that everyone will not experience the same variations. Another thing is that the increase in cervical fluid could increase your libido or sex drive and produce lubrication for intercourse to become more pleasurable and comfortable.
Now, if you are tracking the changes in your mucus to increase your chances of getting pregnant you may notice that enough of the fertile-quality fluid is not produced around your ovulation time.
It could also be that you are producing hostile cervical mucus, which means it’s sticky and thick instead of stretchy and thin. These two conditions can interfere with your reproductive efforts and make it difficult for the sperm to go to the fallopian tubes to fertilize an egg.
The presence of the hostile mucus or the insufficient production of the fertile-quality mucus can be caused by many factors such as stress, poor diet, hormonal problems, or the use of prescription medications .
Once you notice that you have this problem, you should talk to your doctor about ways to improve the quality and quantity of cervical mucus.
Last but not least, it would also be a good idea to observe your cervical position while examining the changes in your cervical fluids. Similar to how cervical mucus changes during your cycle, the changes in the cervix will also be a sign of fertility and ovulation.