When you start trying to conceive you will likely begin to chart your cycle and track ovulation. This is particularly difficult if you have irregular cycles.
A good place to start is to determine if you actually have irregular cycles. Most of us have heard so much about the twenty eight day cycle that we mistakenly think anything other than that is not regular. This isn’t the case. There is a range of average for the menstrual cycle, anywhere from 24 to 35 days.
You will need to track your cycle for several months to determine a pattern, especially if you never paid much attention before. To count the days in your cycle, begin with the first day of your period as day one and end on the day the next period begins.
Don’t stress too much if you have the occasional cycle that is shorter or longer than normal. For example, if you have a 31 day cycle nearly all the time, but experience one or two cycles that last 29 or 33 days, there is likely nothing to worry about. The general pattern is what you need to consider.
Trying to get pregnant is more difficult if your cycle isn’t regular. It is more difficult to predict ovulation and calculate your most fertile time when this varies from cycle to cycle. Tracking your cycle for several months will help you and your doctor work together to establish the best time for you to conceive.
If the length of the cycle fluctuates from month to month and you skip some periods, contact your doctor. It may be that you aren’t ovulating, which is also known as anovulation. You may be ovulating sometimes, but not every month. This is a cause for concern and should be evaluated by your doctor.
Your doctor may want to rule out medical conditions that can interfere with ovulation, such as PCOS, diabetes, glandular problems, hormonal imbalances or even liver disease. Women with irregular cycles are often given a fertility drug called Clomid.