Once you start trying to conceive or even begin to think about it, you will often feel like you’re learning a whole new language- but I suppose it’s that way with everything new.  I remember planning my wedding and nonchalantly telling the hubs that we had to take pictures for our STDs {save the dates}.  You could have just imagined his reaction to that one!  There are so many acronyms and things that seem totally unrelated to trying to conceiving {i.e. baby aspirin & mucinex}.  Here’s a little resource guide for some of the things you want to know, need to know {and maybe even a few you wish you’d never known} about trying to conceive and the lingo that goes with it.

Basic Female Reproductive Anatomy:

(I won’t go into the functions of these but it’s good to familiarize yourself with them)
Cervix
Uterus
Endometrium
Fallopian Tubes
Ovaries
Eggs

Menstruation, Ovulation, and Mucous -Oh My!:
Aunt Flo (AF) – Simply put, menstruation.

Cycle Day (CD) – The first day of menstruation indicates the first day of your cycle (CD 1).  It’s important to know how long your cycle lasts because not everyone has what I call a perfect “textbook 28 day” cycle.  Knowing how long your cycle is helps you to understand when you may ovulate and other useful information.

Luteinizing Hormone (LH) – To keep matters simple, it’s a hormone that triggers ovulation in women.  Also referred to as a LH surge.

Ovulation (O) -The release of a mature egg that waits a 12-24 hour time frame to be fertilized in the fallopian tube.

Days Past Ovulation (DPO) – The number of days that have passed since ovulation.  Also the time you enter into your two week wait and luteal phase.

Cervical Mucus (CM) – Produced by glands in the cervix.  Cervical mucus has different textures throughout a typical cycle. 

Egg White Cervical Mucus (EWCM) – Specifically for the function of trying to conceive, cervical mucus needs to be the consistency of egg whites (loose jelly substance) around the time of ovulation.  Egg white cervical mucus help sperm to survive.

Baby Dance (BD) – Sex.

Two Week Wait (2WW) – The period between when ovulation occurred and the next expected menstrual cycle is due.  If conception occurred during ovulation, this is the stage of implantation in the womb and most women find themselves anxious to take a home pregnancy test.

Luteal Phase (LP) -Also referred to as the days past ovulation (DPO), the luteal phase happens in the second half or later part of your cycle.  It’s the time period from when ovulation ends and the day before your next menstrual cycle.  The length of your luteal phase plays a very important part in trying to conceive.  A short luteal phase (less than 10 days) can cause fertility problems because it keeps the lining of the uterus (endometrium) from supporting a pregnancy.

I think this may be enough for one day!  In Part II, I’ll go over the following:

  • Tracking & Predictors
  • The Tests & Results
  • Handy Dandy Helpers
  • Barriers & When To Seek Professional Help

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