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Reproductive Endocrinologists
Couples facing fertility problems begin the long journey of diagnosis and treatment with their own doctors. Usually, each member of the couple starts out seeing their regular doctors, and perhaps the woman sees her obstetrician/gynecologist. But after awhile, it becomes clear that it would be...

Charting Your Basal Body Temperature

Posted Sunday, January 4, 2009 9:51 PM

How To Chart Basal Body TemperatureIt is usually pretty exciting for couples when they first decide that they are ready to begin trying to have a baby. They start to plan how their family life will be, choose baby names, and maybe even talk about decorating a nursery. So, it can be quite devastating when a couple begins to have fertility problems.

It is essential, though, that a couple tries to stay positive and not let the issue become too stressful. After all, too much stress can have an effect on fertility, and a couple certainly doesn’t want to increase their problems.

So, what couples should do is try to relax, take things slowly, and start with a simple—but proven to work—fertility helper. They should try doing basal body temperature (BBT) charting.

Basal body temperature charting sounds complicated, but in reality it is pretty simple. But, it is also effective. This technique has helped countless women to conceive. Now, that is no guarantee that it will work for every couple; but, it is a good starting point. Plus, it is inexpensive, requiring nothing more than a good digital thermometer and a graph on which to chart your daily temperature.

First, the thermometer. You can spend a lot at a specialty store or online and get a top-of-the-line BBT thermometer. Or, you can go to a regular mass merchandiser store or drugstore and spend about $10 to $15 for a good digital thermometer that will work just as well.

As for the graph, the easiest way to get this is to do an online search for “basal body temperature chart.” You will find several results, many of which will have free printable graphs that you can use. Select one of these and print it out.

Now, the procedure for this technique is pretty simple. Start your chart on the first day of your cycle. All you have to do is take your temperature each morning before you get out of bed and write it down on the chart. Make sure you write down the exact figure, such as 97.63 degrees—do not just round up or down. Also, it is important that you take your temperature at the same time every day, so set an alarm clock—even on the weekends.

The way the basal body temperature chart works is fairly uncomplicated as well. Your temperature will stay the same every day for several days. Then you will notice one day that your temperature has risen by about .2 degrees. Your temperature will stay this way for 3 consecutive days. Then your temperature will come back down again. At the time that your temperature rises, that’s when you have ovulated.

After charting your basal body temperature through a few cycles, you will see a pattern—this is your cycle. So, you will know on what day of your cycle that you ovulate—and, you will know that you and your partner can have intercourse every day of your cycle up until the day of ovulation. Soon enough, you will—hopefully—achieve conception.

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