For those of you tracking your ovulation, you already know this process has developed a lot in recent years. New medical technologies, apps, and products are making it easier for women to know when they are ovulating. (Web MD also has a helpful list that can help you determine yourself if you are ovulating. A speedy review of tracking ovulation history might go something like this: first, we had peeing on sticks, then, ovulation apps, and now, wearable bracelets that measure your pulse rate and correlate your pulse with your menstrual cycle phase. We break down some of the old and new ovulation tracking tools and share our recommendations with you.
Peeing on a stick
This is a tried-and-true way to track your ovulation. Ovulation predictor kits measure a surge in women’s LH levels, and some also monitor estrogen levels. They all work similarly, and some brands we like are FirstResponse and Clearblue.
Benefits: You can take the test yourself, at home, and at minimal cost.
One app we really like is Flo Period & Ovulation tracker. A high user rated app, it describes itself as “A Fertility & Pregnancy Calendar.” When you log-in, you choose: “Track my cycle,” “Get pregnant,” or “Follow my pregnancy.” If you select, “Track my cycle,” the app asks you about your menstrual cycle and birth year and then predicts the start of your cycle. The app offers “1000+ expert reviewed articles about health, relationship, and lifestyle” and invites you into an 80+ million strong network of women “willing to support each other and share their life stories.” You can download the app for free from the App Store. Some other apps you may want to consider are Fertility Friend, Glow, Kindara, and Natural Cycles.
Benefits: Apps are convenient because you can check them (use their services) on-the-go, while at home, or when you have free time at work. Ovulation and/or pregnancy-related apps can provide individualized information about your cycle, once you enter basic information, and some connect you to a wider pool of content and interpersonal resources. Some are free to download while others charge fees.
The Ava bracelet
A newer product, the Ava bracelet works while you sleep, using “sensor technology to reveal what’s really happening with your cycle—whether you’re trying to conceive, are pregnant, or simply want to better understand your body.” The Ava app tells you in the morning about your menstrual phase and gives you information about your stress, sleep, and resting pulse rate.
Benefits: The Basic Ava 2.0 Bundle is a not-so-cheap $299, which includes the bracelet and Ava app, in-app pregnancy tracking, and access to the Ava community. The Ava bracelet highlights positive pregnancy stories from some of their users and works with the latest ovulation tracking technology. If you have the money to spend and want to try a new product, this might be a good option for you.
The bottom line is: women, there is help if you need it. Your doctors can be a resource as can apps, peer- and expert-reviewed articles, and of course, other women. The most important thing is first establishing your health goal. Then, get informed, reach out, and start tracking.
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