If you are reading this, you may have recently found out you are pregnant after practicing what is known as Natural Family Planning (NFP) or the Fertility Awareness Method (FAM). Some women use natural family planning as a way to figure out the best time to conceive, while others may be using fertility awareness to avoid pregnancy. Regardless of your situation, if you’re pregnant by Natural Family Planning or after practicing the Fertility Awareness Method, Avenue Women’s Center is available to provide support as you figure out your important next steps!
Avenue Women’s Center has been assisting women facing unexpected pregnancy in the Chicagoland area for over 35 years. Our services such as medical-grade pregnancy tests and pregnancy options consultations are provided at no cost to you. Contact us today to find out more information regarding your pregnancy and the options before you. If you are concerned you may be pregnant by natural family planning, we are here to help!
What is Natural Family Planning or the Fertility Awareness Method?
Both methods involve being aware of one’s menstrual cycles and when the most fertile days are within that cycle. On average, a woman’s menstrual cycle lasts 28 days, from day 1 of her menstrual bleeding to day 1 of the next period. Typically between the times of menstrual bleeding, there are particular days when a woman is fertile, or most likely to become pregnant. In a normal 28 day cycle, ovulation (the release of an egg from a woman’s ovary) will occur 14 days prior to the start of her next menstrual period. For the most typical cycles, there is a higher chance of pregnancy if intercourse occurs anywhere from 5 days before ovulation to 1 day after.
It’s important to note that there are many factors involved in predicting the dates of fertility such as:
- how long an egg survives in the fallopian tube (typically 24 hours)
- how long a man’s sperm survives in a woman’s body after intercourse (average 3-5 days)
- a woman’s typical menstruation cycle, which varies from person to person and even month to month
There are several methods available for women who are using natural family planning to help determine when their days of fertility will occur, including the Standard Days Method; Cervical Mucous Method; Basal Body Temperature (BBT) Method; and the Symptothermal Method. More information on each of these methods can be found in the resource referenced below.
Considerations Before Starting Natural Family Planning or the Fertility Awareness Method
If you are considering Natural Family Planning or fertility awareness, we encourage you to follow up with your doctor to determine which method may be best for you. Each woman’s body and cycle is unique and varied. A recent pregnancy, menopause, certain medications, and life factors, among other things, may effect the timing of a woman’s menstrual cycles. All of these should be discussed with a doctor as well when considering how best Natural Family Planning or the Fertility Awareness Method may work for you.
If you recently had a positive test or are concerned you might be pregnant while doing natural family planning or fertility awareness, and it’s not the right time, contact Avenue Women’s Center today. We understand that each woman’s situation is unique and our caring staff is available to help address any questions or concerns you may have. Call, chat, email, or text us today for a free consultation. We look forward to hearing from you.
- The American College of Obstretricians and Gynocologists (ACOG). (2015, April). Fertility Awareness – Based Methods of Family Planning. Retrieved December 2018 from https://www.acog.org/Patients/FAQs/Fertility-Awareness-Based-Methods-of-Family-Planning.
Reviewed by Patricia Kuenzi, APN-CNP, MSN, ANP, PNP.The information provided here is general in nature. It is not a substitute for a consultation with a medical professional. Before any medical procedure, it is imperative that you discuss your personal medical history, risks, and concerns with your doctor. If you have questions during or after a procedure, your doctor should be immediately contacted. Avenue Women’s Center is not an emergency center. If you are experiencing severe symptoms, such as bleeding and/or pain, seek immediate medical attention. Contact your physician, go to an emergency room, or call 911.