What to Chart on your Fertility Chart

What to Chart on your Fertility Chart

Fertility charting can be an essential tool for women who are trying to conceive, avoid pregnancy or simply want to monitor their menstrual cycle. By tracking various physical and emotional symptoms throughout their cycle, women can gain insight into their body’s hormonal fluctuations, identify potential hormone imbalances or fertility issues. At a minimum, fertility awareness involves charting bleeding, cervical mucous observations, sexual intercourse and basal body temperature. This is done to confirm ovulation and identify the fertile window. In most cases, this is enough to use the fertility awareness method for conception or birth control, however if women wish to use their fertility chart to help them gain a better understanding of their bodies and to help potentially identify hormone imbalances and fertility concerns, charting different symptoms along with their fertility chart can give valuable insight into hormone health. In fact, when interpreted correctly with a trained fertility awareness instructor, a fertility chart can become more valuable than hormonal blood tests in helping to accurately diagnose and identify hormonal imbalances.

Here is a list of things I encourage my clients to chart:
  • Any bleeding: heavy, moderate, light. This includes and any spotting before and after the period and any bleeding and spotting outside of their period or inter-menstrual bleeding
  • Basal Body Temperature
  •  Cervical mucus: consistency and volume and sensation such as sticky, creamy, tacky, thick, crusty, slippery, wet, lots, little, none.  The woman should use her own language to express what she observes and help identify her own patterns in a way that makes sense to her.
  • Sensation at the vulva: such as dry, itchy, wet, slippery, moist, damp.
  • Sexual intercourse: whether it was protected, unprotected, or using withdrawal method. Include which barrier method was used eg. condom
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Sleep disturbances
  • Travel (especially time zone travel)
  • Illness such as cold and flu
  • Any new medications, herbs or supplements
  • Stressful life events
  • Physical symptoms: period pain (mild, severe), ovulation pain, breast tenderness, headaches, nausea, lack of appetite dizziness, bloating, digestive discomfort, water retention, fatigue, libido changes etc.
  • Mood symptoms: irritability, anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts, OCD tendencies, feelings of overwhelm, helplessness, fear, irrational behaviour, and hyperactivity, rushed, hurried, sense of urgency. Happy, motivated, productive, reflective, creative, content, grounded, responsible, joyful, excited etc.

By tracking these factors on their fertility chart, women can gain insight into their body’s hormonal fluctuations, identify potential disruptions to accurate charting, hormonal imbalances and fertility issues, and seek medical attention if necessary. Physical and emotional symptoms as well as any potential interferences should be recorded in the journal section of a fertility tracking app such as the Read Your Body App or can be recorded separately in other apps or journals of choice.

For more information, read my articles on cervical mucous and basal body temperature 


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