What does ovulation mean?

You may have heard the term ‘ovulation’ used in the context of ‘menstrual cycle’. Ovulation is an important part of female fertility and becoming pregnant. Therefore, you should understand what ovulation is and what happens in your body during ovulation.

Ovulation occurs when a follicle ruptures and the next ovum (egg) is released from the ovaries. Ovulation takes place on average 14 days before the beginning of menstrual bleeding, i.e. in the middle of the menstrual cycle. At that time, the matured egg is released from the ovary via the oviduct towards the uterus. The right and left ovary take turns releasing eggs. Female fertility and thus also the possibility of pregnancy is at their peak during ovulation. Therefore, couples trying for a child try to time having sex to this phase of the menstrual cycle.

During ovulation, you may feel some aching around your lower stomach and notice some changes in your vaginal discharge. When ovulating, the vaginal discharge resembles raw egg whites, in other words, it’s clear and gooey. With age, you’ll learn to recognise the different phases of your menstrual cycle. In puberty, it is normal that the length of the menstrual cycle varies as your body is adapting to its natural rhythm.