How do ovulation predictor kits work?

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There are lots of ways to identify when you’re fertile, like tracking basal body temperature or looking for changes in your cervical mucus. But what if you want something a little more precise? That’s when ovulation predictor kits (OPKs) are the ideal solution.

What they do

  • Hormone detection: Once per cycle, your body begins to produce an increased amount of luteinizing hormone (LH) – as much as 2 to 5 times the amount you normally would. This is what signals your body to begin ovulating. An ovulation prediction kit will measure your LH levels over a period of time and let you know when this surge happens, so you know when you’re about to ovulate.

    Our friends at Clearblue make an ovulation test that gives results with an easy to read smiley face. By using the Clearblue Digital Ovulation Test to identify your most fertile days, you and your partner can maximize your chances of becoming pregnant.

  • Saliva: As you approach ovulation, the electrolytes in your saliva organize into a unique pattern. Some OPKs provide you with a microscope that allows you to see when your saliva is “ferning.” Some studies* have shown them to be inaccurate or hard to interpret.

How to take them

  • Test strips: These are a common kind of OPK, and measure how much LH is present in your urine. You’ll want to test at the same time every day, ideally in the morning when it’s typically most convenient and your urine is most concentrated.

    There are usually two colored lines on these tests: a “control” line that indicates the test has worked, and the “test” line which will appear after about five minutes of running the test if a surge in LH is detected. You’ll need to use a test strip every day in the week leading up to your fertile window.

  • Saliva: A saliva test will require you to use a microscope. You’ll place a bit of saliva on the test, then wait 5 minutes for it to dry. When you look through the eyepiece, make sure that your sample is being back-lit, and look for lots of crystal-like formations. Learning how to interpret your results is really important for saliva tests.
  • Clearblue tests: The digital ovulation test from Clearblue is unique, and works a bit differently from other tests. You take them in the same way you would a test strip, but you’ll use the same holder each time.

    Because the size of a hormone surge can differ from one woman to the next, your Clearblue Digital Ovulation Test actually keeps track of your test results as you approach your fertile window. This gives you accurate, more personalized results. The indicator will show an easy-to-read smiley face when you are experiencing peak fertility.

What to do with the results

Log them into Ovia! If you use a Clearblue test, you can log peak fertility results right in your Ovia app.

A positive ovulation test means it’s time to put the “try” in TTC! Having sex during your peak fertility days is why you’re tracking ovulation, so when you see that dark line, ferned saliva, or smiley face, let your partner know it’s time to schedule a romantic rendezvous.

To improve your chances of conceiving, give the Clearblue Digital Ovulation Test a try. Tap the button below to find out more.

Learn more

*Brezina, P. R., Haberl, E., and Wallach, E. At home testing: optimizing management for the infertility physician. Fertility and Sterility (2011) 95(6), 1867-1878.

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