Archived Facts Determining the time when it is safe to have intercourse without becoming pregnant can be tricky. What are the methods available? How is the safe period determined? Ovulation is the process when during the menstrual cycle an egg is released from the ovary. When the egg passes through the fallopian tubes is when fertilization may take place. Eggs that are unfertilized may live for up to twelve hours. If the egg is not fertilized it is shed from the body in the menstrual period. You are more likely to become pregnant if intercourse takes place just before or after ovulation. There are a number of changes your body goes through during the menstrual cycle. If you track these changes you can plan when to have or when to avoid intercourse. Currently there are a few methods of natural family planning, the mucus or ovulation method, the symptom thermal method and the rhythm method. The mucus or ovulation method the cervical mucus is checked during the days just before or after ovulation. When you are more likely to become pregnant the cervical mucus is clear, slick and stretchy much like an uncooked egg white. With the symptom thermal method you take your temperature everyday with a basal body thermometer and keep a chart. During ovulation your temperature will rise slightly about .9°F. The temperature rise is also accompanied with the changes in cervical mucus and other body changes like, bloating, backache, breast tenderness and pain in the ovaries. The

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