Cervical Mucus?

Should I be checking my cervical mucus?  What am I looking for and how do I do it?
ByPaula Kashtan
Updated
Mar 2017
Hero Image

First, put down any food you may be munching on. That said… yes, you should definitely set aside some personal time to check your cervical mucus when you’re trying to conceive. It’s an effective way to track ovulation and know when you’re at your most fertile.

Quick review of the relevance of cervical mucus (or, vaginal discharge): In the days leading up to ovulation, it gets much more slippery, clear, and stretchy than normal. Your mucus will be at its stretchiest on the day you ovulate. It should resemble egg whites, more or less. Right now, your mucus is the perfect consistency for housing sperm — meaning this is also the best time to hop in the sack and try to conceive.

Checking your own cervical mucus isn’t tough. Insert your (thoroughly washed) index finger into your vagina and circle around your cervix (or as close as you can get) to collect the mucus. Remove your finger, and once you can see it press your thumb against it. Then pull your fingers apart, and note if the mucus breaks right away or merely stretches. The more stretchy the mucus, the more fertile you are. (This is where our  fertility chart gets really helpful — evaluating “stretchiness” is a lot easier when you’ve been consistently recording it and therefore have something to compare it to.) You can also simply wipe the entrance of your vagina with a tissue to get a mucus sample to evaluate, but the finger method generally works better.

Plus, more from The Bump:

Related Video

How to Get Pregnant With an Irregular Period

Samuel Wood, MD
Reproductive Endocrinologist

Fertility 101

Kelly Alfieri

Sign You’re Ovulating: Sex Fantasies!

Sarah Yang
Published
03/28/2012

Cervical Mucus?

Paula Kashtan

How Long Are Eggs Viable?

Jackie Gutmann, MD, reproductive endocrinologist, Reproductive Medicine Associates of Philadelphia
Fertility Specialist

When Sperm Meets Egg, Sparks Fly

Anisa Arsenault
Associate Editor
Published
05/06/2016

What Is Anovulation?

Kaylen M. Silverberg, MD, clinical assistant professor, department of obstetrics and gynecology, division of reproductive endocrinology/infertility, University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, and reproductive endocrinologist with Texas Fertility Center in Austin, Texas
OB-GYN

What Is Puregon?

Mark P. Leondires, MD, medical director and lead infertility doctor with Reproductive Medicine Associates of Connecticut
Fertility Specialist