Cervical mucus is an egg-white colored semi-fluid substance present in the cervix of the female reproductive system. The role of cervical mucus is very important in pregnancy. This fluid is the lifeline of a successful conception. It acts as a nest for sperm entering the cervix during intercourse. Thanks to the cervical mucus, sperm can stay alive here for up to 6 days. As a result, a woman can get pregnant nearly a week after having sex. This allows time for an egg to be fertilized and boost the chances of conception.
Cervical Mucus Before Period
5 days before the periods, maximum amount of cervical mucus is produced by the cervix. This time the cervical mucus is clear, colorless and translucent. It is elastic and can be stretched between two finger tips. This changed cervical mucus is termed as the fertile cervical mucus.
After ovulation or expulsion of ovum or egg from the ovary, the cervix becomes dry for a few days, after which the secretion of mucus starts again. At this time, it is like raw egg white – very thick and sticky. It has a fixed shape and stays still. It cannot be stretched between two fingertips. The color is white or yellowish and opaque. This cervical mucus after the periods is termed as the infertile cervical mucus.
Fertile Cervical Mucus
Fertile cervical mucus is secreted from the cervix before periods. Change in thickness, color and texture of the cervical mucus indicates days closer to menstruation. During this phase, estrogen catalyzes the cervical glands to secrete more cervical mucus.
The mucus creates a perfect environment for sperm survival. Inside this fluid the sperm can live longer and can swim easily. The pH of mucus is slightly acidic, which protects the sperm from its surrounding and death due to body heat within the cervix. A large amount of cervical fluid before ovulation sets the platform for an easier fertilization.
This fertile cervical mucus allows sperms to be alive up until its expulsion during ovulation. The sperm waits for the egg and then fertilizes it when it is released. If intercourse takes place during this time, then the chances of getting pregnant are highest.
After the ovulation, the cervical mucus becomes dry and the quality of the mucus changes from fertile to infertile immediately after ovulation. The pH level of the mucus is turned into more acidic after the ovulation. This results in death of all the remaining sperms present inside it, making it the least suitable time to try and conceive.
If you are trying to conceive, check for the fertility cervical mucus once every day a week before expected period date. When you check it daily, you can easily notice the change of the cervical mucus from infertile to fertile based on the above mentioned features and you can plan your pregnancy accordingly.