Women, as we get older, sometimes have a decreased ability to conceive due to age AND an increased chance for miscarriage especially in the late 30's into the 40's. Some women just have a weak cervix too, and perhaps this woman just feels it was the Mirena that caused it. People get some funny ideas sometimes and I have heard a lot of strange explanations people have thought up as reasons for why their health is what it is. I'm sure there are many women who go on to conceive and carry just fine after IUDs including Mirena. Just be patient and keep trying. Some women get pregnant easier than others. For some reason it always seems easier to get pregnant when you are not trying. There are only a few really fertile days in your cycle and it is good to learn the signs of when you are fertile because contrary to what some girls think, you cant "feel" ovulation. For most women it comes in the second week of their cycle but it can be different for each woman and even from month to month. It helps to chart your cycle, check your cervical mucus and to take your basal temp.
Being aware of your menstrual cycle and the changes in your body that happen during this time can help you know when you are most likely to get pregnant. See how the menstrual cycle works below.
Day 1 starts with the first day of your period. This occurs after hormone levels drop at the end of the previous cycle, signaling blood and tissues lining the uterus (womb) to break down and shed from the body. Bleeding lasts about 5 days.
Usually by Day 7, bleeding has stopped. Leading up to this time, hormones cause fluid-filled pockets called follicles to develop on the ovaries. Each follicle contains an egg.
Between Day 7 and 11, one follicle will continue to develop and reach maturity. The lining of the uterus starts to thicken, waiting for a fertilized egg to implant there. The lining is rich in blood and nutrients.
Around Day 14 (in a 28-day cycle), hormones cause the mature follicle to burst and release an egg from the ovary, a process called ovulation.
Over the next few days, the egg travels down the fallopian tube towards the uterus. If a sperm unites with the egg here, the fertilized egg will continue down the fallopian tube and attach to the lining of the uterus.
If the egg is not fertilized, hormone levels will drop around Day 25. This signals the next menstrual cycle to begin. The egg will break apart and be shed with the next period.
The average menstrual cycle lasts 28 days. But normal cycles can vary from 21 to 35 days. The amount of time before ovulation occurs is different in every woman and even can be different from month to month in the same woman, varying from 13 to 20 days long. Learning about this part of the cycle is important because it is when ovulation and pregnancy can occur. After ovulation, every woman (unless she has a health problem that affects her periods or becomes pregnant) will have a period within 14 to 16 days. Below I will explain the three most common ways to chart your fertility. If you follow these methods it shouldnt take too long to become pregnant. If you follow these methods for a year and still are not pregnant then you need to have your gynecologist evaluate the reason why.
Basal temperature Method
Basal body temperature is your temperature at rest as soon as you awake in the morning. A woman's basal body temperature rises slightly with ovulation. So by recording this temperature daily for several months, you'll be able to predict your most fertile days.
Basal body temperature differs slightly from woman to woman. Anywhere from 96 to 98 degrees Fahrenheit orally is average before ovulation. After ovulation most women have an oral temperature between 97 and 99 degrees Fahrenheit. The rise in temperature can be a sudden jump or a gradual climb over a few days.
Usually a woman's basal body temperature rises by only 0.4 to 0.8 degrees Fahrenheit. To detect this tiny change, women must use a basal body thermometer. These thermometers are very sensitive. Most pharmacies sell them for about $10. You can then record your temperature on a calendar or you can go online and find special charts to print off. I find that a caledar works just fine-you can chart both your temp and your cervical mucus (I will explain the process for checking cervical mucus later)
The rise in temperature doesn't show exactly when the egg is released. But almost all women have ovulated within three days after their temperatures spike. Body temperature stays at the higher level until your period starts.
You are most fertile and most likely to get pregnant:
Two to three days before your temperature hits the highest point (ovulation), and
12 to 24 hours after ovulation.
A man's sperm can live for up to three days in a woman's body. The sperm can fertilize an egg at any point during that time. So if you have unprotected sex a few days before ovulation there is a chance of becoming pregnant.
Many things can affect basal body temperature. To get the most useful chart you should take your temperature every morning at about the same time. Things that can alter your temperature include:
Drinking alcohol the night before
Smoking cigarettes the night before
Getting a poor night's sleep
Having a fever
Doing anything in the morning before you take your temperature -- including going to the bathroom and talking on the phone
This involves recording your menstrual cycle on a calendar for eight to 12 months. The first day of your period is Day 1. Circle Day 1 on the calendar. The length of your cycle may vary from month to month. So write down the total number of days it lasts each time. Using this record, you can find the days you are most fertile in the months ahead:
To find out the first day when you are most fertile, subtract 18 from the total number of days in your shortest cycle. Take this new number and count ahead that many days from the first day of your next period. Draw an X through this date on your calendar. The X marks the first day you're likely to be fertile.
To find out the last day when you are most fertile, subtract 11 from the total number of days in your longest cycle. Take this new number and count ahead that many days from the first day of your next period. Draw an X through this date on your calendar. The time between the two Xs is your most fertile window.
This method always should be used along with other fertility awareness methods, especially if your cycles are not always the same length.
Cervical mucus method, also known as the ovulation method-this method was explained and recommended to me by a nun who had been a nurse and a college instructor of anatomy and physiology for years. She told me that she felt this was the most SURE way of getting pregnant (or avoiding pregnancy in those who choose not to use hormonal birth control or if their religion calls for not using any kind of hormonal or barrier methods of birth control, which is consistent with the Catholic religion, and this is a method for these women to use that doesnt go against their beliefs and restrictions of that belief.)
This involves being aware of the changes in your cervical mucus throughout the month. The hormones that control the menstrual cycle also change the kind and amount of mucus you have before and during ovulation. Right after your period, there are usually a few days when there is no mucus present or "dry days." As the egg starts to mature, mucus increases in the vagina, appears at the vaginal opening, and is white or yellow and cloudy and sticky. The greatest amount of mucus appears just before ovulation. During these "wet days" it becomes clear and slippery, like raw egg whites. Sometimes it can be stretched apart. This is when you are most fertile. About four days after the wet days begin the mucus changes again. There will be much less and it becomes sticky and cloudy. You might have a few more dry days before your period returns. Describe changes in your mucus on a calendar. Label the days, "Sticky," "Dry," or "Wet." You are most fertile at the first sign of wetness after your period or a day or two before wetness begins.
To most accurately track your fertility, use a combination of all three methods. This is called the symptothermal (SIMP-toh-thur-muhl) method. You can also purchase over-the-counter ovulation kits or fertility monitors to help find the best time to conceive. These kits work by detecting surges in a specific hormone called luteinizing hormone, which triggers ovulation but these can be expensive depending on your finances. Be patient and hang in there! Hopefully this will help and at this time next year you will have a new little bundle either in your arms or on the way!