Ovulation is an act of releasing a mature egg from an ovary. Every month a woman's ovary produces several follicles under the influence of menstrual hormones. Of these, only one attains maturity and gets released from its follicle. When the follicle ruptures to release the egg, it may trigger slight pain, called ovulation pain. Although, not many women are aware of this condition, it is pretty common. There are usually no harmful implications of this condition. However, it is very much possible to mistake this condition for some other medical ailment and vice-a-verse.
What is Ovulation Pain
Ovulation pain or mittelschmerz is a condition characterized by release of mature egg from an ovary. When your ovary releases an egg, the follicle ruptures and the egg bursts from it. The egg then begins its journey downward, through the fallopian tubes towards the uterus. During this time, the fallopian tubes move rhythmically, so as to assist the egg in reaching its destination. This causes mild pain in the abdominal region. The pain is commonly termed as ovulation pain.
Where does It Occur
It usually occurs on the side of the ovary which releases the egg. If one month you experience pain on the right side, the next month you may experience it on the left. However, this is not a rule, as you may ovulate from one ovary on subsequent times. Many women experience the pain on the right side in abdominal area. The location of pain is just inside the hipbone.
What is It Like
Many women complain of a pinching feeling inside the abdomen when they are ovulating. Pinching feeling is caused due to rupture of a follicle, whereas the rhythmic movement of fallopian tubes causes cramping like sensation. Most women experience menstrual cramps like feeling when they are ovulating.
How Long Does It Last
Ovulation pain may last for a few minutes in some women to a few hours in others. On an average, it may last for about 6 to 10 hours. Yet, some women may only experience them for about 20 minutes while others may have pain for up to 2 days.
When does It Occur
Ovulation time may differ for each woman. For a 28 day menstrual cycle, ovulation occurs on 13th or 14th day. However, this is just a rough estimate and may still vary for other women who have 28 day cycle. As menstrual cycle varies in length and duration, it is difficult to predict general ovulation time. It could be as early as on the 10th day of your cycle or as late as 19th day. Generally, you can say that ovulation pain occurs about two weeks prior to your impending period.
What are Other Symptoms Associated with It
If you are in a habit of charting your basal body temperature (BBT), you will notice that there is a surge in your BBT when you ovulate. The surge remains for a day or two, after which the temperature starts falling. Other sure shot sign of ovulation is change in color and consistency of cervical mucus. Around the time of ovulation, it becomes clear, slippery and of the same consistency as an uncooked egg white.
How Can You Treat Ovulation Pain
Ovulation pain usually needs no treatment, as the pain subsides on its own. However, if you experience severe pain then you may rely on over the counter medications such as Tylenol. Hot water baths, heating pads also help in managing painful ovulation.
Other problems which may induce symptoms similar to painful ovulation are endometriosis, ovarian cysts, ectopic pregnancy, appendicitis etc. Hence, make sure you confirm the cause of ovulation pain as ovulation only. This can be done with the help of an ovulation kit.