Like I promised; why is cervical fluid so important?
Many women are drawn to temperature when they start using the sympto-thermal method of fertility awareness because it is:
- There is only one thing you are looking for (a jump)
- Shows you almost definitively that you have, indeed, ovulated
These are all really wonderful aspects of taking your temperature, and the reason that I believe that the sympto-thermal method is superior to the ovulation (mucous only) method.
But what are the problems with relying on temperature over cervical fluid?
- Cervical fluid warns you when ovulation is coming, temperature only tells you when it is past. This is an issue for a few reasons. First, if you are trying to get pregnant you would want to have sex before ovulation happens, because soon after your egg is dead. Next, cervical fluid is necessary for sperm survival and movement, so knowing when your cervical fluid is beginning to be produced tells you when your fertile window opens for birth control purposes.
- Cervical fluid is less likely to be interrupted by outside factors. A few things that can mess with your cervical fluid include medications, vaginal discharge due to infection, coming off the pill, etc. These are entirely less likely to happen a lot or be normal occurrences than say, drinking alcohol, cuddling when you don’t usually, or the variety of other things that can affect your temperature.
- Less safe time! If you are relying only on temperature, or just can’t get the hang of your cervical fluid you will have far less days you are considered safe. This is especially true if you have long cycles.
Overall, Cervical fluid is going to be more important because it is actually needed for fertility, rather than just something that happens as a result of your fertility (Ok, so if we get down to the nitty gritty we do need that increased temp to help keep all of them growies happy, but I think you get my drift). It’s best to have both, but if you could only have one you would be better off using only cervical fluid.