What is basal body temperature (BBT)?
Your BBT is the temperature you take when your body is at a complete rest. Throughout the month your BBT will change depending on a number of factors, including your hormones. It is the lowest measurement of the body’s temperature and used as a baseline. Day one of your cycle, your temperature should drop with a period and remains lower in the first half of your cycle. Just before you ovulate, your temperature will drop slightly and then rise once ovulation occurs, this is because the hormone progesterone takes over for the second half of your cycle and causes your temperature to rise. If you are pregnant then your temperature will remain high because progesterone will stay high.
How to take your BBT?
You must take your temperature first thing in the morning.
Must have had at least 4 hours continuous sleep.
It is essential that you take your temperature around the same time every day, within half an hour window.
Temperature must be taken before you get out of bed, speak, go to the bathroom, or have a drink. Any sort of activity begins to raise the body temperature.
Temperature can be taken under the tongue.
Use the same thermometer throughout the cycle.
Tracking your chart
This can be done either manually on paper, or using fertility calendars, software or apps such as Fertility Friend app, (however check the apps terms and conditions as some apps report your information to other companies like Facebook). Attached is a copy of what a manual BBT chart looks like that I send to my patients. Ideally you should start charting your BBT on the first day of your period and continue through the whole cycle.
What I am looking for
Temperature will rise and fall throughout your cycle, however you should notice a slight dip just as ovulation occurs, then the temperature will rise at least 0.2-0.3C with is maintained for at least 3 days afterwards. I am also looking that your temperature stays consistently higher in the second half of the cycle, and that your body temperature isn’t too low or high or there aren’t too many fluctuations throughout the month.
It is also important to notice your cervical mucous throughout your cycle. Your cervical mucous should change to a sticky egg white consistency around ovulation time, this is the body assisting sperm to travel up the cervix. Your cervical mucous can tell you when you are about to ovulate.
When to have intercourse
It is too late after you ovulate. So intercourse should happen after you finish your period every 2-3 days until you ovulate.
Other factors that can impact BBT charting
When tracking your chart it is important to take notice anything that may impact your body temperature such as:
Fighting with a spouse
How I use this information with Chinese medicine?
The information I see in your BBT charts, assists me in determining what treatment you may need, whether your temperature is too high, spiking all throughout the month, or too low in the second half of your cycle. Once you have made a booking you can bring in your BBT chart to your initial consultation, which can provide some additional information before we start treatment.
Making your initial appointment
You can either book online at this website, or feel free to contact me on 0401 553 782.