Can You Get Pregnant after Ovulation?

Every month, women ovulate during their menstrual cycle. Although women can technically get pregnant after ovulation, it is not very likely. Ovulation is the point in the menstrual cycle where you are at your peak level of fertility. After ovulation, you can only get pregnant if the egg is still remaining or if you ovulate again. To gain a better understanding of your chances of getting pregnant, it is important to learn how to calculate your fertile days and your chance from day to day of getting pregnant.can-you-get-pregnant-after-ovulation

Is It Possible to Get Pregnant After Ovulation?

Once you have ovulated, the follicle releases an egg and you have about 12 to 48 hours where you can get pregnant. If male sperm fertilizes the egg during this time, a pregnancy will occur. Sperm are capable of living for up to five days in the female body when cervical mucus is present to give them a comfortable environment. Normally, sperm will travel to the fallopian tubes where they can wait to fertilize the egg as soon as it is released by the follicle. Once the sperm has been ejaculated, it will take six hours to swim from the cervix, through the uterus and into the fallopian tubes if it is in good health. Due to the timing of ovulation and sperm’s ability to remain in the uterus, it is possible to get pregnant for the first one or two days after ovulation.

In this list, we cover your statistical chances of getting pregnant on any day during the menstrual cycle.

5 days prior to ovulation: 0 percent
4 days prior to ovulation: 11 percent
3 days prior to ovulation: 15 percent
2 days prior to ovulation: 20 percent
1 day prior to ovulation: 26 percent
The day of ovulation: 15 percent
1 day after ovulation: 0.09 percent
2 days after ovulation: 0.05 percent
3 days after ovulation: 0 percent

As you can see from this list, your chances of getting pregnant increase up until the day before ovulation and then drop drastically following ovulation.

Calculating Your Fertile Days

If you can learn how to track your cervix height, basal body temperature and cervical mucus, you can predict when ovulation will occur. In addition, there are cheap home tests that you can take that will tell you if you are currently ovulating.

Figuring Out Your Calendar

The average menstrual cycle is 28 days, and women typically ovulate 10 to 14 days before their period starts. This means that the average woman ovulates around day 14 to day 18 of their menstrual cycle. If your menstrual cycle is longer or shorter than average, you can just subtract 10 to 14 from the length to figure out when you are likely to be ovulating. Your egg is only available for fertilization for about 12 to 24 hours, so it is important that sperm is present at or before this time period. For women with a normal menstrual cycle, having sex every other day from day 12 to day 18 can help you to become pregnant. If you are trying not to get pregnant, remember that sperm can live in your body for up to five days, so you do not want to have unprotected sex prior to ovulation or for several days afterward.



Is It Possible to Ovulate Two Times in a Single Menstrual Cycle?

Whenever your FSH hormones increase, the follicles are stimulated to release an egg and you become fertile. This mixture of hormones is designed to push your body through the menstrual cycle and are at their peak for just 24 hours. After ovulation, your hormone levels immediately start to drop and your body begins to prepare for menstruation.

Although it is unlikely, it is possible for two follicles to release an egg during ovulation. If this occurs, then you will have fraternal twins. Roughly 1 to 3 percent of pregnancies that are carried to term have fraternal twins. It is widely thought that one out of eight pregnancies actually have two fertilized eggs, but these pregnancies do not result in twins because one embryo does not last longer than a couple of weeks. When this happens, the body reabsorbs the embryo naturally.

What Happens to Your Body After Ovulation?

If you are pregnant, the egg will have been fertilized by the sperm to make a zygote. This zygote will spend five days traveling down the fallopian tube to reach the uterus. Once there, it will divide into a blastocyst and implant at about eight to ten days post-ovulation. Until the blastocyst implants on the uterine wall, you will have noticed very few changes in the body. At implantation, you may experience some spotting that you may mistake for menstruation. Once it has implanted, the blastocyst will begin to grow and release hormones that seal the cervix while signaling the endometrium to thicken.

If you do not get pregnant during ovulation, the egg will start to move down the fallopian tubes within two days. At this time, it will disintegrate and be reabsorbed by the body. The corpus luteum in your body will keep producing progesterone for 12 to 14 days, but it will ultimately stop and blood will begin flowing from the uterus. As this happens, your period will start.

31 COMMENTS

  1. My period was on December 27, it comes every 30 days and it lasts 5 days. I had unprotected sex on Jan 14-15. Was I ovulating at the time? Or did I miss the window of opportunity to get pregnant?

    • It is possible that you could have become pregnant. Ovulation windows are different for each person. You may find some benefit by speaking with a medical professional. Take a pregnancy test five days after your normal period date for results. Good luck, Renee!

  2. Please help! I have very adverse affects to birth control so I am not able to take it. My period was from December 29th- January 1st, my ovulation day was supposed to be January 12th and we had sex with my husband on the 14th. We haven’t used protection for over 6 years… How likely is it that I could be pregnant?

    • It is possible that you are pregnant. Some couples go years without birth control and become pregnant. Continue to monitor the symptoms that you are experiencing. If you find that you are have other signs of pregnancy, then take a pregnancy test five days after your normal period date. Because of your circumstances, you may want to make an appointment with a medical professional. They will be better able to answer your questions. Best of luck, Kayla!

  3. My last period started on Dec25, however I had unprotected sex this morning. According to my calculator I have already ovulated between Jan6- Jan10, is it possible that u might become pregnant?

    • If you had unprotected sex, then it is possible that you are pregnant. There are certain times during your cycle that it is unlikely to cause pregnancy, however it is still possible. Continue to monitor the experiences that you are having. If you find that you are having additional signs of pregnancy, then take a pregnancy test five days after your normal period date. Best of luck, Kay!

  4. My last period started on Dec 25 & lasted 5days. I had unprotected sex lastnight . Is it possible that I might get pregnant ? If my ovulation calculator is right I should already ovulated & not get pregnant but I’m just not sure.

    • If you had unprotected sex, then it is possible that you are pregnant. There are certain times during your cycle that it is unlikely to cause pregnancy, however it is still possible. Continue to monitor the experiences that you are having. If you find that you are having additional signs of pregnancy, then take a pregnancy test five days after your normal period date. Best of luck, Kay!

  5. My last period was 12/08/16. I am not on birth control, and had unprotected sex on 12/27/16. Today is 01/14/16. According to my calendar I am 1 week late for my expected period. (My periods are pretty normal: about (28-30) days depending on how many days are in that month). I have several urine tests that has come back negative (even the urine test at the clinic yesterday 01/13/16 was negative). Is it too early or am I just late? Thanks in advance. -Ashley

    • As it is possible that you are pregnant, you certainly would be benefited in taking another pregnancy test in five days. Continue to monitor the experiences that you are having as you move forward. If you want to speak with your doctor again at that time, then make an appointment. For now, reduce stress on your body and enjoy life. Have a great day, Ashley!

  6. I had unprotected sex the day after my predicted ovulation day. (Vaginal mucus was egg white like) I had my 4th miscarriage 23rd December. What are the chances of pregnancy?

    • It is possible that you are pregnant. Continue to monitor the changes that you are experiencing. If you find that you have additional pregnancy symptoms, then it is more likely that you are pregnant. Take a pregnancy test five days after your normal period date. If you want to make an appointment with a doctor to confirm your findings, then do so. Best of luck, Liz!

      • Thanks!
        I haven’t had a period since 15th November. I’m not sure if I had a period whilst having my miscarriage. I did a test the day I knew I was having another miscarriage and it came up negative so all should be back to normal now, it’s been three weeks today since I had my 4th

        • It sounds like you are in the clear. Be sure to continue to monitor your experiences. If you find that you want to speak with a doctor in the future about any questions that you may have, then do so. They will always be able to give you the information that you need. Remain positive and best of luck, Liz!

          • Thanks. I’m just not sure when my next cycle would be or when I’m due to ovulate. I’m sure I ovulated 2 days ago and I’ve had unprotected sex since that day (when it was egg white consistency) I don’t want to waste money on ovulation kits etc. I’d rather just it happen naturally

            • That sounds like a good plan–even the ovulation predictor kits are not always spot on. Relax, enjoy yourself, and it will happen. Good luck, Liz!

  7. My period started in December 11. I ovulated on December 25 , had protected sex and used the pull out method on december 26. And had sex 3 days after but he pulled out again .But I got my period on January 8. Is there still any possibility I can be pregnant ?? And just to make sure when can I take a pregnancy test ?

    • If you had your period, then you are not pregnant. It may be possible that you have experienced implantation bleeding, though it is unlikely. Precum has the potential to cause pregnancy, though it is unlikely to do so. If you have pregnancy symptoms in the future, then take a pregnancy test. Best of luck, Mary!

        • It is unlikely that you are pregnant. If you want to prevent a pregnancy from happening however, it is important to always use contraceptive methods like birth control medication and condoms each time you have sex.

  8. My period came on either December 15th or 16th of 2016. I have very normal periods. They typically come between those days each month. I calculated that my cylce is about 31 days long. My husband and I had unprotecred sex on the 2nd of January 2017. Most websites said I either ovulated on the 1st or 2nd of January depending on the day I started. Cold I possibly be pregnant?

    • It is possible that you could be pregnant, but you probably won’t have any symptoms until after you miss your period. You have about a one in four chance of getting pregnant on any month if you are not using protection. Most couples will conceive within the first year of trying. Hopefully, this month will be your lucky month! Wait another week, take a pregnancy test if your period does not start and hope for the best! Good luck, Ashley!

  9. I had sex 2 or 3 days after ovulation and now I have light spotting I’m about 4 days from my period could I be pregnant

    • If it is just light bleeding, then it could possibly be implantation. While you normally ovulate around the middle of the month, your body could have ovulated later or earlier this month. While it is more likely that your period just started early and is just slightly irregular this month, it would probably be a good idea to take a pregnancy test in another four days just to be sure.

  10. I had my last period Oct. 18 Ovulated Nov 6 I know cause I was checking with Ovulation Test Kit. Had sex Nov 5, 6, 7, & 8th with my boyfriend & then had sex Nov 10 with another guy whose baby could it be? It says 3 days after ovulation the chances are 0?! Please help.

    • It seems like you may have commented twice on this article. I have to answer every comment individually, so it may take a little while for it to be posted and answered. If you do not see your comment and response right away, do not worry because you will. Read through my last response and let me know if you have any other questions. Thanks for commenting, Jasmine!

  11. I had my last period Oct. 18 Ovulated Nov 6 I know cause I was checking with Ovulation Test Kit. Had sex Nov 5, 6, 7, & 8th with my boyfriend & then had sex Nov 10 with another guy whose baby could it be? It says 3 days after ovulation the chances are 0?! Please help.

    • Ovulation test kits are fairly accurate, but they are not always perfect. It is possible that either guy could be the father of your baby. While it is most likely your boyfriend, there is no way to know outside of a genetic test.

        • It would be wise to continue to monitor your experiences. If you are concerned about who the father is, then ask them both to take a paternity test. This will clear up any questions that you have. Best of luck, Jasmine!

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