When do you Ovulate after Childbirth

One of the most commonly asked questions by a woman after giving birth is how soon will the ovulation cycle kick back into line. The truth is there is no medical certainty as to when this will happen because each woman has  unique hormone levels, and it can be difficult to predict just how soon periods will recommence after childbirth.

Sometimes menstruation will return the very next month following birth but some new mums may wait until well over 12 months. Non breastfeeding women will usually ovulate between 25 and 72 days after giving birth, with an average time period of 45 days for 80% of women.

It is important to know that if you are not planning on having any more children in the immediate future, that ovulation will occur two weeks before menstruation. This means that if you are having unprotected sex two weeks before your first period, then you can still fall pregnant. It is always best to use birth control in the interim and not wait for the first signs that ovulation has begun again.

It is a common myth that breastfeeding your baby will stave off the inevitable, but my sister is living proof that this method cannot always be relied upon. Born just 11 months after me, my sister was conceived when my mother was still breastfeeding me.

If you are going to rely on breast feeding as a method of birth control then it is important that you feed your baby at least every four hours during the day and every six hours at night, providing 90 to 95 percent of food through breast milk. By doing this the chances of ovulation returning is reduced to a 2% chance. However, f the baby has reached 6 months or over, then you are advised to seek advice for the use of other methods of birth control.

Once menstruation returns during lactation, new mums will find that the frequency of ovular cycles progressively increases and they may have irregular periods, but will only return to normal function once weaning has occurred.

It is also important to know that your body will become ready to ovulate whether you have had a natural delivery or not. Mums who have had c sections should be aware of the fact that it will take at least three months for their scar to heal and that they should wait at least a year until they conceive again.