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Tools of the Trade

Ok…so what do you need to TTC? 

The two cheapest are the BBT Thermometer and the Ferning Microscope (Click on the links for pictures).  All of these things can be found on Amazon.com or Ebay

 There are actually two kinds of thermometers- both of which work effectively.

  • Glass BBT therm.-  This one is the classic one that takes about 5 minutes in the morning to get a full accurate reading.  Once you’ve recorded your temp you need to shake it down so that it is ready for the next use
  • Digital BBT-  This is the one that most women use simply because it takes about a minute.  It normally saves the last temp in the memory so you can take your temp half asleep (I’ve been known to temp IN my sleep but that’s another story for another day).  In most instances a BBT that only goes one decimal place is fine, but the one that goes two decimals will give you a more accurate temp.  If you are the kind of woman who has a very subtle temp change then the second one is your best option.

The Ferning Micoscope- (<<this will show you the progression).  This-unlike OPK’s- focuses on estrogen in the follicular phase.  The science behind this one is that in the morning…before you brush your teeth or drink anything you would put some of your saliva onto the plate.  When it dries (about 7-10 mins) you look and see if there is a crystallization through the microscope.  When there is a full fern it indicates that you will most likely ovulate within 24-48 hours.  All you need to do afterward is rinse the plate and its ready for use again. 

Other (more expensive) options are:

  • OPK’s-  now these measure LH and from the positive its the same window of 24-48 hours.  They have the midstream and the dippers (lol…you pee in a cup and dip the stick).  If I were to go this route though..I would go with the digital OPK (by Clearblue) because instead of trying to figure out if the line is darker than the control—you just wait for the smiley face.
  • OPK Monitors–  To be quite honest with all of you…I’m not exactly sure what the process for this is because I never looked into it.  The monitors are quite pricey and the sticks for them (I hear) are quite a number on the wallet as well. 
  • OvuWatch- Umm.. I’ve not heard any good things about this particular product.  Its expensive and from what I hear on the grapevine not very accurate.  however–it is a tool so I put it on here.  What I understand is there is a sensor underneath the face.  As I find info about it..I will place it here.

One product that is great for those with not much cervical fluid (or if you just like the lube) is Pre-Seed.  While most lubricants will make the environment much more hazardous to sperm–this particular product does the opposite and helps make the environment “more friendly”.  Its a good investment.

Charting Websites:

As you gather information you need to place it somewhere right?  So here is a list of the sites out there.

Ovusoft-  Most know this one from Taking Charge of Your Fertility by Toni Weschler.  If you buy the book the software comes with it and you get a free 15 day trial.  Even if you don’t purchase the book the website offers the same trial offter. After that I believe its a one-time fee.

FertilityCircle.com-  This site is good for strictly FAM monitoring.  The thing that is different about this site is that it will send you monthly reminders on the best time for you (based on your cycle) to perform a self breast exam.  If you are anything like me, you forget if left to your own devices.  And if you don’t input your information it will send you a reminder to do so.

MyMontlyCycles.com-  This one puts your information in calendar form.  This was hard for me personally to adjust to, but it works for other women out there.

PreConceptions.com.au –  This is the only charting site based out of Australia.  Its brand new as of September 07.  The basic charting is in Celsius, but Fahrenheit is also available.  The software is reliable and with growth the services will continue to improve.  You can also purchase OPK’s and HPT’s directly from the site.  All orders ship from AU so if you are based there you wouldn’t have to wait as long as with some other sites.

FertilityFriend.com-  The charting service is free and reliable for the most part.  I have had some differences compared with other charting software but it is good.

One Comment leave one →
  1. caly permalink
    August 27, 2008 5:44 pm

    thanks for putting this all in one place, short and sweet.

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