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Fertility Awareness: Basic Info

Fertility Awareness

Fertility awareness-based methods—or natural family planning—are all about tracking your menstrual cycle to determine the days that you can get pregnant. The tricky part is actually knowing when those days are. To do that, you’ll need to pay very close attention to your body and its patterns. Here we list all the different ways you can monitor your day-to-day fertility.


For those who may choose a different way to prevent pregnancy, please know that The Right Time health centers stock all methods of contraception and offer free or low-cost contraception to those who need it.  

Different Types

  • Standard Days Method (SDM)

    Standard Days (SDM)

    If your menstrual cycle is between 26 and 32 days long, you can use this method to record your periods and determine when you can’t get pregnant.

  • TwoDay Method (TDM)

    TwoDay (TDM)

    This is another method where you observe cervical secretions to see when you’re fertile.

  • Cervical Mucus Method

    Cervical Mucus

    Your body secretes a distinct kind of goo when you’re most fertile. This method is all about observing your cervical mucus.

  • Basal Body Temperature (BBT)

    Body Temp (BBT)

    Use this method to chart your body temperature every single morning to determine whether or not you’re ovulating.

  • Symptothermal Method


    There are many signs that communicate when you’re fertile and this method tracks several of them at once, including how open your cervix feels.

  • Lactational Amenhorrea Method (LAM)

    Lactational (LAM)

    Breastfeeding naturally suppresses fertility. This method works if you’ve just had a baby and are breastfeeding in a very specific way.


You want to get to know your body better

In addition to using Fertility Awareness as birth control, tracking your period can be a great way to get to know your body better, notice changes, and understand your cycle.

You wouldn’t mind getting pregnant

Failure rates are kinda high if not used correctly—so if getting pregnant would be disastrous for you and you’re not a total pro at fertility awareness, choose another method or use a backup like condoms while you’re getting the hang of it.

Total self-discipline

Both you and your partner need to be completely down with the program. You also need to know your body really well.

You’re okay with having a time-out from sex or using another method

If you’re not totally cool with taking a break from sex or using another non-hormonal method during your fertile time every month, fertility awareness-based methods aren’t for you.

You want a method with no side effects

Many people who use this method want something that doesn’t affect their bodies.

No prescription necessary

If you don’t want to use hormones, this is one option.

Don’t take our word for it. Check out the videos above to hear people talk about their experiences with fertility awareness-based methods.

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The Right Time Health Centers

Our partner health centers are focused on you. They provide access to all methods of birth control and free or low-cost birth control to those who need it.