Not many women pay attention to cervical mucus. Until you see blood coming out of the vagina, you don’t feel the need for worrying. Despite this, it is a fact that cervical mucus tells a lot about your sexual well-being. The changes of ovaries and uterus have parallelism. They happen in a similar pattern every month until there is pregnancy. Cervical mucus changes tell you a lot about the stage of menstrual cycle. Cervical mucus before period is thick and gooey. This is not fertile and prevents sperms entering the vagina.
The fluid that you often see in your knickers tells you a lot about your fertility. Sometimes it better than ovulation test kits available in the market. Indeed, cervical mucus before period is the method to help women with irregular period predict their ovulation date.
During the menses phase, one cannot distinguish between blood and cervical mucus. Proliferative phase leads to the growth of uterine lining and causes changes in the amount of cervical mucus. The discharge is watery. During ovulation stringy egg white cervical mucus indicates the fertility period.
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How does cervical mucus change during menstrual cycle?
The changes in cervical mucus are reliable indicators of particular stage of menstrual cycle. Every stage of menstrual cycle has a specific kind of cervical mucus characteristic. You can use clean fingers or tissue paper to check the type of cervical mucus. Take clean fingers inside your vagina and take a sample of fluid from there. Stretch it between your fingers and see if it forms string or feels like crème.
You can even use a tissue paper during the days when the mucus is profuse watery discharge. The cervical mucus changes due to fall and rise of estrogen and progesterone hormones during the cycle. There are six stages of cervical mucus during menstrual cycle:
- Dry days cervical mucus: After period the cervical mucus production goes down. There is almost no production of mucus because the hormone levels are basal. The estrogen-progesterone hormones are responsible for changes in cervical mucus. What the estrogen levels rise the discharge becomes watery and progesterone makes it thick. During dry days either kind of hormone does not rise. The period of dry days lasts for 3 days or so and later the cervical mucus changes.
- Thick sticky discharge: When the estrogen levels start rising gradually the discharge is still sticky. This also lasts for another 4-5 days. After this, the fertility window begins. Cervical mucus before ovulation begins getting clear. Thick sticky discharge is a sign that estrogen levels are still not enough and so ovulation cannot be near. For women with a longer menstrual cycle, this helps determine ovulation. They cannot simply consider 14th day because their cycle is longer.
- Profuse watery cervical mucus: As the estrogen levels pick and ovulation nears the amount of cervical mucus increases. The consistency is watery and you feel like you are wetting your panties. Profuse watery mucus is because of estrogen peak before ovulation.
- Egg white cervical mucus stage: The most reliable indicator of ovulation is the Egg white cervical mucus, EWCM. This is stringy, white and semi-transparent vaginal discharge during ovulation. One can use fingers to withdraw some amount and stretch it between fingers. As it forms strings it indicates that most fertile during this period.
- Creamy cervical mucus: Creamy cervical mucus after ovulation is not stringy. It is a sign that your fertility window period is over. Creamy cervical mucus is because the egg cyst is releasing a lot of progesterone hormone. This hormone makes the discharge thick and creamy. The water content of cervical mucus goes on reducing as period approaches. The amount of cervical discharge before period also greatly reduces.
- Cervical mucus before period: The cervical mucus immediately before period is thick and gooey. It is like a cheesy mass. If it has smell or color, then you need to consult a doctor. If you see blood in your cervical mucus before period, then you may be having some internal problem. Taking birth control pills or getting an IUD changes the kind of discharge to prevent pregnancy.
Stages of cervical mucus between menses
- The follicular stage of ovary where the next egg begins maturation overlaps the period. During this stage, the cervical mucus is dense and doesn’t allow any sperm to pass through it. Though you may consider it unnecessary from the point of view of contraception but this indicates your fertility stage. The cervical mucus helps in removing the exfoliated cells during menses. The other function during this time is to prevent any infections due to the bloody discharge. Blood invites many microbes and the constant wetness is ideal for their growth. The cervical mucus regulates the good bacteria and prevents any harmful growth.
- During ovulation, the cervical mucus glands increase their functioning. The main function of this stage is promoting fertilization. The increased cervical mucus is a sign of fertility. It allows penetrative sex for delivering the sperms inside. The mucus helps sperms travel up to the tubes.
- Following this is the luteal phase that maintains the walls of uterus. This is for the possibility of pregnancy that may happen if fertilization was successful. During this phase the cervical mucus becomes creamy.
- Cervical mucus before period is thick and can be a sign that pregnancy did not occur. The body prepares for shedding the lining of uterus.
Serious causes of cervical mucus before period
Cervical mucus by itself can never be a problem. The absence of cervical mucus creates problems such as uncomfortable intercourse. You need a lot of lubrication for smooth intercourse. Reduced amount of discharge prevents attainment of sexual pleasure.
If you have blood in cervical mucus then you may be having some serious problems. Blood in cervical mucus, even when asymptomatic needs medical attention.
Serious causes of cervical mucus before period may be when it has a bad odor.
The gooey or cheesy texture of discharge is not normal.