Knowledge on the menstrual cycle for most women is limited enough that they are sure it comes once a month and usually gets attention when the lack of such may or may not indicate pregnancy. The menstrual cycle is the way by which the female body optimizes its self for reproduction by shedding the lining of the uterus and replacing it with a new sheath of cells that is ideal and safe for a fertilized egg to settle upon.

Women, start getting their periods on the 12th year of their life and continues on till menopause when the female body cannot conceive and looses function to mostly age related symptoms. The menstrual cycle is counted from the first day of menstrual bleeding which closely corresponds to the hormonal cycle within a woman’s body. The menstrual phase typically lasts 1 to 4 days followed by the follicular phase or also called the proliferative phase that lasts for about 9 days. The next phase is the ovulation phase best time to use ovulation predictors when the body has finished preparing the necessary organs for the release of the egg and lasts typically for a day the following two days is the best time for conception for it is when the egg travels down the fallopian tubes awaiting for a sperm to fertilize it. If no pregnancy occurs, the last phase is the Leutal phase or secretory phase where the unfertilized egg is removed from the body and is discarded along with other bodily waste.

During the follicular phase, the lining of the uterus thickens due to increasing amounts of estrogen. Follicles in the ovary develop under the influence of many hormones that interact with complexity to bring out these changes. In a few days one or occasionally two follicles become dominant with the rest atrophy and die. The mature follicle releases an ovum or egg which signifies the beginning of the ovulation stage which is the optimal time for conception that lasts for 24 hours. If the ovum is not fertilized within the period it dies and is reabsorbed by the woman’s body. The body prepares itself for the implantation of the fertilized egg with the change of the uterine lining and stays ready for about two weeks which is the maximum time for a fertilized egg to travel up the uterus and implant itself on it’s walls. If fertilization does not occur, the lining of the uterus is shed automatically, again beginning the process of the menstruation cycle.

Some women who experience irregular menstruation cycles should consult with doctors for there may be serious underlying circumstances that can be treated or may need treatment. These women generally have difficulty with getting pregnant for they cannot easily predict the best time for conception so treatment and consultations should be considered to find out any problems if there are any.