Ovulation Cramps

Facts about Ovulation Cramps

Women who are attempting to conceive may use any of several indicators that predict their most fertile times; even a discomfort such as ovulation cramps can help along those lines.


Ovulation is a time when a mature egg leaves the ovary to traverse the fallopian tube with the ultimate goal of being fertilized and reaching the uterus.  At the beginning of this process, hormones stimulate follicles, or sacs, on the ovaries to mature.  As the egg grows, the follicle stretches to accommodate its increasing size.  At maturity, the egg bursts from the follicle, along with some follicular fluid and a small amount of blood.  When this happens, some women will feel anything from a slight twinge to severe pain; the result of ovulation cramps.

While the discomfort for some women can be extreme, the ovulation cramps generally only last a short while.  Typically, the pain may be felt anywhere from 6 hours for most women and up to 48 hours in rare cases.  An over the counter pain medication may prove to be helpful in easing the pain, as well as a heating pad or soaking in a warm bath.


The pain felt with ovulation cramps can occur on either side of the lower abdomen.  There may also be slight bleeding and stomach upset or nausea.  These effects are generally not serious and do not usually require a doctor’s advise unless prolonged bleeding or excessive pain is present.

The good news is that these symptoms of ovulation cramps can signal fertility.  When the cramps are first felt, it is probably an indication that the mature egg has left the ovary.  This is the optimal time for the egg to be fertilized and conception to take place.  Being aware of when these cramps will take place through matching the calculation of ovulation and the onset of the pain will help women to have greater success in conceiving.

Some women have noticed the presence of pain after ovulation; cramps that range from very light to moderate to debilitating.  Often, these are the result of contractions of the uterus, as it prepares for menstruation.  These cramps are also not a cause of concern in most cases, and can be relieved using over the counter pain medicines, heating pads and by resting for the duration.  If the cramps are accompanied by fever, vomiting, dizziness or if a pregnancy is suspected, then a doctor should be consulted immediately to determine the cause for the malady.

There is no doubt that ovulation cramps can be uncomfortable and, in some case, downright painful.  However, they can also be indications that your body is doing exactly what it should, and pinpoint an optimal time for conception; making them helpful when trying to plan a pregnancy, as well.