The Billings ovulation method, basic pattern of infertility or simply Billings method, is a natural technique that aims to identify the fertile period of the woman from the observation of the characteristics of cervical mucus, which can be perceived right at the entrance into the vagina, thus being possible to prevent or try a pregnancy.
The presence of mucus indicates female hormonal changes and, according to characteristics, can inform the woman if there is a chance that fertilization will occur more easily and whether the body is ready or not to receive a pregnancy.
Although billings’ method is effective and useful to inform the days when one should or should not have sex, according to the couple’s wishes, it is important that condoms are still used, because in addition to being contraceptive protects from various infections that can be transmitted sexually.
How it works
Billings’ method is based on the characteristics of cervical mucus. For this, it is important that before being used in fact, the woman makes observations with the objective of identifying how is her mucus in the fertile period and in the infertile period, in addition to noting daily absence or presence of mucus, consistency and the days she had sexual intercourse.
In the fertile period, the woman usually feels wetter in the vulva region, which is the outermost part of the vagina, in addition mucus become thinner and clearer. Thus, if there is sexual intercourse during this period, fertilization and consequent pregnancy are likely to occur. However, if this does not happen, there will be hormonal discharge and menstruation, starting another cycle.
Some women report that mucus from the fertile period is similar to egg white, while others report that it is more consistent. Therefore, it is important that before there is actually application of the method, the woman knows how to recognize the consistencies of mucus during the menstrual cycle.
To prevent the woman from getting confused, whenever using the billings ovulation method should not take hormonal medications, apply spermicides, introduce objects or do internal tests in the vagina because these can cause changes in cervical mucus, making it difficult to interpret the woman.
However, more experienced women who use this method for months in a row may be more likely to identify changes in their cervical mucus that may be caused by external situations such as these or even diseases.
How to Avoid Pregnancy with billings method
Although many women make use of this method to get pregnant, it is also possible to use it to prevent pregnancy, being recommended for this:
- Having sex on alternate days during the days when the woman feels that her vulva is dry, which usually happens on the final days of menstruation and in the first days after menstruation;
- Do not have sex during menstruation because in this period it is not possible to verify what consistency of mucus and whether it corresponds to fertility. Although the probability of pregnancy happening after sexual intercourse during menstruation is low, the risk exists and may compromise the effectiveness of the Billings method;
- Do not have sex when feeling very wet and up to 4 days after the start of the wet feeling.
It is not recommended to have intimate contact without a condom when you feel that the vulva is naturally wet or slippery throughout the day because these signs indicate the fertile period and there is a high chance of pregnancy. Thus, during this period sexual abstinence is recommended or use condoms to prevent pregnancy.
Is the Billings ovulation method safe?
Billings’ ovulation method is safe, has scientific bases and is recommended by the World Health Organization, and, when performed correctly, protects against unwanted pregnancy by up to 99%.
However, adolescents and women who are not attentive to their daily menstrual cycle should opt for another contraceptive method, such as condom, IUD or contraceptive pill, for example to prevent unwanted pregnancy, since for the Billings method to be safe, one must be attentive to the mucus present in the vulva every day, noting its changes daily, which can be difficult for some women due to work , study or other occupations.
Advantages of using this method
The advantages of using only this method to become pregnant or not to become pregnant are:
- It is a simple and easy method to apply;
- Do not need to use hormonal medications that have unpleasant side effects such as headache, bloating and varicose veins;
- Greater control over the changes of your body by being attentive daily to what happens in your intimate region;
- Safety in having sex on the right days so as not to run the risk of becoming pregnant.
In addition, knowing the basic pattern of infertility allows us to know the days when the woman can have sex without having the risk of becoming pregnant, without having to use any contraceptive method, observing only the signs of the body daily.