If you’re trying to conceive, it might be helpful to know that your libido is highest during your fertile window. It’s also when your hormones are peaking.
In the days leading up to ovulation, there is a spike in estrogen and testosterone levels, as well as oxytocin, which can boost libido. These hormones help ensure that your body is ready for reproduction.
During the follicular phase of your menstrual cycle, estrogen levels rise as your body prepares for ovulation. As a result, many women experience an increase in sexual desire. The libido peak typically occurs a few days before you ovulate.
Besides increased estrogen, you’re also producing a hormone called luteinizing hormone (LH). This surge of this chemical signals the ovary to release an egg. LH is also known as the “love hormone.” This may be why you feel more romantic feelings during this time.
Testosterone and oxytocin are two other chemicals that stimulate arousal, and both of these hormones peak around the same time as your ovulation. These hormones work in tandem with estrogen to create a sexy climax and arousal that feels like a natural high.
The hormonal changes that occur around ovulation can also cause you to bloat. The good news is, this bloating usually resolves quickly after you ovulate. In the meantime, you can alleviate some of your discomfort by consuming less sodium and caffeine, increasing water intake, and applying heat to reduce swelling.
You may have noticed that the colors red and pink are associated with love and romance, but researchers have discovered a more scientific explanation for why you’re drawn to these hues at this time of the month. According to a study in Psychological Science, women are more likely to wear clothes in these shades near the point of ovulation. The scientists theorize that this is because these are the colors most associated with the horniness and sexual arousal caused by elevated estrogen and testosterone.
The levels of sex hormones estrogen and testosterone in your body fluctuate with each phase of the menstrual cycle. For some, this can trigger sexual desire. These hormones reach their highest peak around ovulation. It’s thought that this increase is due to the fact that you are most fertile at this time, so your body naturally wants to reproduce. This explains why many women experience higher sex drive during this time.
As the follicular phase ends, your progesterone levels drop and this can dampen your libido. This is why you might need extra lube during this time. The luteal phase begins shortly after ovulation and continues until your period starts. In this phase, estrogen and progesterone increase, but not as much as during the follicular phase. During this time, some people report masturbating more, consuming more erotica and having more intense and arousing sexual fantasies.
Testosterone plays a big role in male reproductive functions, including sperm production and the development of the prostate gland and external genitalia. Research suggests that the ovulation-induced increase in sex drives in females is triggered by increased levels of dihydrotestosterone, an androgen produced by the Leydig cells of the testes in men and by the ovaries in women. It’s also thought that arousal in females may be triggered by a change in the way that these hormonal changes influence certain central neurophysiological pathways. This leads to an increased reactivity of the sympathetic nervous system, which is related to sexual responses.
Oxytocin is a powerful hormone that is secreted in the brain from neurosecretory cells. It is a nine-amino acid compound that is known to stimulate uterine contractions during labor, encourage the ejection of milk (letdown) during lactation, and promote maternal nurturing behaviour in mammals. It is produced in the hypothalamus and stored in posterior pituitary gland axons before being released into the bloodstream. It is also synthesized and secreted in the nipple, ovary, placenta, and testes. Manufactured oxytocin is used to induce labour if it has not started naturally and to strengthen contractions during childbirth. Research into oxytocin has shown that it is associated with trust, bonding, and empathy. It is even thought to be involved in orgasm as it causes arousal and stimulates the release of testosterone.
This behind-the-scenes physiology is likely the reason why many women feel most horny around the time of ovulation. Combined with estrogen and luteinizing hormone, oxytocin increases libido and sexual desire. This is why studies have found that arousal is highest in the five to six days leading up to ovulation, and why sex drive decreases after ovulation as the likelihood of pregnancy begins to diminish. In fact, some research has also found that masturbation peaks mid-cycle. This may be because the cervical position is higher and softer at this time.
The hormonal changes that occur around ovulation also affect a woman’s sexual drive. She may notice more sexual arousal than usual and be able to reach a deeper climax with her partner during this time.
The hormones estrogen and progesterone begin to rise during the follicular phase of the menstrual cycle. This is the part of the cycle when ovulation is most likely to happen, but there’s no guarantee of it. This is when women experience their biggest burst of energy and sexual desire.
Luteinizing hormone is released from the gonadotroph cells of the anterior pituitary gland in response to a chemical signal called kisspeptin from the hypothalamus. It then binds to receptors in the ovaries and testes to regulate the release of follicle-stimulating hormone and human chorionic gonadotropin, or hCG. LH then stimulates the ovarian thecal cells to produce an egg and triggers ovulation. It also stimulates Leydig cells in the testes to produce androgens.
Women can monitor their LH levels by using at-home ovulation tests, available in many drug stores. These tests aren’t as accurate as a blood test, but they can help women pinpoint when they’re most likely to ovulate. They simply require peeing on a stick that measures the level of LH in the urine. A positive result indicates that there’s an LH surge, which means ovulation is close and it’s a good time to try for pregnancy.