Anovulation, anovulatory menstrual cycle or anovulatory periods means having periods without ovulating.

If you're experiencing anovulation, then you're not able to ovulate which can cause infertility. Here are a few things that can occur if you are dealing with anovulation.

Anovulation and anovulatory period may occur in women that have the following issues:

• Obesity,
• Underweight (anorexia or bulimia) and malnourished,
• Tubal ligation procedure,
• May be close to be menopausal,
• Experiencing high stress levels and anxiety,
• Pituitary and ovarian failure,
• Women who exercise excessively,
• Coming off birth control pills,
• Taking certain antidepressant drugs,
• Hypothyroidism and adrenal insufficiency,
• Chronic mental illnesses and depression
• Blood pressure medications,
• Traveling can alter timing of your ovulation and menstrual cycle,
• Environmental pollution, pesticides and toxins,
• Experiencing premenopausal symptoms and hormone imbalance

Couples that are trying to get pregnant should consult their physician. They will ask you for a list of medications to determine whether or not medications may have side effects that include causing problems with ovulation. Without ovulation, you will NOT be able to get pregnant.

Anovulation means that your ovaries aren't releasing any egg cell or oocyte for fertilization. However, it may also mean that you are pregnant because the periods have stopped.

Women who decide to breast feed will notice that their ovulation and menstrual periods will be suppressed.

This has to do with prolactin levels, which is a natural occurrence. This way the body can extend the time between pregnancies.

If you're trying to get pregnant now, then start monitoring your basal body temperature or cervical fluid build up. If the body temperature isn't at least two-tenths of a degree higher for more than 2 or 3 days, then you're not ovulating in most cases.

Keep in mind that some women ovulate without a rise in temperature. If this is the case, then an ultrasound will be used to see if you are ovulating. Some people use a home LH surge monitoring kit instead.

What causes the rise in basal body temperature? It's progesterone which is produced after ovulation.

Those who are experiencing anovulation will not be able to produce progesterone and the overall level of this crucial hormone will decline.

When the uterine lining doesn't have enough progesterone, then it's hard for the body to balance the estrogen levels.

Once this occurs, with too much estrogen, you could experience hormone imbalance symptoms which can include the inability to become pregnant. Ovulation needs progesterone, estrogen, FSH as well as LH.

Our brain's hypothalamus makes gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH). This stimulates the pituitary gland to generate (FSH) or follicle-stimulating hormone and (LH) or luteinizing hormone.

When FSH is present, it will help the ovary make estrogen and allow the follicle to mature. The luteinizing hormone will raise your body temperature before ovulation and then the follicle ruptures while the egg travels to the fallopian tube. The ruptured follicle is known as the corpus luteum, which will start producing progesterone.

Your estrogen and progesterone levels will quickly decline if pregnancy doesn't occur after ovulation. The shedding of the endometrium will begin and menstrual cycle flow will start. Those who are pregnant will see these levels go up and the endometrium will not shed. This allows the implantation of the embryo.

There are other factors that come into play when anovulation takes place like stress, hypothyroidism and adrenal insufficiency.

Stress is definitely one of the major factors, because our bodies release adrenaline and other stress hormones to compensate. Keep in mind, if stress continues, then the body will adapt to adrenal hyper-stimulation. This means your hormone imbalances will become worse.

Another area of concern is your blood sugar levels. With unstable blood sugar levels, the ovaries can simply shut down.

The body will know you are under severe stress, so your energy and resources are taken away from the reproductive organs and transferred to the muscles and other organs.

Estrogen will also become dominant, because progesterone production will be reduced.

Obesity issues or underweight women are the most susceptible to anovulation. You can have periods without ovulating and it can occur in women who are 20 years old to their late 30s. This is when estrogen production and vaginal bleeding during menstruation will become erratic.

Once the estrogen levels rise, a woman could deal with hormone imbalance symptoms like breast swelling, tenderness, mood swings, water retention, weight gain and even problems sleeping. Again, these levels are due to a lack of ovulation and lower levels of progesterone.

When an anovulatory menstrual cycle is present the progesterone will drop to extremely low levels, but the estrogen will stay the same.

There are several symptoms that surface when a progesterone deficiency is present. Why? Well, progesterone neutralizes any danger when excess estrogen is present and brings the hormonal levels back to a common balance.

If your menstrual cycle, period, or menstruation is anovulatory, then increased health risks could be present. It could affect your marriage, sex life, well-being, career and family life.

You also need enough body fat to ovulate. Those who are thin cannot produce enough GnRH to stimulate the pituitary gland. When this occurs, you can't generate FSH or LH like mentioned earlier. The end result is low levels of estrogen and progesterone and anovulatory problems in all the areas above.

Women who are overweight according to their particulars will see their estrogen levels rise. Remember that this makes the body become estrogen dominant, which can make the body want to increase its body fat.

It's also important to understand that women who are obese can become insulin resistant, which will interfere with the follicular development as well as ovulation.

When you experience anovulatory periods for several months, the estrogen production becomes erratic, you may have surges of too much estrogen alternating with very low levels. Menstrual periods of vaginal bleeding may become erratic, some much heavier than others.

When estrogen surges, women undergoing these changes may notice breast swelling, tenderness, mood swings, water retention, weight gain and sleep disturbance. These are some of the symptoms of estrogen dominance caused by lack of ovulation and low levels of progesterone.

During the secretory phase of a normal menstrual cycle, estrogen and progesterone should be balanced - during an anovulatory menstrual cycle, the levels of estrogen remain the same but the progesterone production drops to very low levels.

Progesterone deficiency causes several symptoms of premenopause and hormone imbalance signs which creates many health issues for men and women. Progesterone neutralizes the dangers of excess estrogen and helps solve hormone imbalance symptoms.

Without these two substances, the production of estrogen and progesterone is very low and they may experience anovulation.

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