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What is FAM?

The symptothermal Fertility Awareness Method (FAM) is a way of accurately assessing your fertility – potential to get pregnant – each day of your cycle.  Science has proven that the hormones of the menstrual cycle affect the type of fluid produced by a woman’s cervix, her cervical position and texture (sympto-), and her basal body temperature (-thermal).  FAM uses these indicators to know how close she is to ovulation, the time in her cycle when she could get pregnant.

Once you’ve invested a few hours to learn the method, and spent a few cycles learning to recognize and interpret your own fertility symptoms, FAM takes about 2 minutes a day to practice.  You’ll take your temperature upon waking each morning, check for cervical fluid a few times throughout the day when you go to the bathroom, and record this information on a paper chart.  You can also use a charting App on your phone or computer to collect the data.

If you’re using the method as birth control, you’ll use certain rules to determine when it’s safe to have unprotected sex based on your fertility signals.  You can choose to abstain from sex when you are fertile for maximum effectiveness or to use a barrier method, like a condom, or diaphragm on fertile days.

If you’re trying to get pregnant, you’ll use your fertility signals to help identify the best days to have sex or inseminate to maximize your chances of conception.

FAM can be used by women who have regular cycles, irregular cycles, who are breastfeeding, or perimenopausal.  FAM is not the ineffective rhythm method which is based on data from past cycles to predict what will happen during this cycle.  FAM uses scientifically-proven fertility signals gathered in real time.