Billings Method

Pre-Menopause and Beyond

Are you interested in learning the Billings Method to understand your fertility and protect your reproductive health?  If so we can help. You can use this method to either achieve or avoid pregnancy.



The Billings Method in the Pre-menopause and Beyond

Woman is unique in that her reproductive capacity ends in middle life. There is a progressive decline of fertility until, at about the age of 45 to 50 years, when she becomes infertile. She will perhaps have another 25 years of active life still ahead of her. The years during which the loss of fertility advances to completion are known as the climacteric (change of life). The word "menopause" is more strictly applied to the termination of the menstrual periods.

Progestogen stimulates the production of G mucus and thus aims to prevent sperm penetration and sperm survival.

Physiological Patterns of the Climacteric

The physiological patterns of the climacteric may take one of the following forms:

  • The menstrual periods may stop without obvious warning and not begin again. In these circumstances the woman may at first suspect that she is pregnant.
  • The cycles may become very irregular, and the amount of bleeding may vary considerably, at times being heavy. Reliance on Rhythm Method calculations may have led to error when there was sudden shortening or lengthening of the cycles beyond the range on which the calculations were based, with an unintended conception as a result. The request for help will then follow the birth of this child, the mother being very anxious and still largely ignorant of the natural indications of fertility and infertility.
  • Ovulation may now occur infrequently or cease altogether, but cycles of bleeding continue It is a mistake for a woman to believe that she must be fertile simply because she is still experiencing periodic bleeding.
  • The woman may become infertile before ovulation ceases because the ovulations are no longer accompanied by that type of mucus which is necessary for conception to occur.
  • The interval between ovulation and the following menstruation may become much shorter than the 2 weeks characteristic of a normal cycle. Shortening of the post-ovulatory (luteal) phase is an indication of infertility in that cycle. This shortening of the luteal phase or, in other cases, relatively low levels of progesterone in a luteal phase of normal length are often attributed to "an inadequate corpus luteum", but these are rather simplistic interpretations of an intricate biological process, better described as "an inadequate ovulation".

It cannot be predicted how long a time may elapse between the onset of these changes and the end of fertility. It is possible for the menstrual periods to cease for months at a time, only to be followed by several apparently normal or short cycles.

As time goes by, the woman can be assisted to recognise an increasing number of indications of infertility, and to perceive that many signs of fertility which existed previously are now only memories. The changes to cycle length and the changes in the menstrual periods themselves are only part of the evidence.

If ovulation does occur, menstruation will always follow within about 2 weeks, in the absence of pregnancy.

How can you learn about this method?

Accredited Billings teachers help individual couples manage their fertility naturally. Contact a teaching Centre in your area, or direct your inquiry to our online address (see billingsMentor.)


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