See below the different methods offered through RHM. We are happy to assist you in choosing a method to get started with. If you are already a patient with RHM, please reach out through the patient portal to schedule an appointment.
What method is right for you?
What is Natural Family Planning?
Natural Family Planning, or NFP, is the process of avoiding or achieving pregnancy by observing your natural signs of fertility. Your body exhibits a number of signs and symptoms throughout your menstrual cycle that can help you determine whether you are in a fertile phase of your cycle or not. Using this information, couples who plan to avoid pregnancy are advised to abstain during the fertile phase of the woman’s menstrual cycle. For couples who hope to achieve pregnancy, intercourse is recommended during the fertile phase of the menstrual cycle. Knowing your fertile and infertile windows can also help you identify other health indicators as well. Your cycle is an important vital sign to your overall health as a woman.
The most reliable ways to track fertility throughout the menstrual cycle are mucus observations, tracking basal body temperature, and tracking urinary hormone levels. There are a number of NFP methods currently available to couples, and each method differs in the specific way that it identifies the fertile window and the days of abstinence required if you are using the method in marriage to achieve or avoid pregnancy.
Some methods of NFP only observe one biological indicator of fertility throughout the woman’s cycle - such as a mucus-based method (Creighton, Billings Ovulation Method). Some methods track a combination of biological indicators of fertility through the cycle, such as a sympto-thermal method (FEMM). Some methods integrate multiple biological indicators of fertility using a monitor to track your daily urinary hormone levels, giving you an objective reading for your fertility day to day (Marquette).
FEMM stands for Fertility Education and Medical Management. This method uses a paper chart in the first few months of the learning process, then transitions to the FEMM App. With this method, you are taught how to track your cervical mucus, and then in the following sessions, if desired, you are taught how to find your LH surge (impending ovulation) using urine test strips and measure your basal body temperature (confirm ovulation) using a thermometer. This method is excellent for those who are interested in monitoring their overall health and/or are trying to conceive as it helps you determine which hormone is dominant each day, therefore enabling you to know your body's hormonal patterns and where a problem may lie and where your fertile window is.
Marquette Method of Natural Family Planning
The Marquette Method of NFP integrates multiple biological indicators of fertility, when appropriate, to optimize detection of the fertile window. What sets the Marquette Method apart from most other methods is its incorporation of hormone monitoring and simplifying sometimes ambiguous signs of fertility. When using the Marquette Method of NFP, you can track your hormone levels through your cycle using the Clearblue Fertility Monitor (or another quantitative monitor such as Mira or Inito), together with the Marquette Method algorithm, to identify the fertile window in your cycle. The Marquette Method of NFP does not require that you track the symptoms that your hormones exhibit, such as cervical mucus or basal body temperature, but does have specific protocols in place if you choose to track the symptoms of your hormones either on their own, or in addition to your urinary hormone levels. The Marquette Method provides clear and objective hormone readings on the Clearblue fertility monitor, taking much of the guesswork out of NFP. All of the instructors who teach the Marquette Method of NFP are healthcare professionals and will work with each client individually to custom fit the method in a way that works best with their needs. This method is especially helpful for women who are postpartum and trying to avoid or achieve pregnancy, and couples who are trying to conceive, or avoid pregnancy in regular cycles as well.
Billings Ovulation Method (BOM)
The BOM is a NFP method that teaches you how to track your cervical mucus changes. Your reproductive system is complex, but it gives you very simple signals that you are able to recognize, helping you to identify the fertile and infertile times of the cycle. The cervical mucus produced on the cervix will give you different sensations, depending on which hormone is the dominant one. You will learn how to read your pattern through this method.
The instructor will give you a chart, where you get to notate your vulvar sensation and cervical mucus observations of the day. In the sessions, we will work together in order to identify your own fertility patterns and ovulation, within also some healthy biomarkers that should be present on the chart. This method can be used for achieving/avoiding pregnancy and also to monitor your overall health.
Creighton Model Summary
The Creighton Model System is a longstanding system that teaches fertility appreciation and cycle health using cervical mucus observations. Used by Naprotechnology medical consultants, this method gives incredible insight into fertility, infertility, and cycle health and can be up to 99.5% effective for those avoiding pregnancy for women with good cervical mucus observations.