What is the Sympto-thermal Method?
The Sympto-thermal Method is supported by international research and proven to be at least 98% effective by the World Health Organisation, as long as it is taught by an Accredited Fertility Educator, and practised consistently and correctly. The latest research from Germany shows an improved efficacy of 99.4% (Petra Frank-Hermann 2007).
In 2020, the Ministry of Health published their New Zealand Aotearoa's guidance on contraception, which was an indepth review on the current contraceptive options available and in use in New Zealand, along with recommendations. The main takeaways for the Sympto-thermal Method (STM) were:
The STM is much more effective at preventing a pregnancy than other forms of Fertility Awareness. With correct and consistent use, there is less that 1 pregnancy for every 100 individuals using the method over the course of a year.
Combining fertility signs (like cervical mucus, sensation, and basal body temperature) is much more effective, than relying on only one sign of fertility.
It is important to learn how to use the STM from a trained Fertility Educator for the best effectiveness rate.
Which signs of Fertility does the STM use?
Basal Body Temperature
The BBT is the body's temperature while at rest, it is usually taken immediately upon waking every morning using an oral thermometer. This reading is then recorded on a fertility chart.
Cervical Mucus is produced by the cervix, and it changes througout the menstrual cycle. This is checked daily and recorded on the chart as well.
Sensation is an awareness of the how the vulva feels at different times during the cycle - this is recorded daily.
As well as the above signs of fertility, we also use some key indicators to 'double check' - this provides an extra layer of assurance when using the method to avoid pregnancy
Research & Articles
A collection of published research, including our own articles relating to the practice of Fertility Awareness.