You can use Natural Cycles even if you have an irregular sleeping schedule; the key is to find what works best for you!
We recommend that you try to measure at least five times a week to give the algorithm plenty of data.
Generally speaking, we recommend measuring around the same time every day after the same amount of sleep, within a ±2 hour window from when you usually wake up.
If you have irregular sleep habits, a tip is to always set the alarm at the same time, for example, at 07.00 am, measure as soon as you wake up, and then you can fall back asleep if needed. If you find it challenging to find a consistent time to measure, try to find a consistent measuring time on as many days as possible, even if this means not adding five measurements a week.
If you're changing time zones or from working day to night shifts, you should exclude your temperature on the first day, so your body can get used to the new schedule.
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If you tend to wake up a lot throughout the night, you should measure after the longest stretch of sleep.
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- I wake up during the night, when should I measure?
- My child wakes me up at night, when should I measure?
It all comes down to finding what works best for you. To maintain the habit of measuring, we recommend you still measure and exclude the temperature if it meets the criteria for when to exclude a temperature.
If you have to exclude temperatures, Natural Cycles' effectiveness as a birth control will not be affected. Logging less temperature data means that you will experience more red days, where protection is needed, which may reduce your satisfaction with Natural Cycles. Learn more here.
Note: If you're struggling with your measuring routine, know that you now have the option to use Natural Cycles with one of our approved wearable devices (the Oura Ring and the Apple Watch). When using Natural Cycles with a wearable device, your temperature data gets measured overnight while you sleep. This means that you no longer need to remember to take your temperature before getting out of bed in the morning! Learn more about using Natural Cycles with the Oura Ring here, and with the Apple Watch here.