63

Ava Bracelet Review (My Experience with Ava vs. Manual BBT Charting)

If you’re not good at temping, maybe due to a hectic work schedule or nursing baby, you should consider an alternative method. The Ava bracelet might be one of the many tools that you can use to track your cycles.

Disclaimer: This is not a sponsored post. I did not buy the Ava bracelet at the full price. I got it from a member of the subreddit TryingForABaby who offered it for half the price to any interested member.

How a Wrist Wearable Like Ava Helps Track Your Fertility

Many women find it appealing to track their basal body temperature (BBT) as a means of natural family planning.

It is relatively cheap to track your BBT, and you only need a thermometer and the willpower to wake up each morning at the same time to record your temperature.

Modern wearable devices take away the disadvantages of traditional BBT temping, making them appealing fertility tracking methods .

What is the Ava Bracelet and What Can it Do?

Ava Fertility Tracker

This wearable fertility tracker can detect the initial signs of fertility and indicate when your fertile window is going to end. The manufacturer Ava Science, Inc. claims that the bracelet can detect fertile days in real time.

All you need to do is wear the bracelet shortly before you go to bed, and it collects data on nine physiologic parameters while you’re sleeping.

You can use it to gain insights about your periods, sleep, stress, and pulse and to continue to track other parameters during pregnancy.

The video below is a quick review of the Ava bracelet, including how you can use it to track your fertility and get the most accurate fertility predictions possible.

My Experience with Ava Bracelet

I will describe all the parameters that this fertility tracker monitors and share my thoughts about them.

Setting Up My Ava Account (Screenshots)

I found it very straightforward to set up my account, although I faced some difficulties syncing the bracelet and the app. Follow these instructions to set up your Ava.

Ava Bracelet Personal Details
Ava Menstrual Cycle Information
Ava Pairing with the Device via Bluetooth

Temperature

This was one of the features that I liked about Ava. For someone who had tried several basal thermometers, including a non-mercury glass basal thermometer,  I found it very convenient to sleep with my tracker without having to wake up to measure my BBT.

Note: When I initially started using the Ava bracelet, I also temped using a digital basal thermometer (specifically Mabis Basal Thermometer ) to compare my findings.

My temperature readings with Ava were slightly lower than those measured with the Mabis Basal Thermometer. I didn’t find this surprising because I used the Mabis thermometer to take my oral temperature and the bracelet to measure my skin temperature.

Nevertheless, I achieved similar BBT graphs with both tools. The difference in temperature readings didn’t matter. In fact, what mattered was that I observed basal temperature shifts from a lower, pre-ovulatory level to a higher, post-ovulatory level.

I initially tried to use My Monthly Cycles to chart my BBT manually, but after dabbling around and not being able to find where I could enter my data, I gave up and downloaded this chart from Baby Center.

A Comparison of My Manually Entered Data Versus Ava Data

Comparing manually entered data on BBT chart with Ava data
Comparing manually entered data on BBT chart with my Ava data

Resting Pulse Rate

My digital basal thermometer could definitely not provide these data. Initially, I didn’t think I was going to benefit from these data.

You might be asking yourself, “Why is the resting pulse rate important in tracking fertility?”

Let’s look at previous research findings. It was shown that during the ovulatory and luteal phase, women’s resting-heart rates were significantly higher than in the menstrual and follicular phases.

The luteal phase occurs after ovulation and before your next period starts while the follicular phase occurs after menstruation and shortly before ovulation; the ovary gets ready to release an egg during this phase.

In fact, a woman’s resting heart rate rises by about two beats per minute during her fertile window compared with the rate during menstruation.

In simpler terms, a bump in resting heart rate can indicate that ovulation will occur in about 48 hours, and if you’re trying to get pregnant, you can plan to have intercourse with your partner during this period.

Breathing Rate

Like the heart rate, breathing rate also varies during a woman’s menstrual cycle. In fact, studies conducted on asthmatic women suggested a link between respiratory symptoms and hormonal changes during the menstrual cycle.

Your breathing rate also varies with your daily activities. For example, you breathe more often when you’re involved in vigorous activity, but you breathe less often when you’re resting or sleeping.

By collecting data on respiration rate, the Ava Bracelet can also help indicate your fertile window.

Heart Rate Variability Ratio

Heart rate variability (HRV) is a variation in the interval between your heart beats. This can be used to indicate your level of stress.  

The bracelet measures the HRV ratio, which indicates how stressed you are; i.e., the lower the rate, the less stressed you are. I wasn’t sure about the cut-off value for the HRV ratio and was okay with the app indicating whether it was low or high.

How can these data be helpful?

If your HRV ratio is high and you’re trying to get pregnant, you might want to seek help and learn about ways of decreasing stress while you’re trying to conceive. Remember that stress can interfere with conception. 

In fact, a reproductive specialist observed that when stress management techniques were applied, some women were able to conceive, suggesting a link between stress and infertility.

Sleep Quality

According to the National Sleep Foundation, an adult should get at least seven to nine hours of sleep per day.

But in reality, how many moms get that much sleep per day? As a working mom, I hardly get six and a half to seven hours of sleep per day due to the nature of my job.

What does sleep have to do with your fertility?

Evidence points toward an association between sleep and the menstrual cycle, i.e., your menstrual cycle sleep can affect your cycles and vice versa. 

Other Parameters 

Other parameters such as perfusion, bioimpedance, movement, and heat loss are all useful in tracking fertility.

I have never really taken the time to study these data, and I hope to post an update here as I familiarize myself with this tracking bracelet and study the various parameters.

Issues That I Faced with Ava Bracelet

I felt uncomfortable during the first few days in which I started using it. I was so conscious that I had something around my wrist whenever I was in bed.

Although the material was soft, it was hard not to think that I was sleeping with a watch. Also, my skin felt a little itchy when I woke up in the morning, especially when I put the strap on a little too tight.

On the first day that I got the bracelet, I noticed that it charged very quickly. It surprised me to see a Green light appear only a few minutes after I plugged the charger in.

I felt misled, and I asked in a forum if anyone had experienced the same. I had to charge Ava for several hours before using it for the first time.

Ava bracelet won't sync with the app

I also initially encountered problems when syncing my Ava. I had used Smart Basal Thermometer before trying Ava, so I was confident that syncing was going to be straightforward.

Connecting the module to my computer to sync the data every morning was a little challenging.

Once you connect your Ava, a blue LED light should turn on. But if a blue does not turn on, you should unplug your bracelet and plug it in again.

Occasionally, I forgot to turn on Bluetooth and encountered problems getting the data to sync. You should also check this if you’re facing trouble when syncing your Ava.

You might also want to contact support if you’re having trouble with your device.

Is Ava Bracelet Worth It?

I’ve read most of the published literature available on wearable fertility trackers, and currently available data are encouraging.

Ava is designed to accurately identify the most fertile days of a woman’s cycle. Based on clinical trials conducted on women of reproductive age, the manufacturer claims to detect the start of a woman’s fertile window earlier than other tools such as urine-based ovulation predictor kits.

The bracelet identifies an average of 5.3 fertile days per cycle with an accuracy rate of 89%.

However, if you’re looking into Ava for natural fertility planning, you should consider using its temperature and pulse data to complement an existing fertility-based birth control method.

Although the device is not designed to identify a woman’s “safe” days, the manufacturer is looking into expanding Ava’s current use as a tool to help women trying to conceive to make it a tool for women using traditional fertility-awareness techniques of birth control 

While many of us have probably looked into using Ava as a method of contraception, I believe it is risky to use Ava’s fertile window prediction to determine when we’re unlikely to get pregnant.

Until the company is able to narrow the fertility risk window, it is better to use an alternative non-hormonal birth control method or, as I mentioned previously, complement the fertility tracker’s pulse rate and temperature data with other natural fertility awareness methods such as the cervical mucus monitoring or calendar rhythm method.

Ava Bracelet Reviews from Customers: Do Women Like This Smart Ovulation Detection Device?

Many women have shared their experiences, and although some women have reported that Ava wasn’t for them, many are satisfied with the bracelet and have found that it could help them predict when they will be most fertile.

I’ve put together some reviews that women have shared in the screenshots below.

Ava fertility bracelet feedback

Source: Mumsnet

Ava tracker feedback

Source: The Bump

You’ll also find numerous reviews on YouTube, including this review from ItsKelsiesLife who doesn’t recommend this bracelet and believes there are cheaper options to track your fertility.

Can You Really Get Pregnant Using Ava?

You’ve probably read stories from influencers who used the bracelet and conceived within six months (here, here, and here). However, it is important to remember that it’s not because the bracelet worked for a friend, relative, or reality TV personality that it’s going to work for you. Besides, there are so many factors involved that it is hard to determine which factors actually make it possible for a couple to get pregnant.

Nevertheless, Ava Science Inc. affirms that you can double your chances of getting pregnant in one month if you time intercourse accurately. Ava is just one method to help you pinpoint your fertile days.

Like most women, you would like to read stories from people who have successfully gotten pregnant after using the bracelet. After everything, who would want to fork out more than $200 for a device that won’t serve its purpose.

Here are some real reports from people who used Ava and got pregnant:

One user said,

Pregnant after 2 cycles on Ava. The other free apps had my ovulation 5 days sooner than Ava. Ava even told us to try one more day since my parameters weren’t in the right range. So glad we tried again and this time it was our time <img draggable=” />

Another woman said,

I don’t have any issues with my bracelet. Just the app signs me out sometimes and it’s a pain. Happy to say I am pregnant after 22 months of trying and 3 months of Ava. I do believe Ava helped. It’s still early but we are hopeful. Thank you!

And this report is from a woman who got pregnant five months after she started using Ava

The Ava Bracelet works wonderfully. My husband and I were trying to get pregnant for a year and a half and then we ordered the bracelet. I have very irregular periods and it helped us narrow our window which resulted in us becoming pregnant in 5 months! We are so happy!

View more on Trustpilot.

Summary

Wrist Wearable Device for Natural Fertility Planning

Fitbit, a Cheaper Alternative to Ava?

Fitbit Charge 2 Heart Rate + Fitness Wristband, Black, Small (US Version), 1 Count

Fitbit logs a range of data about your activities throughout the day. These data include the number of steps you take, the distance covered, and the calories burned. You can also wear it to bed to monitor sleep quality. 

While this device was designed to track physical activity, experts believe that women can use wearable sensors such as this one to track their heart rates and use the data to help them get pregnant.

This is because scientists found a direct correlation between the resting heart rate tracked by Fitbit devices and all four phases of the menstrual cycle.

Thus, you can better understand your fertile days by using FitBit and tracking your heart rate alongside other parameters such as your BBT or cervical mucus.  

Further Reading

  1. Moran VH, Leathard HL, Coley J. Cardiovascular functioning during the menstrual cycle. Clin Physiol. 2000 Nov;20(6):496-504. Read the article.
  2. Leicht AS, Hirning DA, Allen GD. Heart rate variability and endogenous sex hormones during the menstrual cycle in young women. Exp Physiol. 2003 May;88(3):441-6. Read the article.
  3. Barron ML, Fehring RJ. Basal body temperature assessment: is it useful to couples seeking pregnancy? Am J Matern 569 Child Nurs. 2005;30(5):290–6. Read the article.
  4. Sarabia JA, Rol MA, Mendiola P, Madrid JA. Circadian rhythm of wrist temperature in normal-living subjects. Physiol Behav [Internet]. 2008 Nov;95(4):570–80. Read the article.
  5. Baker FC, Colrain IM, Trinder J. Reduced parasympathetic activity during sleep in the symptomatic phase of severe premenstrual syndrome. J Psychosom Res. 2008 Jul;65(1):13-22. doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychores.2008.04.008. Read the article.
  6. Pallone SR, Bergus GR. Fertility awareness-based methods: Another option for family planning. J Am Board Fam Med. 567 2009;22(2):147–57. Read the article.
  7. Usha Rani YS, Manjunath P, Desai RD. Comparative Study of Cardiac Autonomic Functions in Different Phases of Menstrual Cycle in Healthy Young Women Aged 18–22 Years by determining Heart Rate Variability. J. Physiol. Pharmacol. 2013;3(1). Read the article.
  8. de Zambotti M, Nicholas CL, Colrain IM, Trinder JA, Baker FC. Autonomic regulation across phases of the menstrual cycle and sleep stages in women with premenstrual syndrome and healthy controls. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2013 Nov;38(11):2618-27. doi: 10.1016/j.psyneuen.2013.06.005. Read the article.
  9. Tenan MS, Brothers RM, Tweedell AJ, Hackney AC, Griffin L. Changes in resting heart rate variability across the menstrual cycle. Psychophysiology 2014;51:996–1004, doi:10.1111/psyp.2014.51.issue-10. Read the article.
  10. Shilaih M, Clerck V, Falco L, Kübler F, Leeners B. Pulse Rate Measurement During Sleep Using Wearable Sensors, and its Correlation with the Menstrual Cycle Phases, A Prospective Observational Study. Sci Rep. 2017 May 2;7(1):1294. doi: 10.1038/s41598-017-01433-9. Read the article.
  11. Shilaih M, Goodale BM, Falco L, Kübler F, De Clerck V, Leeners B. Modern fertility awareness methods: Wrist wearables capture the changes of temperature associated with the menstrual cycle. Biosci Rep. 2017 Nov 24. pii: BSR20171279. doi: 10.1042/BSR20171279. Read the article.
Princila M
 

Hi! Thanks for visiting. I'm a science geek and proud mom of two adorable kids. I love to research, learn, and write about personal improvement, healthy living, and fertility. On this site, I'll be reviewing the best fertility tests and discussing tips to help couples trying to conceive. I appreciate you visiting my website, and I'd be glad to answer any questions you may have. Visit our About page for more details and to connect with me.

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 63 comments