The basal body temperature (BBT) is an integral tool used to assist with acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine. The BBT chart allows a better understanding of the timing and quality of the different phases within a menstrual cycle. The BBT chart simply graphs the body temperature when the body is at its coldest – when waking in the morning. The allows for a standardised comparison between days.

To maximize the effectiveness of a BBT, it is imperative the patient fills in the chart as per the requirements of the respective acupuncturist or Chinese medicine herbalist. Below is a list of instructions for patients at the Fertility and IVF Acupuncture Clinic to insure the BBT chart is completed to our requirements.

Recording your temperature on the BBT chart:

  • Start a new BBT chart on the first day of bleeding (period). If the flow of the period starts before midday, then today is day one. If it starts after midday, then day one will be tomorrow.
  • For a reliable and meaningful reading, make sure you have had at least four hours of unbroken sleep. If you feel a poor sleep may affect your chart, mark it on your chart so this will not be forgotten during your next consultation.
  • Take your temperature immediately after you wake up each morning. Try your best to do this at the same time each morning. If you delay your reading, it may result in anomalies in your BBT chart.
  • At the IVF and Fertility Acupuncture Clinic we advise you use a mercury thermometer. They tend to be more reliable. There are electronic thermometers which are specifically designed for BBT readings. Use one of these if you cannot source a mercurial one.
  • Make sure you read the instructions which accompany your thermometer and follow these instructions closely. This will ensure an accurate temperature reading.
  • You can either use your thermometer orally or vaginally. For convenience, orally is fine (a vaginal reading will only be necessary if you receive very inconsistent readings orally).

Testing your cervical mucus:

  • From day six in your cycle start to test your cervical mucus.
  • To do this, insert your finger at the entrance to your vagina and collect any mucus which is present. If you do not find any, carefully insert your finger to the entrance of your cervix.
  • On your BBT chart, rate your mucus in terms of “W” for watery, S” for sticky and “L” for lubricating. “W” is when the mucus is like water. “S” is when the mucus stretches between your fingers and starts to look like egg white. “L” is less thick and stretchy and feels lubricating and more slippery.
  • Rate the volume of your cervical mucus as either “L” for light, “M” for medium and “H” for heavy. Try your best with this rating and do not worry if you are unsure. It will become easier to rate as your mucus changes during your cycle.

Other things to take note of:

  • At the top of each column is the corresponding number of that day in the menstrual cycle. On the days you have sexual intercourse, circle that corresponding day number.
  • Write the date of each day in the allotted space. This will save potential confusion.
  • During menstruation, each day rate the colour of the blood as either light, medium or dark. “L” for light coloured watery blood. “M” for normal blood red coloured blood. “D” for dark, brown or even purple coloured blood.
  • Rate the volume of your menstrual blood as either “L” for light, “M” for medium and “H” for heavy.
  • Take note of any signs and symptoms you experience during your cycle. Examples of symptoms which are worth noting are mood changes/irritability, breast sensitivity, period pain and back pain etc. Record them in the space provided.

Make An Appointment

Make an appointment for a consultation with Dr Wilson, call 1300 864 325 or email

The Clinic is conveniently located in Sydney CBD in The Dymocks Building at: Level 10, Suite 6/428 George St, Sydney NSW 2000

You can also use our form to let us know any questions or queries you have.

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.
Scroll to Top