Thursday, January 15, 2015

Charting Apps

I recently got my first smart phone, and I've ventured into the world of charting apps. I was surprised by how many choices there were. I wanted a free app that tracked temperature, mucus, and cervical position, and wasn't aimed at couples trying to conceive.
  • CycleProGo
    • Pros: Created by the Couple to Couple League, and it applies the rules taught in the Couple to Couple League courses.
    • Cons: Expensive and from what I've heard, buggy.
  • FEMM (Fertility Education and Medical Management)
    • Pros: It had options for tracking all sorts of cycle related symptoms (headaches, insomnia, cramps, etc). Seemedlike a good app for tracking anything that might be related to the cycle.
    • Cons: No place to record basal temperature? Or at least, I couldn't figure it out after 10 minutes, so not a main focus.
  • Grove Fertility and Period Tracker
    • Pros: Loved the interface!
    • Cons: Not a big fan of paying $0.99/month :(
  • Kindara
    • Pros: Good enough interface. I really like the month view of the chart - it's easy to read and too see the mucus, cervical position, and temperature together.
    • Cons: I don't love the daily entry page (too much scrolling down to see everything). 
I've settled on using Kindara for now. Here's a view of my chart from my laptop (it's similar on my phone). Among other things, you can see that temperature taking was a crap shoot over the holidays, and that holiday stress and then a horrible work week have delayed ovulation.

There are a few things I especially like about Kindara. It allows the user to set alarms with reminders, so I've got a morning temperature alarm, and an evening cervix check alarm set. It also encouraged me to be more aware of my mucus, because it gives more options for consistency and quantity than my current paper charts. I also like the whole month view of the chart - it's much easier to read the whole cycle chart than many of the apps I looked at. 

Kindara sells itself as a totally self-sufficient , no classes or books needed, way to learn the fertility awareness method. I don't think that's possible and I'm very happy that I've taken classes and read up on it. I'm also not sure that I like having the data stored electronically. I think it was much easier to learn on paper. On the other hand, it's easy in Kindara to jot down notes about cramps, mucus, etc on a 5 minute break from work, whereas I won't be lugging my family planning binder anywhere anytime soon.

For a more comprehensive review of fertility apps, check this review.

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