When it comes to International Women’s Day, all the stories we hear around us are of women opening up about their vulnerabilities as well as their successes or failures. What many don’t usually talk about (whether openly or behind closed doors), despite its importance, is the topic of women’s health.

Think about it from a woman’s POV: isn’t putting your health and well-being before your career, family and friends the biggest #win – for you and your loved ones – at the end of the day? Even better if, along the way, you manage to detect any sort of irregular pattern say, in your menstrual cycle or spot any abnormality in your heart rate early on, which you can then address quickly. The best part about all of this is that you don’t have to jot down all these facts and figures in a notebook by yourself. All you’ll need to do is leave your worries to the new Apple Watch line-up and watchOS 9 if you haven’t already, as well as all the new health features and updates that will help you, excite you and make a huge difference in your life.

Photography: Apple

Over the last eight years since it was introduced, the Apple Watch has completely redefined what a watch can do. To a layman, it may only look like Apple’s version of a smartwatch, but those who’ve used an Apple Watch have come to understand the extent of its benefits and rely on it for the most essential functions of daily life – to stay active, monitor their health, connect with the people and information they care about most, and quickly get access to the help they need. In essence, the Apple Watch is not only easy to use but offers a wide range of health and fitness features that empowers users to be more connected to their health and to take small steps to improve it every day.

Like it or not, the fact is that you’re the only person who can impact your health based on the choices you make on a daily basis. While it’s important to consult your trusted panel of doctors on certain issues pertaining to your health and to get answers to some of your biggest questions and concerns, bear in mind that any input you’ll get will be based on the data you provide. And when such a need arises, you don’t need to be jogging your memory and scrambling for the data for your doctor when you can simply refer to the Health app on your iPhone or Apple Watch (provided you’ve activated all the features you need the data from – whether it’s Cycle Tracking or ECG, or something as specific as fertility and pregnancy tracking), which aims to help women at any age.

Photography: Apple

In the latest Cycle Tracking and the Apple Women’s Health Study, Dr. Sumbul Desai, Apple’s Vice President of Health, says that many physicians, including herself, believe that periods are a vital sign, and that treating them as such could help people around the world who menstruate be more in touch with their health. Keeping in mind that menstrual cycles are under-researched and stigmatised, treating them as the windows to our health can actually lead to the detection of many gynecologic and systemic conditions including infertility, menopause and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), which is a common hormonal problem for women of childbearing age.

Why Tracking Your Menstrual Cycle On Your Apple Watch and iPhone Is Important

The Benefits Of Using Cycle Tracking

Photography: Apple

1. Track your menstrual cycle in the Health app on your iPhone or the Cycle Tracking app on your Apple Watch. Using the app, you can log your period alongside details like symptoms or ovulation test results, with Cycle Tracking showing you your most recent symptoms.

2. Turn on notifications to find out when your next period or fertile window is approaching, and when you most likely ovulated. Each of them is indicated by a different shade (orange for when your next period should be, blue for when you are most fertile and purple for ovulation), which makes it so easy for you to identify them.

3. Log factors that can influence the timing and length of your cycle such as pregnancy, lactation or contraceptive use. When you’ve logged an ongoing cycle factor, Cycle Tracking will automatically manage whether period predictions, fertile window estimates and deviation notifications are available, based on the impact of the cycle factor.

4. Let your logged information and cycle length help Cycle Tracking use heart rate data from your Apple Watch to improve your period and fertile window predictions.

What Cycle Deviations Mean

Graph: Apple

1. Cycle Tracking can inform you if your logged cycle history from the past six months shows a pattern of irregular, infrequent or prolonged periods, or persistent spotting.

2. Changes in your cycle patterns can be a sign of an underlying health condition such as fibroids, thyroid disorders or PCOS, so it’s important to take note of them should they occur.

3. If you receive an alert or a notification about a possible cycle deviation, you’ll be able to review your logged cycle history to make sure it’s accurate.

4. If your cycle history is accurate, you can learn about the specific deviation detected and share this data as a PDF to your doctor, which you can AirDrop or email.

Retrospective Ovulation Estimates

Photography: Apple

1. Cycle Tracking has advanced algorithms that use wrist temperature data from the Apple Watch Series 8 or Apple Watch Ultra to detect the biphasic shift aka an increase in temperature that often occurs after ovulation.

2. Wear your Apple Watch to sleep with Sleep Focus and Sleep Tracking enabled, and you’ll be able to see wrist temperature data (in the form of nightly changes from your baseline temperature) after about five nights for that period.

3. Receive retrospective ovulation estimates after wearing your Apple Watch to sleep each night for about two menstrual cycles.

4. Receive a notification of the date you most likely ovulated after it has occurred (if you choose to) and view that information in Cycle Tracking on the Apple Watch or the Health app on your iPhone.

Privacy is fundamental in the design and development across all of Apple’s features, and is something you shouldn’t lose sleep over. When your iPhone is locked with a passcode, Face ID or Touch ID, all of your health and fitness data in the Health app (other than Medical ID) is encrypted, and any Health data backed up to iCloud is encrypted both in transit and on Apple servers. When using iOS and watchOS with the default two-factor authentication and a passcode, Health app data synced to iCloud is encrypted end-to-end, which means that Apple doesn’t have the key to decrypt the data and therefore cannot read it.

The Cycle Tracking app is not intended for use in a medical diagnosis, treatment or any other medical purpose, including as a form of birth control or to support conception. To get the most out of using Cycle Tracking while reducing disease risk and improving overall health, update your details on the Health app on your iPhone, and get the latest versions of iOS and watchOS.

Featured image: Apple

( Answer in less than 20 words )
Thank you! Your submission has been received!
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
This is some text inside of a div block.
No items found.
No items found.
No items found.
No items found.
No items found.
No items found.
No items found.