Planning to start a family? To give yourself the best chance of conceiving and going through a healthy pregnancy, you may need to examine your habits and make some changes. There’s a lot you can do to prepare your body for pregnancy. There’re also things you should avoid and here are some of them.
Smoking and alcohol
Smoking and alcohol have been found to have negative effect on both male and female fertility. They can also harm your child in utero. You won’t immediately know that you’re pregnant, so it’s best to give up smoking and alcohol while you’re still trying to conceive to make sure your baby is not affected.
Too much caffeine
While it’s usually ok to drink 1-2 cups of coffee per day, excessive amounts of caffeine (more than 200 mg per day) increase your risk of miscarriage. Caffeine can also be found in tea, chocolate, soft drinks and energy drinks.
Fish high in mercury
Mercury can be harmful to your baby and some kinds of fish, like shark, swordfish and marlin, are very rich in mercury. Mercury can accumulate in your body, so start reducing your mercury intake now, before you conceive. Only have fish that’s high in mercury once in a while or not at all and limit fish with lower mercury levels (salmon, snapper and trout, just to mention a few) to 2-3 servings per week.
Lubricants can make sex more fun, but they are toxic to sperm. Lubricants affect sperm’s motility (its ability to move forward) and sperm cells die before they can reach the uterus. If you’re trying to conceive, try more foreplay instead or use warm water for lubrication.
You’ve probably heard the saying “Relax and it will happen” – there’s truth to it. Numerous studies have confirmed the link between stress and infertility. If you’re feeling stressed, now is the time to engage in more activities you love and find a form of relaxation that works for you.
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If getting pregnant is on your agenda, you’re probably hoping to get a positive pregnancy test result after the first try. Many of us know women who were able to conceive within the first few weeks of trying. However, it can take up to a year for the average woman under the age of 35 to conceive.
If you happen to fall into this category, it is important to not get discouraged. As well as talking with your doctor, there are a few other things that you can do to increase your chances of getting pregnant.
How long does it take most couples to get pregnant?
Statistics show that approximately 25 percent of couples are able to conceive within the first month, and 50 percent will conceive by the end of six months. After a year of trying to conceive, 85 to 90 percent of couples should be successful. This means that around 10 to 15 percent of couples will not be able to conceive within one year. If you’re over 35, consider seeing a fertility specialist after six months of trying.
How can I increase my chances of conceiving?
Check your ovulation and fertile time. You should start having intercourse a few days before your predicted ovulation date. Avoid using lubricant and try to remain horizontal for up to 30 minutes after intercourse.
You can also increase the likelihood of conception by eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly and taking a multivitamin or prenatal vitamin. A supplement that contains lots of folic acid is especially important because it is essential for early fetal development.
What should I do if I can’t get pregnant?
If you have been trying for more a one year, you should consult with your doctor and a fertility specialist. They will be able to conduct tests on you and your partner to determine the cause. Once the cause has been established, your doctor can suggest a method of treatment. The most common fertility treatments include fertility drugs, in-vitro fertilisation (IVF), intra-uterine insemination and hormone therapy, and adoption and fostering is also an option.
There are many factors that may lead to infertility in men or women. Thyroid problems, cancer, imbalanced hormones, previous cases of the mumps, low sperm count, poly-cystic ovarian syndrome and other conditions can significantly lower your chances of getting pregnant. Fortunately, the majority of these conditions can be treated by a fertility specialist. However, many of the treatment methods can be quite expensive and take years.
Remember, you’re not alone. Try not to get stressed or discouraged, and talk to your partner and family about the next course of action. You’ll find many online forums as well to help with your next steps.
How long did it take you to conceive?
Making the decision to start a family is just the first step in the pregnancy journey. Before you even begin to try getting pregnant, there are several steps you should take to ensure that your body is the ultimate nurturing environment for a baby.
The food you put in your body before conception affects your chances of conception and the health of your future. As soon as you make the decision to get pregnant, eliminate trans and animal fats and refined sugars from your diet. Instead, stick with a diet rich in whole, unprocessed foods such as nuts, seeds, legumes, vegetables and whole grains.
Your weight is extremely important when trying to conceive. If you are overweight or underweight, chances of conception decline. Before you even begin to try for a baby, get your body to an ideal weight. Keep in mind that the body suppresses fertility in women who are consistently losing weight.
If you don’t already exercise, now is the time to start. Research shows that women who engage in at least 30 minutes of exercise three times a week have a higher chance of getting pregnant. Exercise that is too strenuous may place too much stress on the body and lower chances of conception, so try not to overdo the workouts.
A baby in the first stages of development requires high amounts of folic acid to build a healthy central nervous system. Mothers who begin a course of folic acid supplements prior to conception are far less likely to have a baby with birth defects. Ensure the health of your baby now by including this supplement in your diet.
If you smoke, hopefully you are planning to quit once you become pregnant. Now is the time to throw away your cigarettes. If you quit now, your body can purge the harmful chemicals found in cigarettes, and you will have a much easier time conceiving.
Stress is bad news for your body and mind, but it particularly affects fertility. If you are under stress, it can even prevent ovulation. It’s time to implement stress management techniques like daily meditation or yoga to can diminish the impact on your reproductive system.
Trying to get pregnant can sometimes feel like science. Your fertility cycle is unique, and it is really important to chart and monitor your period in a pregnancy calendar. If you begin to do this before you try for a baby, you will have a good idea of exactly when you ovulate and how external factors affect your ovulation cycle.
Don’t forget there are steps your man should also take to ensure his sperm are as healthy as possible. A diet high in whole foods that is good for your fertility is also good for his. If you both eat well, and stay hit, your chances of conception should increase.
Sperm must be kept at a certain temperature to be as healthy as possible. Tight, synthetic underpants can make that temperature far too high. Treat your partner to a gift of boxers in a natural, breathable fabric for healthier sperm.
In this age of technology, many men keep their mobile phones stashed in a front pocket. The small amount of radiation emitted by the phone can have a big impact on fertility. Using a laptop computer directly on the lap creates the same problem. To protect sperm, keep mobiles and laptops away from the groin.
What are your best tips for getting pregnant?
Getting pregnant isn’t always easy or simple. Even if you and your partner are both in good health, you may find pregnancy just doesn’t happen right away. Sometimes women in their thirties find that their fertility isn’t what it was in their twenties. Don’t put pressure on yourself, as there are options in having children.
Here are six ways to help try getting pregnant faster. We can’t guarantee that any or all of them will work for you, but they’re all worth a shot if you’re trying to get pregnant.
Stop the pill early
If you’ve been taking oral contraceptives for several years, it may take your body several months to begin ovulating regularly again. (This is also true for the patch, the ring, Implanon and Mirena IUC.) Because of this, you should stop using contraception for a few months so your body can get fully primed for pregnancy.
Find out when you ovulate
Your body is more likely to conceive on certain days of your cycle than others, so you need to learn what time of the month you ovulate. The easiest way to do this is to buy an ovulation predictor kit, or OPK. The OPK will detect a surge in luteinizing hormone (LH) in your urine that will happen about 36 to 48 hours before you ovulate.
Schedule sex for just before you ovulate
Once your ovaries shoot out an egg, it will hang around for only 12 to 24 hours, so you need to make sure it will meet up with a sperm during that time. The best way to make sure this happens is to start having frequent sex as soon as your period ends. Your ovulation date and the following two days are the prime times for conception to occur.
Lie on your back following sex
Resting on your back allows the sperm to pool in your vagina and be in the best position to swim for your egg. Having sex before you go to bed is a good way to make conception more likely. Drift off to dreams of being a mommy!
Be ready to test
You’ll want to know as soon as possible if you do succeed in getting pregnant, so buy at least one home pregnancy test and have it ready to go. For the most accurate results, wait to test until the day after you expect your period to arrive. Testing too early can give false negative results, so since you want a positive, don’t rush things!
If you don’t succeed, try again
Don’t be disappointed if you don’t get pregnant the first month you try. Statistics show that while more than half of couples that try to conceive will do so within six months and 85% within a year, most do not in just one month. Don’t lose hope.
Do you have any secret tips for trying to get pregnant?