Everyone has an opinion, tip, or story to share about getting pregnant. Some suggestions sound crazy, while others sound good in theory - but the best person to always ask is the gynaecologist if baby making is not going as planned. Some suggestions may scare couples while others may laugh - but it is time to set the record straight.
Before conceiving (or trying not to conceive) women may have a million questions about fertility, ovulation, and life choices. Deciding to have a baby is a big deal, and the best way to have a peace of mind is to know the facts about getting that bun in the oven!
We have compiled a list of 16 things that doctors want their patients to know about trying to conceive that can make a huge difference in whether they get a positive pregnancy test or not.
Everyone’s road to baby is different, but there are some basics that all women should have an idea about. A lot of people believe that getting pregnant is as simple as unprotected love making, but there is much more that goes into it.
Some women do get pregnant right away, while others may be six cycles into trying to conceive with no pregnancy test - there is some reason you are not getting pregnant, and doctors want women to know the potential reasons why! The topic of conception and trying to conceive may be confusing, stressful and leaving many with questions.
Read below to find out the things doctors wished mamas to be (and dads too!) knew about getting pregnant!
16Understanding The Cycle Is Crucial
Pregnancy is technically only possible during five days before ovulation through to the day of ovulation. So, if a woman is planning on conceiving, planning could be beneficial. So, how do women know they are ovulating?
There are many app’s to help women track their cycles. There are many ways to track ovulation- such as test strips, testing cervical mucus and basal body temperature. Doctors want you to know that if a woman understands their cycle, they can improve their chances of getting pregnant (if everything with the man and women are healthy.)
A woman does not have to track ovulation, she can always go with the flow and try to wing it, but that could take longer. It can take a few cycles for a woman to understand her cycle, but once she understands it, she will know when she can get that bun in the oven!
15How Much Is Too Much?
It does make sense why some people assume making love more can increase the chance of getting pregnant. The truth is, that’s a false belief. Doctors want you to know that too much love making can actually decrease your guys’ sperm count, which can take a few days to rebound.
Doctors want you to know that making love everyday is not a good idea, it is better to stick with making love every other day in the week leading up to ovulation and the week after. It won’t hurt to do it less that that because sperm can live inside a woman’s body up to 48 hours.
If a woman is tracking ovulation, it is okay to do the deed the day before, on, or after. It is best to do what works for each couple, but doctors suggest not making love every day if trying to conceive.
14Start On Vitamins Before The Pregnancy
Whether you are using ovulation prediction kits or not trying but not preventing, it is a good idea to add prenatal vitamins into your life. Taking prenatals are important because they ensure your body is getting all of the minerals and vitamins needed to support a healthy pregnancy.
Prenatal vitamins can prevent some birth defects. Women who do not receive enough folic acid may have a baby with a neural tube defect. Doctors want women trying to conceive to take prenatals before conception to make sure their bodies have enough nutrients and because neural tube defects often occur in the first month of pregnancy.
Some women do not find out their pregnant until they miss their first period, but taking prenatals before conception ensures that you and your babe will have the needed good stuff from the beginning.
13Does Birth Control Delay Pregnancy?
With a few exceptions, a woman’s fertility will go right back to what it was destined to be immediately after the stop of birth control. A woman’s level of fertility depends on many things (age, life style, etc.)
So many women worry about lingering effects of birth control. Doctors want women to know that for most women, the return of fertility is fairly rapid, so being on birth control for 5, 10 or even 20 years should not delay getting pregnant.
This varies from woman to woman, but birth control is reversible and none have long lasting effects on one’s ability to get pregnant. There are many underlying reasons why a couple is not getting pregnant, but birth control will not be one of them.
12Do Fertility Lubes Works?
There are many fertility lubricants on the market, but the question on everyone’s mind is - do they really work? The issue with lubricants is that the wrong lube can hinder fertilization and pregnancy.
Some lubricants damage sperm by the pH of the lubricant, the thickness may slow down sperm, or if it is watery because sperm can absorb water and become damage.
Some may think good old fashion saliva may do the trick, but the truth is, spit is way to acidic to use when trying to conceive- so that option is out. Doctors say the best environment is vaginal fluids, but that is not always possible.
If fertility lubricants seem like the best option, it is best to do research and find ones that are formulated to be pH balanced and contain calcium and magnesium ions (which may be beneficial to the fertilization process.) Finding a lubricant that does not have parabens or glycerin is recommended.
11Weight Can Make A Difference
Packing on extra pounds can disrupt the balance of hormones that influence ovulation and fertilization which can reduce chances of getting pregnant. Being overweight can increase your risk of developing polycystic ovarian syndrome which can cause women to produce too much testosterone that can shut down ovulation.
If you are overweight and planning to get pregnant within the next year (or few) doctors suggest committing to healthy eating, regular exercise and losing a few pounds. Of course, it is still possible to get pregnant while overweight, but doctors suggest losing some extra weight if obese or overweight before trying to conceive.
Being overweight or obese can cause serious issues during pregnancy as well, so it is best to create and stick with a healthy life style before trying to conceive.
10The Older The Mom, The Older The Eggs?
Some may know, while other will be surprised will to learn that age can help or hinder pregnancy! Age does play a key role in the woman’s ability to conceive due to reduction in quantity and quality of her eggs.
Doctors say a women’s peak fertility years are during the 20’s and by 30, chances of becoming pregnant are a little smaller and by age 40 most women will have difficulty getting pregnant without intervention.
Of course, fertility is different for every woman, but experts say by age 35 fertility begins to decline. If you’d like to wait to have children at a later age, freezing your eggs until you’re ready may be a good option. Seeing a fertility specialist is a really good idea if you are an older woman and wanting to conceive.
9How Safe Is The Pull Out Method?
If avoiding pregnancy is the goal, doctors say the pull-out method is not the best method. For every 100 women who use the pull-out method perfectly, 4 will get pregnant. There is a chance that a woman can get pregnant from pre-ejaculation, the semen landed on the vulva, or if the man does not pull out in time.
Of course, this method works for a lot of people, but it is not suggested if pregnancy is absolutely not desired. This method is not as effective as other types of birth control, but it is better than doing nothing at all if you do not want to get pregnant.
If this is the only method that sounds appealing, it is best to have the man be aware of his ability of self-control and to trust the man that he is fully willing and able to use this method responsibly.
8Which Positions Are Best?
It is possible for women to get pregnant in almost any love making position. Doctors say there has not been much evidence that shows that a certain position will increase chances of pregnancy. It is rumored that the ideal position is one that allows sperm to be deposited as close to the cervix as possible, but there has not been any scientific research to support that claim.
Although there is not much evidence, it really does not hurt to try. The missionary position increases the degree of penetration and allows the sperm to be deposited close to the cervical opening. The doggy style position allows for a deeper penetration as well, so the sperm is deposited near the cervix. It does not hurt to try, but there is not much evidence to back up these claims.
7Ever Heard Of Head Stands?
It seems logical that if a woman holds her legs in the air, the sperm will move to towards the cervix. The theory is based around gravity. A woman trying to conceive most likely wants to keep every last little swimmer in her that she can, and elevating her hips could keep in any escapees.
Doctors want couples to know that there really is no solid evidence to back up this theory, but it does not hurt to try. Doctors say it is a good tip to lay in bed for about 15 minutes after intercourse, but you do not need your feet and hips in the air. Your pelvis does not move when you put your legs in the air.
If you wait 10-15 minutes after doing the deed, the sperm that is going to get to the cervix will be in the cervix. Perhaps those weak sperm could benefit from some help?
6Don't Forget About Peaking In The Bedroom
Some believe that a woman’s orgasm during love making can help get a woman pregnant. Doctors want those trying to conceive to know that it could help, but it is not really necessary.
It is not clear if having an orgasm affects the ability to get pregnant, but it cannot hurt. Having an orgasm is scientifically proven to help one relax, and stress can be a huge baby-making blocker.
Another popular theory is the vacuum effect, which is the theory that during orgasm, the uterus contracts drawing in sperm after ejaculation. One study found that women who have orgasm retain more sperm.
This is a commonly believed idea because it is known that a women’s fluids work to help sperm move more freely. A woman can definitely get pregnant without reaching an orgasm, but it can help, and hey- it feels amazing!
5What Happens When Mother Nature Visits?
Whether you are trying to get pregnant or looking for ways to avoid pregnancy, most people wonder if they can get pregnant on their period. Doctors want to clear the air on this topic, and the answer is…well, yes and no.
More than likely a woman’s ovulation is several days away from their period, which decreases the chance of conceiving during your period. If you happen to be a woman with a shorter cycle, there is a chance of getting pregnant during your period.
This is because sperm can live inside a woman between 2-5 days. If a woman has sex towards the end of their bleeding, they could in theory, conceive four or five days later with early ovulation. This is a topic that has different answers that vary from woman to woman, but doctors suggest, if trying not to conceive, using a birth control method is the best bet.
4Can Parents Really Choose The Gender?
There is no scientific evidence to prove that love making positions and life style changes can guarantee the gender of a baby.
It cannot hurt to try, according to doctors, but don’t get your hopes up. There are rumors that deep penetration is key to having a boy and to make love 2 to 3 days before ovulation is at its peak for a girl. Some people swear by the Chinese gender chart and moon phases while others swear by diet and having their man avoid tight fitting underwear.
Of course, there is the option to spend tens of thousands of dollars to get the gender that is desired. For those who do not have the money to shell out, it will not hurt to try the MANY methods to conceive a certain gender, but just know, you may not get what you want.
3Breastfeeding As Birth Control
Many women wonder if breastfeeding can be a form of birth control. Doctor’s say that breastfeeding can delay ovulation, but not to rely on it for birth control if you are not comfortable getting pregnant again.
The issue here is it can be hard to determine exactly how long breastfeeding delays ovulation for each women. Fewer than 2 in 100 women will get pregnant while exclusively (around the clock) breastfeeding an infant younger than 6 months (as long as you aren’t having your period yet.)
Those odds can change quickly once baby starts sleeping through the night and nursing less. Even if babies nursing habits have not changed, it is possible to still get pregnant because you’re fertile around the time you ovulate which happens before you get your period. Doctors advise that if pregnancy is not something you are okay with, to use birth control every time you do the deed, even if breastfeeding.
2Women Shouldn't Always Be The Only Ones To Blame
When a woman cannot get pregnant, she most likely blames herself. A million thoughts may run through her head about what she could be doing better to increase her chances of conceiving.
Doctors want you to know, that you may be fine, it may be your partner who is to blame. It is known that about 11% of couples have trouble conceiving or sustaining a pregnancy. For about 1/3 of infertility cases, the problem lies solely on the male partner.
One in twenty men have low numbers of sperm in their ejaculation. There are many reasons why a man is infertile, such as medical problems (such as kidley failure), medications, blockage, or sperm count. The good news is, many causes of male infertility can be treated. So, rest easy ladies, it may just be your guy.
1The Body Can Limit Chances
If after months of ovulation tracking, and frequent love making there is still no positive pregnancy test - a woman’s body may be to blame. A common reason for fertility trouble may be linked to ovulation troubles, which means a woman’s eggs do not mature in the ovaries or the ovaries fail to release an egg.
Another frequent problem is poor egg quality, which means that the number of eggs and the quality of the eggs is to blame. A blocked or damaged fallopian tube is another culprit because it prevents sperm from getting to the egg and prevents the egg from getting to the uterus.
Polycystic ovarian syndrome which means that small follicles in the ovaries do not develop into the larger mature follicles that release eggs. Doctor’s want women to know that fertility problems do happen, and the only way to diagnose and treat them is to get checked out. There are ways to still conceive, but it will be through the help of a doctor.
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