If you have recently made the big decision to start trying for a baby it goes without saying that you will be spending lots of time under the sheets with your partner in your attempt to conceive, LOTS. But did you know that conception fun is actually very serious business? There are a whole range of factors to consider when it comes to the art of getting pregnant, including timing and how to have sex.
So then, to prevent potential issues when trying to conceive, it is worth looking at tips for keeping your sex life passionate and pleasurable. Not only is it important to keep sex fun, but the how and when to have sex are also key to your baby making success. Take the ‘fertile window’ for example: did you know that technically there are only 6 days in a female’s cycle when pregnancy is possible (more on this oh-so-important “window” later)?
And are you aware of the link between sexual dissatisfaction and fertility issues? That’s right - enjoying sex actually plays a strong role in fertility. Perhaps having a pleasurable and fun sex life is starting to sound more important in your efforts to conceive than you previously had realised? The good news is you don’t need to start dragging the passion and pleasure out of the sexual act itself, when there are loads of ways to keep things exciting and fun!
The last thing you need is for conception to become an added burden or stressor on your relationship. Trying for a baby can and should be fun, sensual, pleasurable and playful – and this is much better for your relationship in the long run. If you want to retain the excitement of sex with your partner, rather than it becoming a dreaded chore, it may be time to brush up on your Sex Ed knowledge when it comes to keeping sex fun whilst trying to conceive.
1. When to Have Sex: The Fertile Window
Have you heard of the infamous ‘fertile window?’ Yes, I am referring to those few days each month when the magic of conceiving a baby can actually take place. Technically, pregnancy is only possible for 6 days in a female’s cycle, reflecting the five days before ovulation and the day of ovulation – the fertile window. During these 6 days, you will want to get busy in the sheets to maximize your possibility of conception.
Outside of this window, your fertility is significantly lower. If you have sex 6 or more days before you ovulate, your chance of falling pregnant is practically zero. This possibility increases to around 10% if you have sex five days before you ovulate. Your likelihood of pregnancy increases progressively up until the two days before (and inclusive of) the day of ovulation.
You're only fertile for 6 days!
Following the end of the ‘fertile window,’ your chance of pregnancy declines drastically. In fact, around 12-24 hours post-ovulation, you may as well write the rest of the cycle off. You’re not able to get pregnant from this point on during that cycle and, while having sex for fun is totally recommended, don’t expect to conceive at this time.
If you’re one of those unplanned women out there, or you have an irregular cycle, you may not be aware when your ‘fertile window’ is or when you’re due to ovulate. In this case, it’s recommended that you have sex with your partner even more regularly than women who are paying attention to, or are aware of, their fertile window. For you, it’s recommended that you have sex with your partner every 2 or 3 days to help optimise your chance of conceiving. Even more of a reason to keep things exciting in the bedroom considering you will be spending lots of time in there!
7 How to Have Sex
Did I lose you in the above information and you’ve already skipped to this section? If so, let me provide a recap of the above:
- The ‘fertile window’ refers to the 6 days leading up to (and including) ovulation.
- You are the most fertile the 3 days leading up to (and including) ovulation.
- The probability of you actually falling pregnant is drastically increased if you have sex in these 3 days leading up to (and including) ovulation. In fact, if you have sex on these days, you have a 27-33% chance of conceiving!
Now that we have the biology part out of the way, let’s get onto the more exciting stuff! You now know when to have sex, but how should you be doing it? The good news is you don’t need to get into kinky acts or role playing in order to get pregnant (unless you want to of course!). In contrast, you also don’t need to rely on the monotonous missionary position every night either, like certain old wives tales suggest.
No single research or study has ever produced results to show that one position is better for pregnancy success.
What is particularly important, however, is the frequency of ejaculation. In Dr Greening’s research (an Australian specialist in reproductive endocrinology and fertility), she found that ejaculating daily significantly increases the genetic quality of sperm, and does not lower the sperm count enough to negatively affect fertility.
Besides the fact that loads of sex will make your partner happy and improve the quality of his sperm, it can also be a positive for your own libido. You may begin to realise that the more sex you have, the more you want it and your desire for hitting up the bedroom kicks in every day! Naturally, this will increase your likelihood of falling pregnant and, perhaps just importantly, it will happen in a loveable, pleasurable, and lust-filled way!
6 The Benefits of Sex
If having sex has become monotonous or a chore through your many nights of trying to conceive, how about you consider why sex is beneficial to boost your motivation towards sex. When it comes to the role of enjoying sex in fertility, you should definitely take note here if you want to get pregnant.
Research has shown that when a couple lose the romance in the art of sex, serious issues can arise. For example, in one study, females with fertility issues were 15% more likely to experience sexual dysfunction and significantly lower satisfaction with their sex lives. Perhaps, to prevent potential problems, it’s worth considering tips for raising your fertility whilst simultaneously fuelling your libido.
Sex is good for your health
Aside from the obvious benefits of sex (fun, pleasure, relaxation, and to conceive), why else is it a good idea to get busy in the bedroom? Take the added benefit of improving your sleep, as a starter. That’s right; a good round of sex is one of the best ways to get a good night sleep. Also, sex can help restore your energy levels.
Making love is also a natural combatant against depression. Sex is a great re-energiser – for males it reenergizes them physically, and for women it reenergizes them emotionally.
5 What Causes Sex to Lose Its Passion When Trying to Conceive?
Unfortunately, for some couples, the act of trying for a baby can end up turning into more of a duty or task every month at your fertile window. Have you ever wondered why the pleasure becomes replaced with a sense of pressure and urgency as soon as you place your efforts and focus on trying to fall pregnant? What changes your sexual life from one of fun and spontaneity to one of monotony and routine?
Mainly, it has to do with now having to focus your efforts on planning the timing of sex every month around ovulation. The concentrated effort replaces letting our lustrous feelings, wants and needs from guiding sex into taking place. You’re likely to be using a range of tools to most accurately predict the success of conceiving during your fertile window, such as calendar apps, ovulation kits or temperature charts.
When sex becomes a chore, it will turn you both off
These tools and devices, paired with the heavy emphasis placed on the timing of sex, take away all sense of spontaneity. And, suddenly, it becomes irrelevant if we have our sexual desire or mojo on that given time or not – it is an absolute must that sex takes place on those designated days come rain, hail or shine!
4 Keep it Spontaneous
When sex becomes a schedule and routine, not only does it begin to lack enjoyment and pleasure, both you and your partner may actually start to experience performance issues. Your partner can start to feel like he is merely a sperm donor, while you may be getting anxious about failing to conceive each month.
These types of thinking can result in problems with performance on either side. To compound the problem, you might start to notice that you’re not enjoying your sex life as much as before and this can further result in negative thinking such as “My partner doesn’t find me attractive” or “I’m just not good at sex anymore.”
So, what’s the solution here?
The perfect remedy is to start having sex again purely for fun and pleasure; no set routine, just when the feeling is right and you are both in the mood. Have sex outside your fertile window, when the chance you will fall pregnant is very slim, so that there is absolutely zero focus on baby-making sex.
According to Mindy Schiffman (an American Clinical Psychologist and Sex Therapist), "Lovemaking that's not performance-driven helps you reconnect to your sensuality…It also has an interesting way of taking the pressure off the times you need to make love and helps you avoid 'tonight's the night' syndrome."
3 Mix Things Up and Keep it Fresh
Another way to bring back the fun in the bedroom is by mixing things up. By changing things around, and keeping sex fresh and exciting, it can be extremely beneficial for your sex life.
Renee Horowitz (Obstetrician and founder of the Center for Sexual Wellness in Michigan) sheds light on why this is the case, "There's biological evidence that novel experiences cause the release of dopamine in the brain [dopamine is a chemical that affects the pleasure center of your brain]…That's why it's so much easier to get excited in a new relationship -- everything is novel, and your brain responds accordingly."
Now's the time to try something new
Of course it is not possible to switch partners each time the excitement fades in your relationship, however there are ways to keep your sex life varied and exciting. By mixing up some of the other factors in your sex, you can keep releasing that dopamine on a regular basis.
Have sex in different positions, try out new places, or mix up the time of day/night. Wake your partner early for a surprise morning quickie before work. Try having sex in the kitchen, shower or on the patio!
2 Get the Mood Right
There are loads of little things that you can do beforehand to set the scene for a great night of sex – don’t underestimate your ability to seduce and triumph! A nicely lit and lovely smelling, quiet space just for the two of you is a great way to prepare for a romantic atmosphere.
Definitely make sure that you have a space in which you will be uninterrupted and all alone. Put your mobile phones on silent (or even better, switch them off!), turn off the TV and anything else that has the potential to ruin a magical moment.
Perhaps you can buy some nice sheets, yummy smelling candles, and sexy lingerie - whatever it takes to make sex that bit more special. For something that extra exciting and special, you can even prepare a big surprise your partner – such as a romantic weekend away or a sultry rendezvous!
Don’t Forget Foreplay
In addition to making time for getting the mood right, allowing time and effort for sexual connection through foreplay is just as important. Kissing, massaging, sensual touching, stroking….the list goes on (and I will stop there before it gets too X-rated!).
The action before sex can make the act of sex itself so much more intense and lustrous. The act of touching and kissing is vital in maintaining closeness and bonding with your partner, so that sex doesn't just become about baby making.
1 Try Different Positions
We all get a bit lazy at times and revert to what we’re comfortable with and what comes easy – after all, we’re only human. The same goes with sex. In your sexual relationship with your partner, it’s likely that you have a few “old favourites” and reliable positions. However, there are lots of variations to both positions and slight changes to movements.
Why not improvise by throwing in some new moves? How about giving a go twisting your pelvis to maximize sensation, or squeezing your vaginal muscles in different ways and times, or changing the angle of your legs? The key here is that anything different goes!
Take advantage of sex while you can
It won’t be long before the two of you becomes three with the pitter patter of little feet! So, why not seize the opportunity to have as much fun in the bedroom while you still can? Any of your friends with kids will tell you that making time for sex is only going to get harder when there are children in the picture. Go for broke now, before it’s too late – instil a bit of YOLO in the bedroom!
If you’ve wanted to try something new, but have been putting it off, don’t put it off any longer! Wanting to experiment with toys or take a raunchy weekend away? Then get moving today – no better time than the present, right?