Not every couple who is ready to start a family has the good fortune to get pregnant just when they want it to happen. Many different things from serious medical conditions to simply lifestyle issues can lead to infertility, and only a specialist fertility doctor can give anyone medical advice. But any couple who wants to get pregnant should try these simple tips to boost their chances. Nothing is guaranteed when it comes to fertility and pregnancy, but couple can make some healthy choices to improve their odds.
– Women should track their menstrual cycle so couples can try at the times they are most likely to be successful – roughly days 11 through 21 of a woman’s cycle – which is not to say those are the only days they can try! Home ovulation tracking kits can even help monitor hormone levels.
– Aim for a moderate amount of exercise. This is not the time for intense fitness training, but being a couch potato won’t help either. That goes for men and women. If either partner is obese, it is best to try to lose some weight because obesity does decrease the odds of conceiving. Again, moderate exercise is important, and it is best to be a healthy weight before becoming pregnant. Obese women have a higher risk of pregnancy complications including high blood pressure, and underweight women are at risk of their babies having a low birth weight.
– Men should avoid saunas, long bicycle rides, snug underwear and anything else that increases the temperature of their scrotum. Higher temperatures mean lower sperm counts.
– Couples who use lubricant should make sure it does not contain anything that could damage sperm.
– Cut down on alcohol and caffeine use, and absolutely do not use recreational drugs. Avoid non steroidal anti inflammatory drugs. A doctor can advise couples on whether any prescriptions, supplements or over the counter medications they use might interfere with their fertility.
– Avoiding stress and getting enough rest are important all of the time, but especially when a couple is hoping to conceive.
– Women should increase their folic acid intake while trying to get pregnant rather than waiting for a positive pregnancy test.
– Men should make sure they are getting enough vitamin E, selenium and zinc.
It also makes sense to visit the doctor before trying to conceive. A doctor, either a family doctor or a fertility doctor, can advise couples about any specific risks they face due to their family and individual medical histories as well as offer more advice about conceiving and having a healthy pregnancy.
If a couple does not conceive within a year while trying, that meets the definition of infertility and they should consider seeking help from a specialist fertility doctor who can advise them about the best approach to fertility treatment. Couples over the age of 35 should talk to a fertility doctor sooner because age is a factor in conception – for both men and women.