Why is it that some women seem to be able to get pregnant quickly, while for others it is more of a struggle to conceive? Of course, there are many factors that can affect male and female fertility, but if you are trying to get pregnant and would like some advice on how you can help speed things along, here are some dos and don’ts that you might want to bear in mind.
DO have lots of sex!
Research has shown that, on average, a couple wanting to get pregnant have sex 104 times before finally conceiving – so get busy between the sheets! Don’t be too disappointed if you don’t get pregnant straight away – not only can it take a woman’s body a little while to recover from birth control pills, but pregnancy is a complicated biological business. Not every egg released from a woman’s ovaries will be successfully fertilised no matter how many times you ‘do it’, and of those that are successfully fertilised, only around 1 in 3 will actually implant into the uterus and develop into an embryo. Be patient!
Stress can have all sorts of implications for your health, not least in terms of becoming pregnant. If you are stressed, it won’t create a good environment to nurture a baby, so you may find it more difficult to get pregnant in the first place. Try taking exercise, visiting a therapist or your doctor, or of course (if possible!) removing the source of stress from your life.
DO eat a healthy diet
Being pregnant takes a lot out of your body, and if you’re not in good shape, you’ll not only find it more difficult to become pregnant, but you may also be at higher risk of developing complications during pregnancy and childbirth too. To give your body the best chance of becoming pregnant, it makes sense to prepare your body by being in the best shape you can possibly be. A normal, balanced diet is recommended, making sure to eat lots of vitamin-rich fresh fruit and vegetables, lean protein, calcium-rich dairy products and complex carbohydrates.
DON’T drink too much alcohol
It is generally recommended that pregnant women shouldn’t drink too much alcohol, and many women choose to abstain from alcohol completely during their pregnancy. However, women who are looking to become pregnant should also consider cutting back on alcohol. Moreover, your male partner should also take some responsibility here – drinking too much alcohol can reduce the quality of his sperm, which can also make it more difficult to get pregnant. The same goes for caffeine and nicotine – all of these chemicals can make it more difficult to become pregnant.
DO maintain a healthy weight
Being overweight or underweight can affect your hormone levels and make it more difficult to become pregnant. If you are very underweight or overweight, why not visit a doctor and let them know that you would like to become pregnant? They can advise you of the best ways to increase or decrease your weight to within a ‘normal’ range – but be patient, this one might take some time. Never be tempted to crash diet or gain weight too quickly – slow and steady weight maintenance is the healthiest and safest way.