by Jovanna Acevedo Quesada
The journey to parenthood can be unpredictable.
While some folks appear to get pregnant by looking at one another, other couples endure years of fertility treatments.
While we can't predict where you land on the fertility spectrum, we do know that your path will be as unique as the baby you're trying to make!
We've gathered the top 10 strategies to help you achieve a healthy pregnancy.
We aren't able to guarantee these tips will do the trick, but they've helped many couples become proud parents!
1. Educate yourself. Most women admit to not having a full understanding of their own fertility cycles or how the process of conception can be intricate and tricky. We wish it was as simple as "have sex - make baby," but that is unrealistic. We believe it's worthwhile to learn about how your body works and the mechanics of your monthly cycles. Why? Beacuse it helps you pinpoint your personal fertility signs, symptoms, and signals. Greening up your household and trying to live an eco-conscious, healthy lifestyle can also help prepare your body for having a baby.
2. Get a preconception checkup and dental exam: Sure it's not the most fun you can have in an hour, but a full physical from your doctor can help weed out problems that could cause future issues. Make the time to get that Pap smear, blood pressure, weight, and any another nagging issues you've been putting off checked out. Everything we just mentioned by the way, can affect your fertility.
3. Timing is everything. You've gotten the green light to make that baby! Before you wear each other out with nightly escapades, identify when you're fertile. Experts suggest that every other day during your fertile time not only alleviates stress on your coupledom, but allows sperm to "rebuild."
4. Muskrat Love might be the campiest song of all time but it's not a bad choice if you're looking to set the mood. Baby making, if you let it, can become robotic and lifeless for couples. Meditate on your love for one another and let it flow! Don't like Muskrat Love because it will make you giggle? Create your own set of baby making tunes!
5. The Man's Important, too: Sometimes infertility pokes its finger at the man. It's not always a genetic issue, either. Smoking, drinking and other "bad" habits can lead to fewer and lazier swimmers (aka the "spermanators"). Try and get your partner to get their own checkup as you're getting ready for your journey to parenthood.
6. Hang out with pregnant friends, or the ones also trying to conceive. The whole "something in the water" myth may not be myth after all. While there doesn't seem to be any tangible evidence that women tune into one another, it's thought that when cycles play together, they get pregnant together! Pregnancy.Org Member blueyesongod believes this statement 100%. She happens to share her recent pregnancy with 10 members of her church family. "Maybe we all should have gone to bed early that night?” she mentions with a smile. They all got pregnant at the same time.
7. Eat for Two. Not quite yet but...Getting your body ready for pregnancy means it's time to start acting like you're giving another life the best possible chance. In turn, you're giving yourself the best chances, too. There's no need for crash diets, fancy pills, or gimmicks. Eat well and have reasonably sized portions at mealtimes.
8. Getting in shape (if not already). Reality and research shows that exercise elevates your mood and makes your body a tight and healthy engine. As an added bonus, exercise can put the spark back into your sex life. Grab those sneakers and hit a trail or take a walk with a buddy. A brisk walk or slow jog 30 minutes a day, 3 times a week really will make a noticeable difference. This is a great activity for couples!
9. Awkward Scenarios: Legend and Pregnancy.org members say that quite a few folks have become pregnant in the most absolute, bizarre or inconvenient moments. From vacations at the in-laws, standing on your head, to sneaking away and having fun at college graduations, we've heard lots of wacky and wonderful getting pregnant success stories. One of our members swears that having sex at your in-laws works every time.
10. The "R" Word! Nope, not that "R" word! Rather than hear, again, how relaxing will just "let it happen," why not react instead? Read and interact with the signs your body's sharing with you. React to the opportunities your partnership presents. It's more than okay to react to the spectrum of emotions involved with the baby making process. From frustration to elation, trying to get pregnant can be quite the journey! Don't let the goal of having a healthy pregnancy and baby get in the way of your relationship.
All tips and tricks aside, 85% of couples succeed and get pregnant within their first year of trying. If you're finding yourself in the other 15%, don't beat yourselves up. There are lots of factors that can affect your fertility - some you might not even realize. When you're ready for the journey, your doctor can help find solutions that work for you.
What are some of your tips and strategies that worked for you? We'd love to know what they are! Tell us in the comments!
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