When is too Soon to be Concerned?


Dear Midwife,
I was on the pill for 13 years. I stopped my pills on 12/1/08. I got my period on 12/7/08 and 1/8/09. I am still not pregnant.

I have had lab work and been given a clean bill of health. I also have been having plenty of practice trying to make the baby!

At what point should I worry that I have not conceived?


If you are less than 35, you should be concerned IF you are ovulating and have tried for 12 months (usually 13 cycles).

You can check to see if you are ovulating with an ovulation predictor kit or with basal body temperatures, but it can take a little while after hormonal contraception for the body to resume ovulation. If you are over 35, the rule is 6 months, not 12.

-- Cynthia, CNM. PhD.

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Cynthia Flynn

Cynthia Flynn, CNM. PhD, is the General Director of the Family Health and Birth Center which provides prenatal, birth, postnatal, gynecological and primary health care to underserved women and their families in Washington, D.C. Recently Cynthia served as Associate Professor of Nursing at Seattle University. There she not only taught, but remained in full scope clinical midwifery practice at Valley Medical Center where she cared for pregnant and birthing women, and practices well-woman gynecology, family planning, and treatment of sexually transmitted diseases.

Cynthia founded Columbia Women's Clinic and Birth Center, where she took care of pregnant women and infants up to two weeks of age and attended both birth center and hospital births. Before Cynthia earned her CNM, she worked as a registered nurse in labor and delivery and postpartum and is a certified Doula and Doula trainer.