So, are you thinking about having a baby? Congratulations! Check out our pregnancy planning guide to improve your health, lifestyle, money, and other aspects of your pregnancy. In this guide, we’ll be talking about the things you should do before trying to conceive and why it’s a good idea for you to do them.
Conduct a Pregnant Parent Talk
Experts and actual parents agree: Before you start trying to conceive, talk with your spouse about some of the most critical parenting topics, such as how you’ll split childcare, working vs. staying at home, and religious traditions. You should also be on the same page about finances. This is the time to get into the nitty-gritty of things like your credit score, whether you own or rent your home, and your job security.
Stop Using Contraception Pills
If you’re using contraceptive pills and you want to get pregnant, you’ll need to stop taking them. Contraception pills work by preventing ovulation. So, if you want to get pregnant, you need to start ovulating again. This usually happens within a few months of stopping the pill.
There are a number of different types of contraceptive pills. Some contain only progesterone, while others contain both progesterone and estrogen. The type of pill you’re taking will affect how soon you ovulate after stopping it. If you’re taking a progesterone-only pill, you may ovulate as soon as seven days after your last pill. If you’re taking a combined pill, you may not ovulate for a few months.
If you’re not sure when you’ll ovulate after stopping the pill, you can use a chances of getting pregnant calculator.
Start Tracking Your Cycle
If you want to get pregnant, you need to know when you ovulate. Ovulation is when an egg is released from your ovary and travels down your fallopian tube, ready to be fertilized. To get pregnant, you need to have sex when you’re most fertile, which is usually around the time of ovulation.
There are a few ways you can track your ovulation:
- Use an ovulation predictor kit (available at your local drugstore).
- Use an ovulation calculator (tracking your periods and ovulation is easily done by using the Flo app).
- Keep track of changes in your cervical mucus throughout your cycle. This method is called the Billings ovulation method.
- Use fertility awareness-based methods (FABMs) to chart your cycle. There are a number of different FABMs, but they all involve tracking changes in your body that occur during your menstrual cycle, such as your basal body temperature or the position of your cervix.
In order to get pregnant, you need to have intercourse on your ovulation date. This is the only time during your cycle when you can conceive. There are several ways to figure out when you’re ovulating, including tracking your basal body temperature and using an ovulation calculator.
So, how many days after your period can you anticipate ovulating now that we know what it is? Everyone is different, which makes it hard, but often you can predict when you will ovulate by the length of your period. Your menstruation begins on the first day of your cycle, and most people ovulate between 7 and 21 days into their cycle on average. The precise location of ovulation within that range depends on the length of your cycle. The typical ovulation day is 14 days before the start of your next period.
Start Taking Folic Acid
You’ve probably heard that folic acid is important for pregnant women. Folic acid helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spine. The best way to make sure you’re getting enough folic acid is to take a prenatal vitamin every day, even before you start trying to conceive. You can find prenatal vitamins at most pharmacies.
Folic acid is a water-soluble vitamin that’s found in leafy green vegetables, legumes, nuts, and fortified foods. It’s important for pregnant women to take folic acid because it helps prevent certain birth defects in the baby’s brain and spine. The American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists recommends that all women who are capable of getting pregnant take 400 micrograms (0.4 mg) of folic acid daily.
Quit Smoking & Limit Alcohol Consumption
You should also make sure that your lifestyle is conducive to conception and pregnancy. We know that smoking and drinking are taboos for pregnant women. But did you know that cigarettes and alcohol also have an effect on male fertility? Cutting back on alcohol and quitting smoking are both important ways to improve your chances of conceiving (and align yourself with your partner). In general, a healthier lifestyle—moderate, regular exercise, adequate sleep, and plenty of fruits and vegetables—has been shown to benefit sperm health.
Smoking is one of the worst things you can do for your health, and it’s also terrible for your fertility. If you’re a smoker, now is the time to quit. Not only will it improve your chances of conceiving, but it will also make for a healthier pregnancy. There are many resources available to help you quit smoking, so take advantage of them!
Drinking too much alcohol can interfere with ovulation and make it more difficult to conceive. If you’re trying to conceive, limit your alcohol intake to no more than one drink per day.
Get in Shape
Pregnancy is a physically demanding experience for a partner with a baby, so it’s important to make sure you’re in peak health. Schedule a preconception visit with your gynecologist to discuss your conception plans. They will check that you are up to date on all screenings and can advise you based on what they know about your medical history. It is also recommended that you visit your GP for an annual check-up for blood tests, screenings, and vaccinations to detect or prevent disease before or during pregnancy.
Being overweight or obese can make it more difficult to conceive, so now is a great time to get in shape. Regular exercise and eating a healthy diet will improve your fertility and overall health. If you need help getting started, there are many resources available online and from your local library.
We all know that stress can have a negative effect on our health, but did you know that it can also impact fertility? Studies have shown that stress can interfere with ovulation and make it more difficult to conceive. If you’re trying to conceive, take steps to reduce stress in your life. Exercise, relaxation techniques, and making time for hobbies and activities you enjoy can all help reduce stress levels.
See Your Doctor
If you’re having trouble conceiving, it’s important to see your doctor. They can help identify any underlying medical conditions that may be contributing to infertility. In some cases, fertility treatments may be recommended. If you’re over the age of 35, you should see your doctor if you’ve been trying to conceive for six months without success. If you’re under the age of 35, you should see your doctor if you’ve been trying to conceive for one year without success.
There are many things couples can do before trying to conceive that will improve their chances of success. Making sure you’re getting enough folic acid, quitting smoking, and reducing stress are all important steps. Getting in shape and seeing your doctor are also important measures to take. By taking these steps, you’ll be giving yourself the best chance possible for a successful pregnancy.