This post is brought to you by Babystart® – thanks for helping to support our SAHMily.
It’s an exciting time when a couple decides it’s time to start trying for a family, a journey that on the internet is often referred to as Trying To Conceive or TTC.
However, both women and men quickly realise that there’s a lot more to getting pregnant than they might have thought, and it’s not always as simple as just stopping contraception and getting started. There’s an art to getting pregnant for many couples, and it starts with a good understanding of fertility.
So, here’s five things you might now know about fertility, that you definitely should get your head around as you try to conceive.
1. It Might Not Happen Straight Away
Many women have spent much of their adult lives avoiding pregnancy through contraception, so imagine their surprise when they learn that getting pregnant isn’t something that’s just going to happen immediately. There are actually only a few days out of every cycle when a woman can fall pregnant, and it’s pretty easy to miss them altogether if you aren’t looking out for them or you don’t know what you look for. These fertility windows are on average 6 days long, and occur in the five days before occupation, and in the 24 after ovulation. This is because sperm can live for about 5 days, but the ovum only lives for 12-24 hours.
2. Problems Are Not Always With Women
Unfortunately, there’s a persistent belief that issues with fertility all end up being traced back to women. This prevalent way of thinking is nothing more than a remnant of a sexist past, and definitely not true. People rarely know that around 40% of the time fertility issues relate to male factors instead of women. When women don’t understand this they aren’t able to identify where the issue is, and they often stress themselves imagining that the problem lies with them. Luckily, there are simple at-home tests from Babystart® that allow for both low sperm count and low fertility in women to be tested in a few minutes. That way, you’ll know where to start taking action!
3. Sex Should Be Regular, Not Crazed
If you’re trying to fall pregnant it’s always a good idea to practice regular sex, but there’s no need to get out of hand. Knowing your fertility windows is the first step, but it’s easy to get overwhelmed and stressed if you’re trying to force yourself or your partner to have sex more than you can handle. While once everyday is a good measure during the time you’re trying to conceive, once every two days might be all you need. There’s certainly nothing that says you must have sex more than once a day, particularly if that doesn’t work for you.
4. Sperm Health Can Be Boosted Too
For those concerned about their partner’s sperm health, you should know there are things that can be done. All kinds of factors impact on male fertility, such as your partner’s diet, exercise routine, smoking and drinking habit, and even the way they hold their computer. While prevalent rumors that tight underwear is a problem, studies suggest it is not. However, studies have suggested that the heating of the testicles from having computers in the lap can cause issues with sperm. Healthy diets are fantastic as well, for your partner individually as well as for their sperm count. Men should work at increasing the zinc in their diet, an important mineral for sperm health, which is found in lean beef, lamb, eggs, barley, legumes, nuts, and oysters.
5. It’s Ok To Take A Break
We get it, trying to fall pregnant is harder than it first appears. And when you’re being greeted every cycle with failure, it gets stressful fast. One of the most important things you can probably know about fertility if you’re a couple trying to conceive is that it’s ok to take a break. Obviously you’ll need to consider your own situation, particularly in terms of age, but if you feel that the process is harming your relationship, take a month or two off and get back on track. Keep up with your healthy diet and lifestyle, but remove that stress so you can strengthen your relationship to try again.
Before You See A Doctor…
If you and your partner are struggling with fertility issues and you aren’t sure what to do, there are actions you can take before seeing a fertility doctor.
Babystart® are a range of at-home fertility tests available at almost any pharmacy. They are all registered medical devices. These tests aim to give you back control of your fertility journey, allowing you to test both female and male fertility as well as ovulation. They are really easy, and can be done right in your own home, which is particularly important if you or your partner feel uncomfortable going to the doctor. The Sperm Test is more than 97% accurate, and will help you decide if you need to take the next step and consult a doctor.
The Babystart® range is available from any good pharmacy and is a must for any couples wanting more information about their fertility. Make sure you always read the label and only use as directed, and feel free to share any stories with us about how Babystart® has helped you on your TTC journey!