Advice to help you become pregnant

To facilitate conception, it is a good idea to change certain habits

Now that you have made the decision to have a baby, the first concern arises: how long does it take to get pregnant?

There are couples who get pregnant straight away, but that is the exception rather than the rule. Sometimes getting pregnant is neither easy nor quick, and the majority of couples take a good few months to get there.

It is normal to get impatient, because when we decide we want to have a baby, the idea is so exciting that we want it straight away. But you need to try not to get anxious, because stress can have a negative impact on conception.

Nevertheless, there are some habits we can pick up to increase the likelihood of getting pregnant. Leading a healthy lifestyle without stress and avoiding unhealthy activities can help us to conceive.

The first step: go to the doctor

Before you start trying to conceive, it is advisable to visit the gynecologist to settle any concerns you may have, and to know if there is anything in your lifestyle that could make conception more difficult, or any disorder that means that extra care should be taken while you are pregnant.

The doctor will assess the health of both partners (the health of the future father is also very important), and will check if either of you carries any hereditary illness and if there are any other factors that could be an obstacle to getting pregnant, such as obesity or diabetes, to offer an appropriate treatment plan.

After that, once equipped with the information on your habits and medical data, you will be given tailored advice to help you to conceive as quickly as possible and the future mother will be prescribed folic acid (vitamin B9), to help to prevent congenital defects in the baby's brain and spinal column.

Fertile days

It would helpful for the two of you to prepare a menstrual cycle calendar to work out the most fertile days. Your cycle begins on the day you start your period, and ends when you start the next one. Your most fertile days are the two days before the anticipated date of ovulation and the day of ovulation itself, since the sperm cells live for between of 48 and 72 hours and the egg a maximum of 24 hours.

In a 28-day menstrual cycle, ovulation typically takes place on day 14, and the most fertile days are between day 12 and 14. The problem is that the 28-day pattern does not always repeat itself, and not all women have regular cycles.

When cycles are irregular, it may be useful to use an ovulation test (available at pharmacies), which measure the presence of a hormone in the urine to detect the most fertile days.

Healthy diet

Now more than never, it is important to follow a healthy and balanced diet. Everything we eat has an effect on our body, and also on the fetus. That is why as soon as you decide to try for a baby, you should start to look after yourself as if you were expecting, because you never know when you will get pregnant.

It is also important to try to avoid being overweight or very thin. Both situations have a negative impact on the likelihood of conception.

No to harmful habits

Now is the time to cut out the habits that can reduce fertility and are risky to the pregnancy, such as smoking and alcohol. It may also be wise to reduce your consumption of caffeine. These habits are not good for your health or for that of the baby.

For the same reason, you should avoid toxic environments and excessive exposure to pollution or pesticides, which can cause changes to the endocrine system.

Self-medication is off the table

Taking medicines that have not been prescribed for you by your doctor is very risky. Some can reduce fertility and others increase the risk of miscarriage. You should always consult your doctor before taking medicines, more than ever now you are thinking about making a new life.

Yes to exercise

Regular exercise is good for body and mind. Any time is a good time to start. If you are not accustomed to exercise, you can start gradually, for example by going for a daily walk. Yoga, Pilates and swimming are three very healthy options that can also be pursued during pregnancy (although with an expert instructor who knows how to adapt exercises to pregnancy). Doing exercise together can be excellent not only for you but for your partner.
From the moment you decide to have a baby, it is a good idea to look after yourself as if you were having a baby

Get rid of stress

You should try to take life a little slower, avoid high-stress situations and, if necessary, adopt some techniques to help you to relax. If daily life is stressful, it is advisable to slow down, because ongoing stress can change your menstrual cycle and the production of sperm cells.

And if the baby does not happen?

What to do if you do not get pregnant There are many influencing factors. Usually, 85% of couples manage to get pregnant during the first year. If you do not manage to do that in this period, it would be advisable to go to your doctor, to assess whether you should pursue assisted reproduction methods.

For women over the age of 35, it is advisable to visit a doctor if they do not manage to conceive after six months, since ovarian reserves at that age are depleted.

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