How to: Boost your fertility

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

How to boost your fertility

It’s easy to assume that when you meet the right person you’ll settle down, have sex and get pregnant. After all, that is how it works right? However, when the time comes it might not be as easy as all that. There are loads of things that can throw your body out of rhythm and make it hard for you to fall pregnant. Here are a few ways to counteract these factors and boost your chances when the time comes.

Watch your weight
Excess body fat poses a number of risks to your health. One of them being that it can lead to an overproduction of certain hormones that will disrupt ovulation. Your menstrual cycle may be less regular, you may ovulate less often and you therefore will find it harder to get pregnant. However, on the flip side, too little body fat also poses problems. Your body may not be producing enough hormones to ovulate each month or to sustain a pregnancy.

Quit smoking
Like you needed another reason to quit! The chemicals in cigarettes damage your eggs, interfering with the fertilisation and implantation process. It also causes the ovaries to age more quickly. According to experts, the ovaries of a 35-year-old smoker function as if they were in a 42-year-old’s body. This means they are less fertile.

Know your cycle
The most important part of getting pregnant is timing. A normal menstrual cycle lasts 25-35 days (you start counting on the first day of your period). Your “fertile window” is usually the day of ovulation (typically day 14) and four to five days before. However, ovulation varies dramatically and can occur as early as day 6 to as late as day 21. But don’t despair. There are ways you can find out when you are ovulating. Try an ovulation kit from your local pharmacy, or just have sex as often as you can around the middle of your cycle. There are worse ways to spend a weekend!

Don’t get stressed
There are so many people out there who will say the same thing… “as soon as we stopped trying, we fell pregnant.” You might want to scratch these people’s eyes out if you have been trying for a long time with no luck, but listen to what they are saying. Stress and anxiety can make it harder to get pregnant, as it affects both you and your partner. Stress throws off hormone production, meaning your menstrual cycle may change. Try to forget about the end goal and just enjoy the journey.

Don’t forget to have lots of sex!
The demands of a busy life can dampen the sex drive. However, if you are trying to conceive don’t just rely on your “fertile window.” According to research, women who have sex regularly have more predictable menstrual cycles and normal ovulation. One theory is that your partner produces hormones that influence your reproductive system, plus weekly sex will ensure you produce more oestrogen. Having sex every 36 to 48 hours during your “fertile window” will also make the most of your ovulation. So get busy!

Other articles you may be interested in:
Treatments to avoid while pregnant
Surviving the silly season while pregnant
Sex and your pregnancy
Five ways to prepare your body for childbirth
Attack of the hormones

Written by

Emily Pettit-Coetzee is a freelance writer and a blogger of lovely things. She spends her days writing about everything from corporate finance to teen fashion and has a weakness for vintage fashion and red lipstick.

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  1. WAFIQA ABBAS

    I’m far from having any kids but these tips will be great to know for the future.

    2 years ago •

  1. LOUISE

    We’re planning our second child now and I’m glad to see that I can tick all of the above off my checklist for some peace of mind :-) Here’s hoping all goes well (and fast!!!)

    3 years ago •

  1. thokozilemohohole

    I didn’t know that one has to watch their weight to boost their fertility reason being I have seen over weight people and obese women give birth to healthy babies, great tips.

    3 years ago •

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