So you want to get pregnant. When you’re ready to have a baby, you might wonder if there’s any difference between having sex for fun and having sex for pregnancy. The short answer: not really. However, there are a number of factors that can come into play when it comes to upping your chances for conceiving. From foods to positions to timing, we found the answers to your most pressing and searched questions when it comes to making a baby while making some whoopie.
How can I get pregnant fast and easy?
While Dr. Mary Jane Minkin, OBGYN at Yale University, says she can’t guarantee anyone to get pregnant “fast and easy,” she does tell Scary Mommy that making sure you’re in the best health possible is one of the best ways to help along your fertility, including checking in on any other medical conditions (for example, high blood pressure, diabetes, epilepsy) as “some of the medications used to treat these conditions aren’t great for pregnancy,” she says.
Minkin also recommends starting a prenatal vitamin that has extra folic acid in it. “We do know that babies conceived while Mom is taking folic acid have far fewer neural tube defects (like spina bifida) and other defects.” Another tip? Try to get as close to your ideal healthy body weight as possible. Says Minkin, “We know that women who are significantly overweight or underweight have a harder time conceiving.” And if you are a smoker and/or a heavy drinker, Minkin recommends trying to cut down your habit as much as possible.
When is the best time to get pregnant while having sex?
You know that time of month when your breasts are sore and your lower abdomen is cramping up a little? That’s called ovulation, and it’s the ideal time for conceiving. Women typically ovulate 12 to 14 days before their next period.
How does having sex to get pregnant work?
To understand the best ways to have sex and become pregnant, Dr. Mamuda Aminu, a Senior Clinical Research Associate of sexual reproduction and newborn health at the Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine, tells Scary Mommy that you need to look at the lifespan of the basic requirements for pregnancy, i.e. the sperm and the egg (ovum). “An ejaculated sperm could last as long as five days in a woman’s reproductive tract before it dies. However, a woman’s egg only lasts between 12 and 24 hours before it shrinks and dies, if there is no fertilization. Therefore, under normal circumstances, having sex to get pregnant is really more about timing than anything else,” he says. To boost the chances of getting pregnant, a couple should have sex at least once a day around the ovulation period.
However, Minkin points out “there is still only about a 20% chance of getting pregnant that month” so try not to be disappointed; in fact, just keep trying.
How many times a day should I have sex to get pregnant?
“I encourage women to get to know their cycles,” Minkin says. “Try to have sex every day or every other day around ovulation, and if you have a consistent pattern of ovulation, have sex the day before you ovulate.” As far as how many times a day, Minkin warms that you don’t want to have sex more than once a day since “that can lower sperm counts.” Best to give the male partner a day or two to recharge his, ahem, batteries.
What are the best foods to eat to get pregnant?
While your choices at dinner might not make you pregnant instantly, researchers from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and Harvard Medical School published a review of past studies that examined the impact of diet on fertility, and found that folic acid, vitamin B12, omega-3 fatty acids, and healthy diets such as the Mediterranean diet were linked to have positive effects on fertility. Which means? Load up your plate with yummy leafy greens, olives, olive oil, salmon, and low-fat dairy and yogurt.
What are the best sex positions to get pregnant?
There are a lot of myths out there concerning which sex positions are best to get pregnant. While there are no scientific studies that prove one position is more fertile-friendly than the other, WebMD suggests that missionary (man on top) is typically best for conception. But, really, as Minkin says, your sex position doesn’t make a lot of difference. You can get pregnant with women on top, reverse cowgirl, doggie, etc. Where there’s a will, there’s a way! Minkin does encourage women to lie down for 15-20 minutes after having sex to help sperm swim upstream. “But to be honest, sperm swim pretty quick! So that should allow time for the most vigorous guys to make it up to the cervix,” she says.
What is the best time of day to have sex for pregnancy?
If a study by the University Hospital Zurich is to be believed, it seems the early bird gets the worm! Especially in the springtime. As reported by Flo, their research suggests that having sex before 7:30 a.m. in the months of March, April, and May have the best chances of conceiving. Why? Well, apparently sperms are early risers and are most likely to travel to the egg very early in the morning. Why spring? Because sperm tends to be at its healthiest during these months. Even spermies love their spring cleaning!
How many days does it take to get pregnant?
Assuming everything is running smoothly, not too long. According to VeryWell, conception can take place as soon as three minutes after sexual intercourse, or it may take up to five days. Implantation occurs five to 10 days after fertilization, which means you can get pregnant anywhere from five to 15 days after you had sex.
Having sex to get pregnant might seem like a chore at times, but don’t forget to have fun. Sex is supposed to be fun, after all. And if you need to, Minkin suggests using a lubricant. Because trying to time all of that sexual activity can be a bit stressful!
Written by Brianne Hogan.
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