The first time you and your wife try to get pregnant, you probably start out a little naïve. You assume that all you need is a nice romantic evening at the right time of the month and you’ll be well on your way to parenthood.
The fact is that most couples are trying to conceive for at least a couple of months before getting it right. Other couples may need to try for up to a year – even if they don’t have any specific fertility problems.
Here are some key things to keep in mind to increase your odds of success when trying to conceive:
- Count off the days. If your wife has a 28-day cycle, she’s going to ovulate on around day 16. That means the best time for trying to conceive is going to be between days 12 and 16. If she has an irregular cycle, however, it can be a bit tougher. You may have to consider a fertility tracking method.
Ditch the lube. Many lubricants have spermicides in them. The ones that don’t still have the potential to interfere with the journey of the sperm to the egg. This is especially true of water-based lubricants. If you need a little moisture, consider using some vegetable oil. It works well and it won’t hinder the sperm’s travel.
- Penetrate deeply. Choose sexual positions for ejaculation that put the semen as close to the cervix as possible. Man behind on knees (also called ‘doggy style’) and man on top (‘missionary position’) are usually thought to be the two best positions for trying to conceive.
- Let gravity give you a hand. It takes about 10 minutes for the sperm to travel to the cervix, where the cervical mucus will whisk it on its way to the egg. Consider putting a pillow under your wife’s hips after you have sex to give those little swimmers a little bit of an extra push.
- Pay attention to your nutrition. There are many preconception vitamins and supplements that can increase your odds of conception. Make sure you’re avoiding certain foods that can cause problems with conception, such as too much caffeine. Look into superfoods like maca that can dramatically increase your odds of success.
Even if you’re doing all of the right things, it can still take a couple of months to get pregnant – longer if you’re over 35. Keep at it, and talk to your doctor if you’re concerned you might be struggling with infertility.