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Trying to Get Pregnant: Tips You Can Use Tonight

Catherine McDiarmid-Watt | Friday, June 22, 2012 | 0 comments

Image: Baby hands - hand by hand. Stock Photo credit: haiinee

Boosting your fertility doesn’t have to involve complicated procedures and expensive hormonal treatments when you are trying to get pregnant. Tips you can use such as avoiding certain habits or products that can aggravate your fertility problems can go a long way towards increasing your fertility potential.

It’s important to understand which factors can help bring you closer to your dreams of parenthood. Here are some simple pregnancy tips you can try tonight.

Stay away from cigarette smoke

Sure, smoking might make you look more glamorous and desirable (or so says the tobacco ads), but it’s not going to bring you one step closer to pregnancy. According to the British Medical Association, female smokers are 40% less likely to conceive than women who do not smoke. It’s difficult to say exactly how this happens because here are literally hundreds of chemical compounds in cigarette smoke.

However, researchers believe that some of these chemicals can trigger hormonal imbalances, which cause irregular menstrual cycles or anovulation. Not only that, but these harmful chemicals can also cause genetic abnormalities in mature eggs. In the likelihood that a female smoker does get pregnant, she’s still at risk of an early pregnancy loss if the chemicals from the smoke stay in her body.

The bad news is that female non-smokers are not necessarily in the clear. It turns out that passive smoking, or inhaling secondhand smoke, also increases the likelihood of infertility or pregnancy loss. It doesn’t matter who’s lighting up the cigarette; as long as you’re inhaling the harmful chemicals in tobacco smoke, your fertility is in danger.

So if your partner is a smoker, ask him to step away from you whenever he needs his nicotine fix. Better yet, get him to start quitting altogether. Studies show that smoking can also contribute to male impotence by impairing sperm function and lowering sperm count.

Use foreplay to heat things up

A common problem experienced by couples trying to conceive is a lack of excitement in their sex lives. It’s completely understandable – what with the stress of work, the pressure of a ticking biological clock, and the lack of spontaneity, sex just isn’t as exciting as it used to be back when you were still dating. Instead of getting straight to the point of intercourse, spend a little more time doing foreplay.

Believe it or not, foreplay can increase your fertility in two ways. The most obvious way is that it will help you feel more relaxed. By now you probably know how much stress can lower your chances of conceiving because stress hormones upset the balance of sex hormones.

Extended foreplay also encourages natural vaginal lubrication. Stress and fertility drugs tend to cause vaginal dryness, and most couples trying to conceive make the mistake of using commercial lubricants to solve this problem. Leading lubricant brands act as spermicide, even if they are water-based and contain no spermicidal chemicals, because their pH levels are too acidic. Sperm need an alkaline environment in order to survive.

Although semen provides this sperm-friendly environment, the pH balance gets disrupted when a commercial lubricant is introduced. Lubricants also contain certain ingredients that affect sperm motility, or their ability to swim. Although a lubricant called Pre-Seed can provide the right environment for sperm to survive, it’s probably best to lubricate the vagina naturally with a little foreplay.

Sex positions can enhance conception

When trying to get pregnant, it makes sense to use a position that makes the journey as short as possible for the sperm. The missionary position, or the man on top, is one of the best positions for conception because it provides deep penetration and deposits the sperm right outside the opening of the uterus. Another excellent position is doggie style, or rear entry, with the woman on all fours or lying down on her belly. This also brings the sperm right in front of the cervix and is especially useful for women with an inverted uterus.

And yes, MRIs actually confirm that these two positions do place the sperm closest to the egg! Positions to avoid include woman on top, or any position where gravity can prevent sperm from reaching its destination in time.

Some experts also suggest lying on your back and bicycling for several minutes after intercourse to help the sperm swim along. There are no fancy imaging technologies to prove that this works but if anything, it should induce a couple of giggles. And what better way is there to make babies than to be silly and have fun?

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About Catherine: I am mom to three grown sons, two grandchildren and two rescue dogs. After years of raising my boys as a single mom, I remarried a wonderful man who had never had a child of his own. Unexpectedly, I found myself pregnant at 49!
Sadly we lost that precious baby at 8 weeks, and decided to try again. Five more losses, turned down for donor egg, foster care and adoption due to my age and losses - we have accepted that there will be no more babies in our house.

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