Causes Of Male Infertility
Male infertility is a factor for about 8 percent of couples who are trying to conceive.
Causes of male infertility include:
- enlarged veins on the testicles, called varicocele
- abnormally shaped sperm
- injury to the testes that reduces sperm production
- heavy drinking, smoking, or drug use
- chemotherapy or radiation to treat cancer
- problems with the glands that produce the hormones needed to make sperm
- more rarely, genetic disorders such as Klinefelter syndrome
Stop Using Birth Control Before You Start Trying To Conceive
No kidding, you say. While it may seem intuitive, not all birth control methods affect your body in the same way. Some will stay in your system for weeks or even months after you stop taking them. When youre hoping to get pregnant fast, check in with your OB/GYN to learn more about any potentially lasting effects from your method of birth control.
Have Sex Every Other Day During The Fertile Window
The “fertile window” spans a six-day interval the five days prior to ovulation and the day of it, according to the American Society for Reproductive Medicine. Every month, a woman is most fertile on these days.
Many women are turning to new technology tools, such as fertility-tracking apps and websites, to help them keep tabs on when they may be more likely to conceive, but a 2020 review in the journal BMJ Sexual & Reproductive Health suggests that there is limited independent research on their accuracy. In a study published in 2016 in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology, scientists analyzed 50 popular fertility-tracking websites and apps with a hypothetical woman, and found that the results varied wildly, with many mistakenly tagging days outside of the fertility window, Live Science reported.
When a woman has identified that fertility window, should they have sex every day? Research has shown that there hasn’t been a big difference in pregnancy rates between couples who had sex every day during the “fertile window” compared with couples who did it every other day , Pavone said. “And having sex every other day might be easier for a couple to pull off,” she added.
- Glow Ovulation, Period Tracker
- Fertility Friend FF App
- Clue: Health & Period Tracker
But she said there are some water-based vaginal lubricants that can decrease the movement of sperm, so Pavone recommended using Pre-Seed rather than Astroglide or K-Y Jelly when lubrication is needed.
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Wacky Ways To Get Pregnant Faster
If you’re trying to get pregnant, we know you’re likely up to try just about anything that may help. But before you test any of these trending fertility-boosting tales , see what experts have to say.
Are you and your partner ready to hop on the “TTC” bandwagon? If so, there’s a good chance you’ve already heard some of the crazy old wives tales about different “tried and true” tricks to get pregnant faster. From common sense notions, like laying down with your legs up to the truly bizarre, like tossing your underwear on the roof couples around the world have come up with some pretty wild things that they swear helped sperm and egg meet up and make that delicate journey.
We discussed a few of the wackiest methods for getting pregnant we’ve heard lately with Renee Wellenstein, M.D., a double board-certified physician in Obstetrics & Gynecology and Functional Medicine to get her professional opinion. Why? Because we figure if we’re talking about them, you probably are, too.
Get the scoop on whether these off-the-wall methods could possibly work. And who knowsmaybe one of the doctor-approved tricks on our list will be the thing that ends up doing the trick. As for the others? Well, at least they’re good for a laugh.
What Positions Are Best
With hundreds of millions of sperm released in each male orgasm, any unprotected sex around the time of ovulation could result in a pregnancy. As long as sperm enter the vagina, you have a chance to conceive.
No certain positions during sex have been proven to increase likelihood of conception. Yet certain positions may be better than others for ensuring those little swimmers find their way up to the egg. The missionary and doggie-style positions allow for deeper penetration bringing sperm in closer proximity to the cervix.
In the standing and woman-on-top positions, gravity works against you. Yet standing up right after sex shouldnt reduce your odds of a pregnancy. Sperm are pretty good swimmers. Once deposited in the vagina, they can reach the cervix within 15 minutes.
Though you dont need to raise your legs in the air after sex, or even lie flat on your back to help them get there, it cant hurt. Placing a pillow under your lower back will also keep the sperm swimming in the right direction.
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Increasing Your Chance Of Falling Pregnant
There are 2 ways you can increase your chances of falling pregnant:
- Calculate when you will ovulate and have unprotected sex 1 or 2 days before that date.
- Make sure both you and your partner improve your health, diet and lifestyle.
An egg can be fertilised for about 12-24 hours after it’s released. You’re most likely to get pregnant if you have sex within a day or so of ovulation.
Try not to get too stressed about falling pregnant. Having unprotected sex every couple of days around the time of ovulation is the best way to make sure there is always a good supply of sperm to fertilise the egg when it’s released.
Many factors can affect your chances of falling pregnant. These include your age and your partner’s age, your lifestyle, your weight, whether either of you has a chronic illness, and how often you have sex.
If you are under 35 and you are not pregnant after a year of having unprotected sex, see your doctor. If you are over 35, it is a good idea to seek help sooner.
Using An Ovulation Test
If you get your period on the same day every month , you can use an over-the-counter ovulation kit, which works by detecting the hormone LH in your urine. As LH levels spike, or surge, you are about to ovulate. To predict ovulation, count 17-18 days backwards from when you would get a period in your shortest cycles. Then use an ovulation kit to test your LH levels beginning on that day. For example, if you usually have a 30-day cycle, start testing day 12 or 13, and test once a day, around the same time, until your kit shows a positive. A good rule of thumb is to purchase the most affordable kit with the least bells and whistlesno need to overcomplicate the process.
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Finding The Best Time To Get Pregnant
If you want to get pregnant and you have regular periods, the best time to have sex is the day before you ovulate. You also have a good chance of conceiving in the five days leading up to as well as on the actual day of ovulation. Basically, the more often you have sex during this window, the better. Frequent intercourse means increased sperm and, since sperm quality has a short shelf life, its good to strike when its fresh.
Many people use a variety of fertility methods and products to track changes to their basal body temperature and cervical mucus however, turning your journey into a complicated project wont necessarily help you get pregnant any more quickly. In fact, it could create obsessive behavior and be hard on your relationship with your partner. If youve already been tracking and collecting all of this data, your doctor will certainly take it into consideration. But if youre healthy and have regular periods, the most effective way to get pregnant is to simply stop using contraception .
Causes Of Female Infertility
Female infertility is a factor for about one-third of couples who are trying to conceive.
The most common cause is a problem with ovulation. If you dont ovulate, you wont release an egg to be fertilized.
Ovulation problems can be caused by:
- surgery for an ectopic pregnancy
A problem with the uterus can also make it harder to get pregnant. This may be due to an abnormal structure, or due to growths like fibroids.
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Increasing Your Sperm Count
Tip: In addition to cutting out unhealthy snacks like chips and sweets, especially avoid processed meats like bacon. Processed meats may lower your sperm count more than other unhealthy foods.
Ovulation And The Best Time To Have Sex
A woman is more likely to get pregnant if she has sex around the time of ovulation. Ovulation is when the ovary releases an egg which can be fertilised. This usually occurs 12 to 16 days before a woman’s next period.
It can be difficult to know exactly when a woman is ovulating. Sperm can live for up to 7 days in a womans body. Even if you have sex days before ovulation you could still become pregnant.
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Know When To Seek Help
Both the woman and the man should consider having an infertility evaluation if the woman is 35 or older and has not become pregnant after six months of having sex regularly without using birth control, Pavone said.
Pavone also recommended that a woman who is under 35 and her partner should consult a fertility specialist if she hasn’t become pregnant after one year of having unprotected intercourse on a regular basis.
Getting The Timing Right
The best way to increase your odds of getting pregnant quickly is to make sure that youre having sex at the right time in your cycle.
If you have regular cycles, you will ovulate around two weeks before your period. This means your fertile window will be the seven days before your expected ovulation.
If you have irregular cycles, it can be a little more difficult to predict when you will ovulate and when your fertile window will be.
There are a number of techniques that you can use to more precisely pinpoint your ovulation and fertile window.
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Getting Pregnant When Youre Under 35
- Assuming no medical issues affect their fertility, younger women typically find it easier to get pregnant. In fact, the peak age to get pregnant is between the late teens and late 20s.
- Getting pregnant earlier means youll probably have plenty of energy to care for a baby and keep up with an always-on-the-go toddler.
- The odds of miscarriage, preterm birth, birth defects, genetic abnormalities and pregnancy complications like high blood pressure and gestational diabetes are all lower among women under 35.
- Having a baby while youre younger means that your parents will be younger too.
- Younger parents may not be as financially stable as those who are older. And a family may require a dual income so you may have to work at least part-time, even if you’d prefer to stay at home.
- The relationship of young couples might not be as stable, and adding a pregnancy and baby to the equation can cause additional strain.
- Starting a family earlier can make keeping up relationships with non-parent friends more challenging.
Women under 35 should see a specialist if they’re unsuccessful at getting pregnant after 12 months of trying.
How Often Should You Have Sex
You might have read that having sex too often reduces sperm quality and quantity. Some research has shown that sperm have better quality when collected after a 2-3 day period of abstinence. Studies have also shown that higher rates of conception are seen in couples who have sex every 1-2 days.
Making love once a day or every other day during your fertile window will increase your odds of getting pregnant.
Try to have sex more often, but dont force yourself into a schedule. It could lead to unnecessary stress. Ultimately, the ideal number of times to have sex is what feels comfortable to you.
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How Is Infertility Defined
Infertility is defined as the inability to become pregnant after one year of unprotected sex for women under 35 and six months for women 35 and older.
The vast majority of people will become pregnant within the first 12 months of trying to conceive with regular unprotected intercourse, says Cross. After six months to a year of trying depending on a womans age we recommend that a couple comes in for an infertility evaluation. At that point, its more likely that theres a problem preventing pregnancy.
Day : Start A Multivitamin
Pregnancy is taxing on the bodys nutritional stores. Give yourself a boost by taking a multivitamin to bridge any gaps. Better yet, prenatal vitamins are specifically formulated to give your body what it needs during pregnancy.
Starting a prenatal now will help you avoid any nutritional deficiencies during early pregnancy. Youll also have time to try out a few brands to see what works for your body.
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While Youre At It You Dont Need To Give Up Drinks And Foods Stored In Bpa
BPA is an industrial chemical often found in plastic food containers and metal water bottles and has attracted a lot of attention in recent years over its potential impact on fetal development and children.
Because of its ubiquity, its generally very difficult to avoid BPA products altogether, Williams said. Various studies on both female and male fertility yield conflicting results with regards to BPA’s effects. While it’s not wrong to try to avoid these products, given the conflicting data, I wouldnt lose sleep over it.
Thats kind of the general theme, actually. Unless youre concerned about medical issues with your body or menstrual cycle, theres no need to lose sleep during the first 12 months that youre trying to get pregnant. Give it time.
Maintain A Good Weight
Latest research published confirms that maintaining a healthy weight BEFORE you conceive:
‘impacts on the chances of conceiving naturally, having a good pregnancy and delivery, as well as affecting the health of children in their later life.’
According to RCOG, 25% of women are obese and one in four pregnant women is overweight or obese.
NHS guidelines advise that a BMI of over 30 or under 19 can affect fertility, with the safest range being between 20 and 25.
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Stay In Bed Right After Intercourse
You have probably heard this one — lie in bed with your feet in the air after having sex to increase your chances of getting pregnant. The verdict? Not true.
“It’s good advice to lay in bed for 10 to 15 minutes after intercourse, but you don’t need your feet in the air,” Goldfarb says. “Your pelvis does not move when you put your legs in the air.” Don’t go the bathroom during this time either, he says. “If you wait 10 to 15 minutes, the sperm that is going to get into the cervix will be in the cervix.”
Get In Sync With Your Menstrual Cycle
If you want to know how to conceive fast, know when you ovulate. This may seem like a no-brainer but predicting your ovulation can take much of the guesswork out of conceiving. If you plot your cycle, youll be able to plan sex around your most fertile days. And to be certain that youre ovulating, use our ovulation calculator or take an ovulation test.
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How To Get Pregnant If You Have Endometriosis
Endometriosis is another common reproductive condition, affecting more than one in 10 women in the United States. It occurs when tissue found in the uterus grows in other parts of the body, such as the ovaries or fallopian tubes.
Even mild endometriosis can reduce fertility, while severe endometriosis can distort a woman’s pelvic anatomy and, for example, block her fallopian tubes, according to a 2015 study in The Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology of India.
It is still possible for a woman with endometriosis to become pregnant, and, once pregnant, the pregnancy is expected to be no different to that of a woman without endometriosis. Medical treatment through drugs does not improve fertility, according to Endometriosis UK, an endometriosis-focused charity. These medications involve regulating a person’s hormones, and can slow the growth of endometrial tissue and prevent new pieces from developing, said the Mayo Clinic. But because these drugs are based on hormones , they actively stop a woman from getting pregnant.