Getting pregnant is a joyous and exciting time for many couples, but for some, it may take longer than expected. While there are many medical options available for couples struggling to conceive, there are also several natural ways to improve your chances of getting pregnant.
Here are some tips for getting pregnant naturally:
Track your ovulation
One of the most important things to know when trying to get pregnant is when you are ovulating. Ovulation is the release of an egg from the ovary into the fallopian tube, where it may be fertilized by sperm. The best time to conceive is during your fertile window, which is the time when you are most likely to get pregnant. To track your ovulation, you can use an ovulation predictor kit, track your basal body temperature, or monitor your cervical mucus.
Maintain a healthy weight
Being either overweight or underweight can affect your ability to get pregnant. Being overweight can cause hormonal imbalances, while being underweight can disrupt your menstrual cycle and make it more difficult to ovulate. Maintaining a healthy weight through a balanced diet and regular exercise can help improve your chances of getting pregnant.
Stress can have a negative impact on your fertility. Chronic stress can cause hormonal imbalances that affect ovulation and conception. Practicing relaxation techniques, such as yoga or meditation, can help reduce stress and improve your chances of getting pregnant.
Smoking can have a negative impact on both male and female fertility. In women, smoking can cause premature aging of the eggs and reduce their quality. In men, smoking can decrease sperm count and motility. Quitting smoking can improve your chances of getting pregnant and having a healthy pregnancy.
Limit alcohol and caffeine consumption
Alcohol and caffeine can have a negative impact on fertility. Drinking too much alcohol can reduce sperm count and motility in men, and increase the risk of miscarriage in women. Consuming large amounts of caffeine can also reduce fertility and increase the risk of miscarriage. Limiting your alcohol and caffeine consumption can improve your chances of getting pregnant.
Get enough sleep
Getting enough sleep is important for overall health, including fertility. Lack of sleep can cause hormonal imbalances that affect ovulation and conception. Aim to get at least 7-8 hours of sleep each night to improve your chances of getting pregnant.
Get regular exercise
Regular exercise can help improve fertility by reducing stress, maintaining a healthy weight, and regulating hormonal imbalances. Aim to get 30 minutes of moderate exercise, such as brisk walking, most days of the week to improve your chances of getting pregnant.
Eat a balanced diet
Eating a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables, lean protein, whole grains, and healthy fats can help improve fertility. Aim to eat a variety of nutrient-rich foods to provide your body with the vitamins and minerals it needs to support conception.
In conclusion – how you can increase chances to get pregnant naturally
In conclusion, getting pregnant naturally can be a challenging process, but by following these tips, you can increase your chances of success. Remember, every couple is different, and it may take time to get pregnant. If you have been trying to conceive for over a year, or if you have any concerns, it is important to talk to your healthcare provider. They can help you understand your options and provide the support and guidance you need to start a healthy family.
Are you looking forward to getting pregnant and may be pondering what ovulation tests are and how do I use ovulation tests when trying to get pregnant? Ovulation tests are a popular method of tracking your most fertile days, but they sometimes need clarification.
Learning to use ovulation tests is an integral part of increasing your chances of conception. With a bit of practice and learning, you will be an expert in no time.
Below are tips and illustrations that seek to explain how ovulation tests work. Also to note are insights on how to interpret and comprehend results. Moreover, we will provide tips that educate you on ways to use them most effectively when trying to get pregnant.
What Is An Ovulation Test?
If you have been trying to get a baby and haven’t succeeded yet, these tests can be a valuable tool. This is because they can assist you in pinpointing your most fertile days. By having intercourse on these days, you can potentially increase your chances of conceiving.
The tests are carried out to measure the amount of luteinizing hormone (LH) in your urine. The pituitary gland produces the Luteinizing hormone and helps to stimulate ovulation. When LH levels rise, ovulation will occur within 24-48 hours.
These tests are available in home test kit form and as strips that you can purchase at your local drug store. They are relatively affordable and straightforward to use. Follow the instructions that come with your chosen ovulation test.
You must use a urine strip test to collect your urine in a cup. Dip the strip in the urine and wait for the specified time in the instructions. After the time has elapsed, compare the strip to the color chart included with the kit. If the strip changes color, this indicates that LH is present, and ovulation will likely occur in the next 24-48 hours.
If you are using a digital ovulation test, the process is similar. Collect your urine in a clean cup and dip the test in the urine. Wait for the specified time in the instructions. The digital test will then display a message showing whether or not LH is present. If it is, ovulation will likely occur in the next 24-48 hours. Once you have determined that ovulation is imminent, you and your partner can start trying to conceive.
When Should I Start Using The Test?
If you are working towards getting pregnant, you may be wondering when to start using an ovulation test. The response to this question will depend on a few factors, including your cycle length and how regular your periods are. Generally, it’s best to start testing around the time you expect to ovulate. For most women, this is around day 14 of their cycle. However, if your cycles are longer or shorter than average, you may need to adjust the timing of your tests.
It’s also important to consider how often you’ll need to test. For most women, testing once per day is sufficient. However, if your cycles are irregular or you have other fertility issues, you may need to test more frequently. Ultimately, speaking with a fertility specialist is the most incredible way to determine how often you should test.
Types of Ovulation Tests
When trying to conceive, many women use ovulation tests to help predict when they are most fertile. There are a variety of different ovulation tests on the market, with each having its own merits and demerits. Here are the various types of ovulation tests:
If you’re trying to get pregnant, ovulation test sticks can be a great way to help you track your ovulation cycle and improve your odds of conceiving.
Ovulation test sticks work by detecting the presence of the luteinizing hormone (LH) in your urine. This hormone increases just before ovulation, so the test sticks can tell you when you’re about to ovulate
There are a few fundamental ways to use ovulation test sticks. Some women use them to track their cycles, while others use them in conjunction with fertility treatments. When used correctly, ovulation test sticks can be up to 99% accurate in predicting ovulation.
There are many different brands of ovulation test sticks on the market, so it’s crucial to do your research to find the appropriate one for you. But once you’ve found a brand you trust, using ovulation test sticks is simple: pee on the stick and wait for the results. Most sticks will give you a positive or negative result within a few minutes.
Strips are a quick and easy way to test for ovulation at home. Most test strips have clear instructions and can be used with little to no fuss. Ovulation test strips detect luteinizing hormone (LH) presence in your urine. This hormone is released once the egg is released from your ovary and triggers ovulation.
Wet the strip with urine to use an ovulation test strip and wait for the results. Most test strips will show a positive result within a few minutes. If the strip turns positive, you are ovulating and should have sex that day or the following day to maximize your chances of conceiving.
Ovulation test strips can be found at most drugstores and are relatively inexpensive. Using these strips can help you to better time intercourse around your ovulation period, which can improve your chances of conception.
3. Digital Ovulation Tests
Digital ovulation tests are a type of fertility monitor that uses sensors to track changes in a woman’s body temperature. The sensors are worn under the arm and take readings throughout the day. The data is then sent to a fertility app which can help predict when the woman is ovulating.
Digital ovulation tests have several pros over traditional ovulation tests. They are bona fide, cheaper, and more convenient to use. Consequently, digital ovulation tests can be used by women who have irregular periods or are taking certain medication types.
If you are trying to conceive, a digital ovulation test can be a helpful tool in your fertility journey.
How Do I Interpret The Results Of My Ovulation Test?
If you’re hoping to get pregnant, you’re probably wondering how to interpret your test results. While these tests can be accurate, you should keep a few things in mind when trying to determine if you’re ovulating. The tests identify the amount of luteinizing hormone (LH) in your urine. This hormone spikes just before ovulation, so the test can predict when you’re about to ovulate.
Most ovulation tests come with instructions on how to interpret the results. Holistically, you will take the ovulation test at the same time each day, starting on a particular day of your cycle. The test will have a control line and a test line.
If the test line is the same color or darker as the control line, you have a high LH level and are likely to ovulate within the next 12-24 hours. If the test line appears lighter in color than the control line, that means your LH level is low, and you’re not likely to ovulate soon. There are also digital ovulation tests that will give you a positive or negative result, depending on your LH level.
While ovulation tests can be accurate, a few circumstances can bring about errors in the results. If you take the test at a different time than usual, your LH level may be different than it would be at your regular testing time.
Certain medications, such as fertility drugs, can also affect the test results. Talk to your doctor if you’re unsure how your medicines might affect the test. If you experience irregular periods, you may have a more challenging time predicting ovulation.
How Accurate Are Ovulation Test Strips?
Just how accurate are ovulation test strips? Anyone who has tried to conceive will tell you that much waiting is involved. And often, the waiting feels like an eternity. All you want is a positive pregnancy test, but you’re left distraught invariably.
If you’re struggling to conceive, consider using ovulation test strips. But how accurate are they? Ovulation test strips detect the presence of the luteinizing hormone (LH) in your urine. This hormone is produced by the pituitary gland and helps to regulate ovulation. When your LH levels surge, it signals that ovulation is about to occur.
To use an ovulation test strip, urinate on the strip and wait for the results. If the strip changes color, your LH levels are high, and ovulation is likely to occur in the next 24-48 hours.
Ovulation test strips are generally very accurate. In fact, studies have shown that they can be up to 99% accurate in predicting LH surges. However, it’s essential to keep in mind that ovulation test strips only work if you use them correctly. This means using them at the same time each day and following the instructions carefully.
You need to use them correctly to get an accurate result.
Another thing to remember is that certain medications, such as clomiphene and menotropins, can affect ovulation test strips. If you’re taking any medicines for fertility, be sure to speak to your health professional to see if it will affect the results of your ovulation test strips.
How To Use Ovulation Tests In An Irregular Cycle
If you have an irregular cycle, you will be unsure when to ovulate. This can make it challenging to identify when to use an ovulation test. However, you can do a few integral things to increase your chances of success. First, it is poignant to understand how the ovulation process works. Hormones control the ovarian cycle. These hormones cause the ovaries to mature and release eggs.
Ovulation usually happens about 14 days before the start of your next menstrual period. However, this varies from woman to woman or from cycle to cycle. This is why it can be challenging to predict when ovulation will occur.
There are a few ways to increase your chances of painstaking your ovulation day. One way is to chart your basal body temperature (BBT). This is your temperature when you wake up in the morning before attending to other responsibilities. You will need to take your temperature every day for the next few months to get an accurate idea of when you ovulate.
Another way to predict ovulation is to pay attention to changes in your cervical mucus. This mucus changes in consistency and amount throughout your cycle. Just before ovulation, you may notice an increase in mucus. It will be thin, slippery, and clear. This is called fertile mucus.
Once you have been charting your BBT and cervical mucus for a couple of months, you will have a good idea of when you ovulate. You can then start using ovulation tests.
Are There Any Risks Associated With Using Ovulation Tests?
Ovulation tests are not just for those who are trying to conceive. In fact, any woman who wants to know her most fertile days can benefit from using one. However, as with any medical procedure or test, there are always some risks involved. So, what are the potential risks associated with using ovulation tests?
The most common risks associated with using ovulation tests are false positive and false negative results. A false positive result means the test says you are ovulating when you are not. This can be frustrating and confusing, especially if you are trying to conceive. A false negative figure means that the test says you are not ovulating when you are. This can also be frustrating and can lead to unnecessary stress and anxiety.
Another potential risk is that ovulation tests can be expensive. If you are not trying to conceive and you want to know your most fertile days, you may not want to spend the money on an ovulation test.
Finally, there is always the potential for human error. You must use the ovulation test correctly to get accurate results. This is why it is essential to follow the instructions carefully and to contact a healthcare professional if you have any questions.
Overall, the risks associated with using ovulation tests are relatively low. However, it is imperative to be well aware of them(ovulation tests) before you embark on using one. If you have any concerns or issues, be sure to speak to your healthcare provider.
Where Can I Get Ovulation Tests?
If you’re having trouble getting pregnant or if you have irregular periods, your doctor or physician may recommend that you take an ovulation test.
There are two types of ovulation tests: urine tests and blood tests. Urine tests are the most common and are available without a prescription. Blood tests are more expensive and are only done if you’re having trouble conceiving. If your doctor recommends an ovulation test, they will likely give you a prescription for one. Get in touch with us if you need one. However, you may be able to find ovulation tests at your local pharmacy or online.
When you are ready to take the test, you will need to collect a sample of your urine. The best time to do this is first thing in the morning before you’ve had anything to drink. You’ll then need to place the sample on the test strip and wait for the results.
If the test is positive, it means you’re about to ovulate. This is the best time to be intimate if you are trying to conceive. If the test is negative, then you are not about to ovulate. You may consider trying again in a few days or speak with your doctor about other fertility treatments.
Ovulation tests are simple, inexpensive, and easy to use, and they can be a great tool in your TTC (trying to conceive) arsenal. But like any tool, they work best when used correctly.
LH is produced by the pituitary gland and leads to ovulation. When levels of LH surge 48-72 hours prior to ovulation, it signals the release of an egg from your ovary. The egg only lives for 12-24 hours, making this a very brief window of opportunity for fertilization.
Ovulation tests typically come in the form of midstream tests that you can use at your own convenience at home. To use them, urinate on the absorbent end of the test strip or midstream cup and wait for the results. Most tests will show a positive result (indicating the presence of LH) within 5 minutes.
To increase your chances of getting pregnant, you’ll want to start testing for LH about five days before you expect to ovulate. Most women ovulate mid-cycle, around day 14 (counting Day 1 as the first day of your period). Keep in mind, if you have been diagnosed with PCOS or other forms of reproductive disorder your results may be inconclusive, so it is alway safer to seek an advice from a licensed medical doctor.
However, this can vary from one individual to another. Likewise, cycle to cycle- so it’s best to use ovulation tests to identify your own personal LH surge. Once you detect the LH surge, you’ll want to have intercourse within 24-36 hours. By understanding how ovulation tests work and how to interpret their results, you can increase the chance of getting a positive pregnancy test.
By Fertility Cloud Head Nurse Svetlana Izrailevsky, BSN, RN.
What is a menstrual cycle?
In reality, a menstrual cycle consists of 3 broad categories of cycles: Ovarian (follicular) cycle, Endometrial lining cycle, and Cervical mucus development cycle. It is important to understand that these cycles are taking place in tandem, and in relationship to each other. That means that what happens in one of these cycles will affect the developments in the other ones.
First, lets review the hormones involved in the menstrual cycle:
FSH – FSH helps control the menstrual cycle and stimulates the growth of eggs in the ovaries. FSH levels in women change throughout the menstrual cycle, with the highest levels happening just before an egg is released by the ovary. This is known as ovulation.
LH – LH helps control the menstrual cycle. It also triggers the release of an egg from the ovary. This is known as ovulation. LH levels quickly rise just before ovulation.
Estradiol, also called E2, is the main estrogen in nonpregnant females of childbearing age. It’s mostly made in the ovaries and is important for uterine lining development.
Progesterone is a hormone that’s made mainly by the ovaries. Each month, progesterone prepares your uterus for pregnancy. During a normal menstrual cycle, an ovary releases an egg and your progesterone levels begin to rise. Progesterone makes the lining of your uterus grow thicker so that a fertilized egg can attach (implant) inside of the uterus and grow into a baby. If you don’t become pregnant, your progesterone levels will fall. The lining of your uterus will become thinner again. When your uterus starts to get rid of the extra blood and tissue, your menstrual period will begin. If you become pregnant, progesterone levels will continue to rise to about 10 times higher than usual to support the pregnancy.
3 main time frames of the cycle:
The connection between different cycles
LET’S LOOK AT SOME COMMON QUESTIONS THAT COME UP:
What is the best time to get pregnant during my cycle? What should I be doing to maximize the potential for conceiving?
When we are speaking of a regular 28-30 day cycle, your fertility window is between cycle day 10-15. We would recommend intercourse every other day starting on cycle day 10. Once you note your LH surge by using ovulation predictor kits, you should have intercourse daily on the day of the LH peak/surge and the subsequent 2 days.
Please remember that LH hormone stays elevated for a very short time, just about 24 hours so we do not recommend that you keep checking your LH after you see the peak.
Male partners, if applicable, should do ejeculation every 2-3 days starting with your cycle day 1. We would like to have the freshest sperm sample available for insemination. Please do not hold off on regular ejaculation because that increases the number of dead and dying sperm in the sperm sample that will be produced for the insemination.
Wait! What if my cycles are not regular?
For some patients, the cycles are regular and predictable, but long. It is possible to have a regular ovulatory cycle with the overall length of 35 days, for example. However, there are also women who have irregular ovulatory cycles due to ovarian dysfunction. This dysfunction is usually related to improper hormone levels of Estradiol and FSH.
What does the follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) do again?
FSH – FSH helps control the menstrual cycle and stimulates the growth of eggs in the ovaries. FSH levels in women change throughout the menstrual cycle, with the highest levels happening just before an egg is released by the ovary. This is known as ovulation.
What about Estradiol?
Estradiol, also called E2, is the main estrogen in nonpregnant females of childbearing age. It’s mostly made in the ovaries and is important for uterine lining development. As you can see in the diagram above, Estradiol rises slowly before ovulation and stays elevated for a period of about 7 days after the ovulation. This is so that there is no ovarian follicular recruitment happening during the period of potential fertilization and implantation. Elevated levels of Estradiol can interfere with production of FSH so if the Estradiol levels are high at the beginning of the cycle it impacts the regular growth and development of the follicles.
Estradiol can be elevated as a result of conditions such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) or presence of elevated levels of BPA in the system. Bisphenol A (BPA) is a chemical produced in large quantities for use primarily in the production of polycarbonate plastics. It is a part in various products including shatterproof windows, eyewear, water bottles, and epoxy resins that coat some metal food cans, bottle tops, and water supply pipes. https://www.niehs.nih.gov/health/topics/agents/sya-bpa/index.cfm.
I ovulated 2 days past normal ovulation days, does that mean my period will start two days later than expected?
The next menstrual period will start once the Progesterone and Estradiol levels fall, if there is no conception. They typically occur 10-14 days after ovulation occurs. If you ovulate 2 days later than you usually do, your menses mostly likely will be 2 days late.
I have been taking Progesterone to support my uterine lining. Will that impact my menses?
Yes! If you are taking Progesterone, you are not likely to start menses even if you are not pregnant. Take a home pregnancy test, and if it is negative stop taking the Progesterone. You can expect your menses 2-5 days after stopping the medication. Some patients may begin spotting even before stopping Progesterone. The spotting/bleeding you will get after the Progesterone may be a little heavier than your usual menses and the first day of bleeding will count as cycle day 1 for next treatment.
It was my first time taking Clomid, is it normal that I expect menses to be delayed even with negative HPT?
Clomid does not directly impact the length of menses. However, it does help regulate the ovulatory process so your menstrual cycle will look different. For some patients, cycles are a bit shorter and for others they are longer as Clomid works to increase production of FSH hormone.
What does LH hormone timing look like in the cycle?
LH rises slowly only a few days before ovulation and then has a sharp rise known as LH peak or surge, 24-36 hours before ovulation. It only stays elevated for about 24 hours and then drops sharply. It does not begin to rise again with the start of the menses, at least not right away.
We are always looking for ways to sneak eggs, nuts, seeds and other lovely protein sources into our sweet treats, to make sure they wont wreak havoc on blood sugars – That’s why we were so excited when we came across this ‘Paleo Banana Bread’ recipe, which has four eggs and almond butter for protein, along with no added sugar! This recipe has proved a hit among our naturopaths and admin team, and we’ve also had some great feedback on it from patients with whom we have shared the link. It also freezes well in individual slices, making it an easy one to pop in a lunchbox or to take to work.
A high protein, gluten free, healthy and delicious banana bread for you and your family to enjoy!
4 medium very ripe bananas, peeled about 525-575g once peeled
4 eggs ideally room temperature
1/2 cup almond butter (or 140g raw almonds, blended to form almond butter)
4 tbsp butter melted (note: according to some of our patients, coconut oil works well for a dairy-free option)
1-2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 cup coconut flour (~75g) Note: You cannot substitute desiccated coconut, as it won’t work unfortunately
1 tbsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
Pinch of sea salt
Preheat your oven to 175 degrees Celsius, fan-forced. Grease and line a regular loaf tin with baking paper.
Combine your bananas, eggs, almond butter, melted butter and vanilla in a food processor, Thermomix or high-powered blender, and blend until combined (if using a regular mixing bowl, simply mash the banana and stir well to combine with the other wet ingredients).
Sift in the coconut flour, cinnamon, baking soda, baking powder and salt, and stir to combine.
Pour into your prepared loaf pan, smooth flat and place in the oven to cook for 55-60 minutes, or until a skewer inserted comes out clean.
Remove from the oven, allow to stand for 5 minutes, then turn onto a cooling rack to cool.
Serve warm, toasted or as is. Enjoy!
To make the recipe dairy-free, some patients have reported success in replacing the butter with melted coconut oil.
To make the recipe nut-free, the original author suggests using a seed butter instead of the almond butter.
To freeze, simply allow the banana bread to cool entirely, then slice into pieces and freeze in a glass or stainless steel storage container. You might find it helpful to separate the individual slices with baking to prevent them sticking, if desired.
✅Quitting at least 3️⃣ months before trying for a baby is important to make sure the sperm is healthy when the baby is conceived.
Men and women who smoke take longer to get pregnant than non-smokers. Second-hand smoke is almost as damaging as smoking and women who are exposed to second-hand smoke take longer to conceive than women who are not. The chemicals in cigarettes can cause damage to eggs and sperm which affects a future child’s health.
❓Why❓ Because smoking affects every stage of the reproduction process – in both men and women.
🛑the DNA (genetic material) in eggs and sperm men’s and women’s hormone production 🛑the fertilised egg’s ability to reach the uterus 🛑the environment inside the uterus, where the baby grows. Research shows that smokers are more likely to experience infertility than non-smokers.
Men who have smoked marijuana at some point in their life had significantly higher concentrations of sperm when compared with men who have never smoked marijuana, according to new research led by Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. The study, conducted in the Fertility Clinic at Massachusetts General Hospital, also found that there was no significant difference in sperm concentrations between current and former marijuana smokers.
These unexpected findings highlight how little we know about the reproductive health effects of marijuana, and in fact of the health effects of marijuana in general.
📝Analysis of the semen samples showed that men who had smoked marijuana had average sperm concentrations of 62.7 million sperm per milliliter of ejaculate while men who had never smoked marijuana had average concentrations of 45.4 million sperm per milliliter of ejaculate. Only 5 percent of marijuana smokers had sperm concentrations below 15 million sperm per milliliter (the World Health Organization’s threshold for “normal” levels) compared with 12 percent of men who had never smoked marijuana.
❗️Unfortunately, science doesn’t always have the conclusive answers we crave — but given what the medical community does know, for the time being, choosing❌ not to smoke weed if you’re trying to get pregnant is the safest approach to avoid possible health effects on conception and the fetus down the line.