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Working together as a team in the coming months will definitely improve your chances of conceiving. It takes two to make a baby, after all. Good communication is key, of course – from understanding the ins and outs of your cycle, to you both being honest about your feelings. Here’s how to support each other on the road ahead:
You probably know when your period is due each month, but ovulation dates can be more tricky. In a typical 28-day cycle, the body produces an egg around day 14. Your most fertile times are two days before this and one day after.
Since the exact time of ovulation is rarely known, day 9 to day 15 are usually taken as the most fertile days. If you’re still not sure, you can simply type the first day of your last period into our fertility calendar and it will do the calculations for you.
Once you know your most fertile dates you can mark them in your schedule and plan date nights accordingly. Having unprotected sex is important throughout the month, but doing so during your most fertile time will definitely boost your chances of conception.
If you’re trying for a baby it’s important to eat a varied and balanced diet, and follow a healthy lifestyle in order to help prepare your body for pregnancy. It’s also recommended to take a prenatal supplement containing folic acid/folate starting at least one month before conception to help build up your body’s folate levels.*
And you’re not the only one who should be eating sensibly right now! What your partner eats, as well as his lifestyle will affect the quality of his sperm, too – so aim to follow a healthy lifestyle, follow a balanced diet and avoid processed foods together in favour of plenty of complex carbohydrates (wholegrain foods, whole meal bread, brown rice and pasta), protein (lean meat, poultry, fish and pulses), dairy products (such as milk and yoghurt) and plenty of fruit and vegetables.
If you often drink together as a couple then now’s the time to cut back. As well as depleting your body of important nutrients, alcohol has also been shown to affect the quality of sperm, so make your abstinence a joint effort.
Enjoying early nights together is a great way to help prepare you physically for conception – not to mention foster intimacy between you. Making a baby should be fun, so take the pressure off and just enjoy being affectionate.
If you’re trying to get pregnant, it’s natural to feel a little on edge every month. Be honest about your feelings and let your partner know that you’re feeling anxious, rather than snapping when he says something wrong. If this isn’t your lucky month, do something lovely together to take your mind off the disappointment. After all, supporting each other now is great practice for when you do eventually become parents.
* We can only give general advice, but as each pregnancy can vary individually, please contact your gynecologist in case of questions or doubts.
*Supplemental folic acid intake increases the maternal folate level. Low maternal folate levels is one of the risk factors in the development of neural tube defects in the developing fetus. Therefore it is recommended that women should take 400µg supplemental folic acid daily over a period of at least one month before and up to three months after conception. The association between low maternal folate status as an important risk factor for neural tube defects has been scientifically proven. Apart from this, other factors, (such as hereditary factors), can also increase the risk of neural tube defect.