Trouble Getting Pregnant

trouble getting pregnantWhen you are trying to get pregnant you may encounter trouble conceiving. Problems conceiving can occur due to a variety of issues such as charting problems, frequency of sexual intercourse, birth control, and lifestyle habits.

When you are trying to get pregnant, most likely you have already learned about your cycle and have started charting it as well.  You may have discovered when you are ovulating by charting your cycle and taking your basal body temperature. However, even though you have been diligent in charting your cycle and determining ovulation there are still other reasons why you may be having trouble getting pregnant.

Why does this occur?

There are multiple reasons this may occur:

1. Human Error

One is human error. Sometimes charting, especially in the beginning may be a little difficult, and you may have made mistakes while charting your cycle. It’s a good idea to talk to your ob/gynecologist to see if you are charting and taking your temperature correctly.

It may also be helpful if you use a couple of methods to detect ovulation. Here are a few you should be using:

Charting your cycle – This involves being diligent in recording your menstrual cycle. There are many applications and websites available that can help you detect ovulation based on your cycle, but if you have an irregular cycle, you may want to use other methods as well. If you have a regular cycle, ovulation occurs two weeks prior to the start of your menstrual cycle. Although this is the typical ovulation period, it can vary from woman to woman.

Cervical mucus – You will want to take note of your cervical mucus. Before ovulation, cervical mucus feels slippery and is like raw egg white, these are your most fertile days.

Basal Body Temperature (BBT) – The basal body temperature is your body’s lowest temperature during a 24 hour period. If you want to chart your basal body temperature, you will need to be diligent for a couple of months in taking your temperature daily. The best time to take your temperature if after you wake in the morning, at the same time. Use a basal thermometer to take your temperature. You will want to use this type of thermometer because it shows the small degree changes that a regular thermometer can’t.

Your temperature will be one half degree to one degree higher after you ovulate, this is why it will be important to record your temperature for a couple of months, since you will have missed the fertile period after ovulation.

Ovulation Predictor Kits – Ovulation Predictor Kits have become popular at helping determine ovulation. An ovulation predictor kit can detect ovulation up to two days ahead of time. Make sure you choose an FDA approved ovulation predictor kit.

The best time to have sex in order to get pregnant is two to three days before ovulation, these will be your most fertile days. But pregnancy can occur as much as six days before ovulation, as sperm can survive five to six days in your body.

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2. Anovulatory Cycles

Another reason why you may not conceive despite charting and taking your temperature is because you may be having anovulatory cycles, (cycles where you are not ovulating) and you are unaware.

You may want to visit your ob/gyn to determine if you are experiencing anovulatory cycles especially if you have been trying for more than a year to get pregnant and have been unable to conceive. If you are 35 and older your ob/gyn should be visited if you have been trying to conceive for more than six months without success.

What are the causes of anovulatory cycles?

There are several reasons why a woman might have anovulatory cycles but an unhealthy weight, diet,  or overexercising are three reasons this may occur.

3. Timing

The optimal time to have sex when you are trying to conceive is two to three days before ovulation, so that there is a greater chance of conception. However it is good to have sexual intercourse frequently surrounding your fertile days, so you don’t miss any window of opportunity for conception. Sperm can survive in a woman’s body up to six days after sex, so it is beneficial to try to conceive up to a week before ovulation and even a couple of days after.

4. Weight Issues

Weight is another important factor besides times of ovulation and sexual intercourse frequency. This is because weight can play a role in regular cycles, menstrual regularity, as well as ovulation. If you have a BMI under 18.5 , and over 24.9, it can reduce your chances of conceiving. You want to make sure you are at a healthy weight when trying to conceive.

Both overweight and underweight women have the ability to conceive, but there is a greater opportunity for success when a woman is at a health Body Mass Index.

If you are overweight or underweight, you will want to make sure that you are losing or gaining weight in a healthy way. Destructive weight loss or gain can have negative effects on conceiving. If you are trying to lose weight, focus on eliminating processed foods from your diet and eating a whole foods, organic diet. If you are trying to gain weight, focus on adding high calorie healthy foods to your diet and eating at least three full meals daily. Eating highly processed or fatty foods to gain weight can cause more harm than good.

5. Birth Control

Birth control can effect how easy or difficult it is to become pregnant. If you are on birth control, you should stop taking it as soon as possible. The body sometimes needs a period of two weeks up to eighteen months for a regular cycle to occur again. This is usually dependent on the type of birth control and the duration of use. Some women get pregnant as soon as they discontinue birth control, some may take longer.

6. Lifestyle Choices

Poor lifestyle choices cause a  higher risk factor for not achieving pregnancy easily. This includes lifestyle habits, activities, and diet. A healthy Body Mass Index (BMI) does not automatically ensure that you will achieve pregnancy. Make sure you are eating foods that are closest to nature or organic. Avoiding processed foods will have a tremendous impact on your ability to conceive.

If you want to get pregnant, it is more important than ever that you eat healthy. Eating healthy makes your body more conducive to getting pregnant.

A woman should eat a diet that is rich in whole grains, legumes, leafy greens, fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein and calcium. This ensures that a you get all the necessary vitamins and minerals that will support your reproductive system for a healthy pregnancy. Eating a diet that is full of nutritionally void items such as white bread, white pasta, white rice, and white flour, and junk foods will prolong and minimalize the odds of getting pregnant.

It has also been found that taking a high quality prenatal or woman’s multivitamin and Omega 3s increase a woman’s chances of becoming pregnant as well.

Some lifestyle habits that can impede getting pregnant are smoking and use of alcohol. Smoking and alcohol use can make the body unhealthy, so that it is hard for pregnancy to occur. Smoking and alcohol is known to reduce the rate of conception and successful pregnancy by at least fifty percent.

7. Too Much of a Good Thing

Overexercising is also another lifestyle habit that can make conception difficult as it can cause a woman not to ovulate. You should implement a moderate exercise routine, which includes about 30 minutes of exercise daily, to help with conceiving.

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