Are you planning to get pregnant in 2022? Don’t take conception for granted. It’s best to prepare your body for pregnancy in every way you can.
Here are seven tips to increase your chances of getting pregnant in 2022.
Most women visit their OB/GYNs annually, answer a few cursory questions, and then have their pelvic exam. Every three to five years, you get your pap smear, and you may spend some time discussing birth control options or having a question, or two answered. Now, it’s time to go beyond that and schedule an appointment wholly dedicated to your goal.
Preconception appointments take a closer and more intimate look at your body and your reproductive system to make sure nothing was missed in the past.
- Have you skipped your period more often than you’ve let your GYN know?
- Do your periods seem more intense, heavier, or last longer than your peers’ periods?
- Have you had an abortion in the past?
- Have you ever been pregnant and/or miscarried?
The more accurate and transparent you are about your reproductive health (past and present), the better able your OB/GYN is at scheduling the proper diagnostic tests if necessary and creating a personalized pregnancy plan.
If you haven’t done so already, it’s time to get real familiar with your menstrual cycle so you can predict when you’re ovulating. We recommend using fertility app. Fertility app algorithms plot your cycle after a few months of tracking your symptoms, stats, and periods. They’re amazingly accurate at predicting when you’ll ovulate. Visit Medical News Today’s post, The Best Apps for Fertility, and then download the one that resonates with you.
When you’re “doing it right,” you’re having sex at least two or three times in the days leading up to ovulation as well as the day you ovulate. While eggs “live” for about 12 to 24 hours before being absorbed by the body, healthy sperm live for an average of three to five days. The more sperm there are before your egg emerges from the mature follicle, the higher its chances of fertilization.
We’re learning more every day about how intricately connected your reproductive system is with every other aspect of your physical self. For example, any issues affecting blood sugar levels and insulin production can negatively impact fertility. Underlying inflammation also affects the reproductive tract.
By switching to an anti-inflammatory diet, you focus on foods that nourish and support the body and eliminate foods and ingredients that trigger inflammation. Plus, eating right for pregnancy reduces inflammation in the body also helps to relieve the symptoms of PMS, endometriosis, and PCOS. It’s a win-win.
There is a direct correlation between weight and fertility – for women and men! That’s right. If you’re in a heterosexual relationship, get your partner on board if you need to lose (or gain!) a few pounds. Being underweight (typical for extreme athletes or those who struggle with eating disorders) or overweight equally challenges fertility. It affects ovulation as well as male fertility factors and sperm count.
Making weight management a priority, with the goal of achieving a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9, supports your fertility dreams. Read Fertility, Weight, and a Healthy Pregnancy to learn more about how weight affects fertility.
Studies are inconclusive around stress and infertility. While many studies said there was no correlation between stress and infertility, others have pointed out that women with higher stress hormone levels in their saliva take longer to get pregnant. Also, we know that stress leads to and/or exacerbates other health conditions that affect fertility, including inflammation and compromised immunity.
Finding healthy ways to manage your stress and take care of emotional health supports overall physical, mental, and emotional well-being, promoting fertility on all fronts.
Could you do with more sleep? Or better sleep? If so, make a resolution to establish healthy sleep habits and a balanced circadian rhythm. According to sleep.org:
…researchers have found that female rats experience an afternoon surge of ovulation-triggering hormones. When mice are subjected to disordered 24-hour sleep cycles, they experience reduced embryo implantation. Additionally, mice with a mutation in the gene that regulates circadian lengths and rhythms experience frequent embryo loss. Some evidence also suggests that disrupted sleep may negatively affect ovulation in people.
- Recommendations for healthy sleep habits include:
- Creating a soothing bedtime ritual
- Stop using screens (including phones or screen-based eReaders) for at least 30 minutes before going to bed
- Avoid ingesting stimulants (sugar, caffeine, alcohol) for the hour or two before sleep time
- Minimize light sources in your bedroom by using blackout shades/curtains and only use red light spectrum for nightlights
Have you tried to get pregnant for 12 consecutive months without conceiving? Schedule an appointment with Fertility Solutions. Fertility testing and accurate diagnosis are essential to creating a personalized fertility plan.