Pregnancy is always special for every couple whether it is the very first one of their marriage life or second or third. So if you are planning for conception then to ensure a positive and quickest possible result you must prepare yourself for a healthy and sure sort conception that you can easily do by following our tips on how to prepare for conception.
There are many important things that a woman or both the partners need to care for in order to ensure that the female partner could conceive safely and successfully. Whether your body is ready to conceive at present or not is very important to understand otherwise you will keep on waiting and will end up with misery.
After the age of 30, your probability of getting pregnant reduces subsequently, year by year. So if you are someone who has crossed your 30 and wants to conceive now without taking care of all vital aspects then it’s time to get alert. Also since how long you are trying to conceive matters too.
If you are trying for conception for more than a year’s time and still haven’t got any positive result then it’s time to consult with your doctor who will advise for infertility test for both the partners. Apart from this if you are ill or suffering from any special medical health condition then also your inner health can interfere with your positive conception chances.
Preconception health i.e. your health before pregnancy matters a lot. If you are healthy enough in all respect then your chances of getting pregnant within a very shortest possible duration will remain quite high. Also with good preconception health, your risk of developing pregnancy complications reduces to a very great extent which is important for healthy baby birth.
So what are the factors that can fulfill your good pre-conception health parameter, you will be able to find out by going through the below-mentioned points that are essential to follow for preparing your body for conception. If you want to conceive then start focusing on the below-mentioned points minimum three months before you actually start trying to conceive.
Top 12 Tips To Prepare for Conception
Table of Contents
Know Your Menstrual Cycles
As you want to conceive now so it is important to understand your menstrual cycle more precisely as your success rate depends on how better you know about your monthly cycle. Normally the monthly cycle begins when a woman sees very first the bright red blood flow. That means the beginning of blood flow not simply spotting and this ends on the date before the next cycle starts. This way one single cycle takes 21 to 35 days time to complete and in some cases even more than that.
In case a woman’s cycle varies in length in terms of few more days from the current month to the next month then this kind of cycle would be considered as irregular and common. It is very common to have irregular period cycles however; it doesn’t mean that there is something wrong.
The menstrual cycle would be considered problematic when the delay is not limited to a few days instead it is too late and this late pattern follows months by months. This call for a doctor visit to understand clearly why this is happening and you are not affected with any underlying concern responsible for your irregular cycle.
Have Sex More Frequently
Couples who are eagerly waiting for the good news often have a query that how often they should have sex in order to conceive successfully as early as it is possible. The answer to this query in a simple term is too often. Nowadays most of the couples who are trying their best to conceive spend most of their time in a calculation to accurately timing their sex based on the ovulation date etc. Though this approach is right theoretically however the recent study report says that window of fertility is very short that is the timing a male sperm fertilizes to woman’s egg by merging together
Usually, it is just 3 to 5 days progressing towards ovulation and the date of ovulation itself. Out of these days your highest possibility to conceive remains 1 to 2 days before the ovulation. The health specialists advice to have sex every other day, beginning of the week you ovulate or beginning after the end of the period.
However, while timing your intercourse especially in the high fertility days is a sensible decision but also accompanied by some drawbacks especially because every time your body does not remain aligned with clockwise regularity. Also in spite of a regular cycle chances remain for your ovulation occurrence at any point in time during the cycle.
So, to eliminate all these drawbacks and its interference with your luck to conceive successfully, health experts recommend having sex more often, at least two to three times a week. A man with normal sperm count can increase his possibility of successful fertilization by having sex on every other day or every day
Schedule Your Pre-Conception Checkup
A pre-conception checkup is one of the most essential works that you must do to increase your chances of a successful conception. This is important for both partners. So don’t think that only female partners need to visit the doctor for a checkup instead the male partner is equally responsible for conception so his checkup is vital too.
During your and your partner’s examination, the doctor will ask some important questions from both of you such as yours and your family’s health histories, your gynecological history, and past pregnancy details. All these points will be taken into account to plan your healthy pregnancy.
At your preconception checkup, the health care provider will check whether your immunizations are up to date or not. Your higher health risk at this particular time will be Rubella and Chickenpox. In case you are not immune to these two diseases, it is a must to get vaccinated a minimum three months before you start trying to conceive. Both of these vaccines are live one so they are not recommended to take during your pregnancy phase.
When to Stop Taking Pills to Get Pregnant
This is another most common query of couples who are planning to conceive that, how early they should stop taking the contraceptive pills so that it would not interrupt in their conception plan. The answer is that your chances of getting pregnant increase immediately after you stop taking them as its effects subside very quickly. As soon as the hormones existing in these pills get out of your body you are ready to conceive again.
However, it may take a few month’s time as well before you start ovulating normally again. Also some couples have a query that whether it will be safe to conceive immediately after you stop taking the pills or not. The answer is Yes, there is no risk involved even if you conceive immediately after going off the pills. Women who have done so in the past have given healthy baby birth just like the women who have waited a few months after getting off with the contraceptive pills consumption.
Manage Your Chronic Health Conditions
Women who are the patient of chronic health conditions including diabetes, thyroid, high blood pressure, lupus, epilepsy, and heart disease are required to manage these conditions properly before trying for the conception. Women who are the patient of diabetes can increase their chances of conception by managing their diabetes health to the normal level and this must be done before they get pregnant.
This measure comes under the pre-conception checkup list which is must to do step. During your pre-conception exam tests like evaluating blood pressure level, diabetes health condition etc evaluated. Women who have a past treatment history of mood disorders such as depression, anxiety, or other mental health conditions require special take care in this period so that even after conception they can live a healthy pregnancy journey and have a healthy and safe delivery experience.
Maintain Your Safety at Your Job Place As well
While trying for conception it is crucial that you maintain your health safety, not within the home place but also at your workplace as well where you spend most of your time. There are many job profiles that need to conduct in an environment where exposure to harmful chemicals or air remains or you need to stand on your feet for a prolonged period which is not healthy.
Apart from these if you persistently sit in the same position that can also impact your body health. Job-related stress is another issue that women have to face generally. However, it is ok in a limited amount but beyond the healthy level, it can impact your health negatively which is not good for your conception plan.
Just like women men should too take care of their on the job safety even though employers don’t think that it is important for a male partner but in reality it does. Women who do night shifts generally should ask their employer for getting the favor of day shift till the delivery otherwise working on the night shift in this period may impact your as well as your baby’s health. Both of you should talk with your employer regarding your concerns and for time being you can ask for especial benefits until you deliver a healthy child successfully.
Maintain a Healthy Body Weight
It is important to assess your weight to ensure whether you have a healthy body weight or not. Women who are too heavy or are below the healthy body weight limit aka underweight should first work on their body weight before actually planning for the conception.
In case you are overweight or obese then your chances of conceiving reduces to a great extent until and unless you manage to reduce your weight in a remarkable amount. For this, you can switch to a low-calorie diet with a target of having 1800 calories in a day while you are trying to conceive. Women who are obese contain the risk of cesarean section, oversize babies, high blood pressure, and gestational diabetes.
Likewise, women who are very thin they also have a risk of infertility due to their underweight health condition. Being underweight increases your risk of experiencing difficulty in the labor process, you may undergo preterm labor, get anemic, and may give birth to a low birth weight baby. So keep your first target to get a healthy weight that you can ensure by having more healthy foods such as fresh fruits, vegetables, pasta, whole-grain bread, chicken, and lean meat.
Also limit your intake of salty snacks, sweets, and foods with low-fat content. Be active in your everyday life or its better you start following a good exercise routine at least for 30 minutes, five days a week. With this kind of plan, you can easily manage to maintain your weight to a healthy level and can ensure a healthy conception.
Increase Your Vitamins and Veggies Intake
As you want to conceive so it is important that your body remains well nutrient-dense that you can only ensure by consuming more and more nutritional fresh foods such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Along with that make sure that you avoid fully the consumption of unhealthy foods.
Nutrients that are most essential for your body at present to increase your chances of conception include iron, calcium, and also multivitamin supplements as well. However, while having these foods make sure that you follow only recommended doses of Vitamin A i.e. up to 3000 mcg and 50 mcg of Vitamin D.
In your current health scenario, the most essential ingredient that should remain present in your multivitamin supplements include Folic acid. 400 Mcg of folic acid daily doses is recommended in order to reduce the risk of neural tube defects like spina bifida in the newborn baby. You should increase your doses up to 4 milligrams if you come in the category of increased risk group.
However the importance of nutrient-dense foods especially vitamin C, folic acid, and zinc is not limited to the expecting mother, it is equally important for would-be father as well. These nutrients increase your sperm quantity and quality which is vital for easy and healthy conception.
Limit Your Caffeine Intake
Excessive doses of caffeine can impact your fertility health and ability negatively. So limit your caffeine intake 300 mg or even less than that in a day. People who are habituated to drink several cups of coffee drink in a day face difficulty in conception compare to those who do not drink caffeine or drink it in a limited quantity.
Even the excessive intake of caffeine increases your risk of preterm delivery, miscarriage, and low birth weight baby. So if you are addicted to this drink then target to moderate its limit before trying for conception.
Quit Your Smoking Habit
It is very crucial that you incorporate a healthy lifestyle before you start taking steps for conception. This is because your unhealthy life routine will directly impact your growing baby’s health. In the series of incorporating a healthy lifestyle routine kicking your smoking habit should come in the first priority list.
This maximizes your chances to conceive and to give birth to a healthy baby. As per the health specialists, women who smoke especially the chain smokers are less fertile than the women who do not smoke at all. Moreover, smoking increases your risk of stillbirth, miscarriage, preterm delivery, and low birth weight baby.
In this regard, it is vital to understand that quitting the smoking habit is not only vital for a woman but it is equally important for her male partner as well, because the participation of both the couples ensures a successful conception.
So if a male partner is indulged in an unhealthy lifestyle such as smoking then they should quit it too, as soon as it is possible. Also, a recent study says that for a fetus there is no difference between whether a mother smokes or she is exposed to secondhand smoking.
Stop Drinking Alcohol Completely
As of date, there is no specific level of alcohol doses that is determined for women during their pregnancy phase. So for the better health protection of the fetus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that a woman should stop drinking alcohol completely while they are trying to conceive.
If this recommended advice is not followed strictly while trying to conceive or during pregnancy then your risk of miscarriage, stillbirth, low birth weight baby, and even in certain cases severe birth defects increases a lot.
Alcohol consumption is not only harmful to the female partner but it is equally harmful to the male partner as well, as it reduces their sperm counts and quality. The usage of marijuana reduces sperm density as well as motility. Also, it increases the count of abnormal sperm in men which again impacts their fertility chances.
How can you expect to live healthily and your fetus to grow healthily when all the time you remain full of stress? Persistent stress increases a woman’s risk of complications such as miscarriage etc during pregnancy. So it is crucial for you to manage your stress first by giving it the first priority before you start trying for conception.
There are lots of things that you can try in order to manage and reduce your stress and to keep your mind and body in a healthy position. Things that can help you in this context include healthy food intake, exercising every day, get involved in outdoor games or spend some time in nature, and most important get plenty of sleep during nights.
Consult with your healthcare provider if your stress level is too high. They can recommend you to take counseling help who can understand your mind better and help you in reducing and handling your stress effectively. Make sure you do not get a victim of abuse either from your partner side or from any other abusive family member as this can badly impact yours as well as your fetus’s health.
Stages of Medical Check-Up
- First of all, visit an internist. Not only reproductive system, but your whole body must be healthy for your future child. You should have your blood and urine tested, have your blood group and Rh-factor defined, make fluorography. During your visit to a doctor, don’t forget to mention all drugs that you take regularly (very often they may be contra-indicated during pregnancy). If you have some chronic disorders, or some disorders were discovered by the doctor, visit a specialist.
- Next stage is a gynecologist check up. He/she will test the general state of reproductive system and presence of latent urogenital infections, such as clamydia, toxoplasma, trichomonad, herpes virus, and cytomegalovirus. These diseases can often progress without symptoms and can be detected only by tests.
- Visit a dentist and have your oral cavity thoroughly examined. During pregnancy your body must be free from all focuses of infections.
- If you are over 35, planning pregnancy should include the consultation of geneticist. This advice is essential for those parents who have at least one cause of hereditary diseases in their families.
- If you didn’t have German measles in childhood, get vaccinated. This virus leads to miscarriage in 10-40% of cases, in 20% it causes stillbirth, and up to 25% of babies infected prenatally die during the first year of life. Vaccine is effective on 95% and is totally safe. However, you should get vaccinated 3 months before conception. You can also get vaccinated against virus B hepatitis – quite often delivery may be accompanied by blood loss with consequent blood transfusion.
Geneticist Consultation Before and During Pregnancy
Genetics is based on studying the mechanisms of hereditary diseases, considering genetic factors of any kinds of pathologies and developing methods of diagnosing and prevention. Congenital malformations can be not only hereditary, they can appear in utero. Very often fetus mutations happen because of electromagnetic radiation, chemicals, some medicines, or viral diseases (flu, German measles).
There are several reasons for geneticist consultation:
- Individual wish of a couple during the period of conception planning. Geneticist can predict baby’s condition and probability of hereditary or non-hereditary disease appearance. A specialist will study genealogy of a couple, define a risk group, advise a number of tests and check-ups to prevent genetic pathology. If a couple has relatives with hereditary diseases, or future mother had miscarriage in the past, consultation of geneticist is essential.
- Pregnant woman or members of her family had/have hereditary diseases.
- One child in the family already has/had malformations or chromosomal abnormality.
- Pregnant woman is over 35.
- Pregnant woman takes some medicines, alcohol, or drugs to the 3rd month of pregnancy.
- The results of ultrasound and biochemical tests. For instance, when ultrasound has detected some physical abnormalities, or biochemical test showed abnormal level of protein, chorionic gonadotropin, alpha-fetoprotein, and chorionic gonadotropin.
- A woman has endocrine problems or had viral diseases during pregnancy. The most dangerous infections for pregnant women are German measles, herpes, cytomegalovirus, toxoplasmosis.
Consultation of geneticist is important for a future father as well.
Some genetic investigations should be taken before conception, others are carried during pregnancy. Geneticist will study couple’s genealogy, ask about relatives age, diseases, health condition, causes and age of death. As a rule, he/she will start from maternal grandparents. A specialist will take into account all infertile marriages, cases of miscarriages and abortions.
During pregnancy the main methods of abnormalities detection are ultrasound and biochemical check-ups. These manipulations are called non-invasive methods.
Invasive methods presuppose medical invasion into uterine cavity: this way specialists take the material for observation and tests. To such methods belong chorion biopsy, amniocentesis, placentocentesis. Intake of cells is conducted from placenta, fetal fluid, blood from umbilical cord. Invasive methods are more dangerous, they are used only in case of strict medical indications.
It may sound strange, but prevention of genetic diseases is possible. Of course, future parents must think of that BEFORE conception. A couple should take vitamins, give up smoking and drinking alcohol, minimize the contact with harmful substances. Those who had hereditary pathologies in their families should undergo a DNA-check up.
Future parents must pay special attention to products and vitamins with folic acid, ascorbic acid, tocopherol, group B vitamins. And remember that following doctor’s recommendations, timely check-ups and tests, proper diet will minimize the risk of genetic diseases.
The above-mentioned tips on how to prepare for conception are absolutely safe and proven one. Simply follow them persistently and stay ready to enjoy your good news soon.
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