7 Ways to Increase Conception Success
There are two “F” words that come to mind when I think about my journey to getting pregnant. Fun and frustration! What were you thinking?! Fun, because there is so much to look forward to, and so much excitement thinking that this is actually going to happen. Frustration, because with each month you get a negative test result you have to wait an entire month to start trying again. It can wear on you as time goes on. Every month I received a negative result I would do more and more research, and try more and more things. So, now I’m going to share what I learned with you by giving you these tips that I feel helped the most.
- Start talking to your OB/Gyn BEFORE trying to get pregnant
- Track your ovulation
- Monitor your cervical mucous (YES!)
- Get yourself some Pre–Seed
- Have intercourse daily starting two days before you ovulate, and up to two days past ovulation
- Use essential oils
- See an acupuncturist
When you and your partner are on the same page to start trying to have a baby it is important to make an appointment with your OB to get everything checked out. If you have an underlying medical condition that could impede your chances of conceiving it is better to learn how to work around it ahead of time. Your OB will instruct you to start taking a prenatal vitamin, and how to make your body as healthy as can be to prepare for growing a human. If you don’t like taking pills like me, you can try Chewable Prenatal Vitamins, and if you’re a master pill taker these Rainbow Light Vitamins are great!
Tracking your ovulation every day can be a daunting task, and quickly take the fun out of trying, BUT it is effective to know when you’re ovulating. It took me a month or two to really understand what my symptoms were during ovulation. You can buy ovulation test kits, but my method is free! I created a monthly calendar that I kept next to my bed along with a thermometer. On the calendar I tracked my menstrual cycle, intercourse occurrences, and body temperature. You will notice a slight increase in your body temperature when you are ovulating, so you will want to take your temperature when you first wake up before moving out of bed. Depending on your cycle length you and your doctor will be able to pinpoint when you should be ovulating. For a typical woman with regular periods, she will ovulate two weeks, or 14 days, before starting her menstrual cycle. You can see why this may take some time to really learn how your body works every month. This is certainly something I NEVER knew about before I started trying to get pregnant.
Now for cervical mucous tracking. You may or may not be comfortable doing this, but I will tell you that once your are pregnant you will be dealing with a LOT of gross things you would prefer not to! Once you start noticing these changes in your body, you will pay attention to it all the time. Again, not something I ever gave one thought about before I was trying to conceive! As women, we all have a consistent vaginal discharge that varies in consistency and amount. When your body is ovulating this discharge (aka cervical mucous) changes to an egg white consistency. It is more clear and thin, but stretchy. The true test is if you gather a bit of this mucous on your thumb and forefinger to see if it stretches as the thumb and finger are pulled apart. You can check out this picture if you’re really curious and need visual guidance. Don’t let this gross you out too much, because this mucous is what will carry the sperm to your egg….hooray!
During ovulation you are most likely not in need of lubricant due to the increase in mucous, however, this handy dandy lubricant called Pre-Seed can act as an additional carrier for sperm. Again, when you’re trying to get pregnant, you will do all things necessary to make it happen. There is a silly quote in my work break room explaining why men never ask for directions, and it relates to the sperm not having a clue how to find the egg when the egg is relative to the size of Wisconsin compared to the tiny sperm. Pretty funny, so, needless to say, sometimes the little guys need some help to swim in the right direction quickly.
Now for the fun part. When you’re trying to conceive try to keep the fun in it as much as possible. Men can get very nervous when they know that this is the real deal, and it is up to them to perform. When you’re tracking ovulation it is hard to be spontaneous, but you can keep the tracking to yourself if your partner doesn’t want to know about it. Sperm have an average life of 3-5 days, so even if your tracking is off and you ovulate late, you still have a chance of conception. This is why I say to start having intercourse two or so days prior to your expected ovulation date, and up to two days after you believe you have ovulated based on your tracking methods.
I’m not a big fan of medications, so I tend to go towards essential oils as much as possible. I have had very good experiences with them personally, but I totally get it if that’s not your thing. There are, however, some essential oils that can help with fertility. Trying to conceive can be very stressful. Especially if you have been trying for a while. There are always those people that say “just relax, and it will happen”…you know, the ones you want to punch in the face. Well, it isn’t completely untrue. You do need to keep stress at bay, and Lavender oil can help. Lavender is one of those oils that can help with a TON of situations, and is always good to have on hand, so you definitely get your monies worth. Whisper is an oil that is said to be aphrodisiac-like when applied to wrists and to the back of the neck. Clary Sage is another oil that can be used by applying it to your abdomen. Discontinue use of this oil once you believe you may be pregnant.
Last, but not least, is to secure the help of an acupuncturist. Not only can acupuncture help calm you, many acupuncturists are trained in fertility care. Make sure you read reviews to find a reputable one. They will begin with a full assessment of your medical and physical history before they can start with treatment, since each treatment is specific to your needs. If you are afraid of needles, don’t let this hinder you if you really want to try it. Even as a nurse I’m not a big fan of getting an IV, but the needles used in acupuncture are super tiny, and will make you feel better in the long run. There may be a quick sting in certain areas, but this goes away very quickly, and then you just sit back and relax.
Congratulations on your journey to pregnancy. I wish you the best of luck on getting pregnant the fun and fast way!
If you would like a copy of my ovulation tracking calendar, please submit the form below and it will be delivered to your inbox! Just type “OVULATION” in the comment section:
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Please seek the assistance of your physician or pediatrician before making dramatic changes in your lifestyle. Even though I am an RN and Lactation Consultant many of my ideas come from personal experience in my work, and trial and error with my own little ones.
Welcome! I’m Brittany. I’m a mom of two toddlers living in Northwest Ohio with my husband, Chris, and our two cats, Simon and Oliver. I’m a labor and delivery nurse, and an Internationally Board Certified Lactation Consultant. I love finding new ways that make parenting easier, while providing a fun learning atmosphere for my girls at the same time. In my blog you will find tips and tricks for dealing with pregnancy, labor, and parenthood. My favorite part about being a nurse (besides getting to welcome little miracles into the world, obviously) is being able to educate new Moms (and Dads) on how to care for their little ones at the very start. Parenthood is such a complex and exhausting journey that we need to have support from others who make us feel like we’re not alone. You are not alone here!