Heavily pregnant woman stroking her stomach
(C) Love Matters | Rita Lino

What to expect

How can you increase your chances of getting pregnant? Here are some top tips for both men and women.
Have lots of sex!

It might seem obvious, but you’re not actually going to get pregnant without having intercourse. And if you want to have the best chance, you should do it two or three times a week.

Because you’re most likely to get pregnant if you have sex around the time you ovulate, you might want to work out what time of the month this happens, so you can make sure you have sex then. See ‘How can I work out when I’m going to ovulate?’ in the period FAQs.

Don’t smoke

This goes for both men and women! Smoking makes men produce fewer healthy sperm. And in women, it affects the hormones that make eggs mature properly. If you do get pregnant, it’s really important to stop smoking anyway, as it’s very bad for the unborn baby.

Don’t drink

This also goes for both men and women! Alcohol affects the hormones in your body. It makes men produce less testosterone, which means less sperm. And it makes women produce more oestrogen, which causes menstrual problems and reduces fertility.

For men, it’s been found that if you have more than a couple of small drinks a day it can affect your sperm. The best thing, of course, is not to drink at all. For women, the same thing goes as for smoking – if you do get pregnant alcohol is really bad for the unborn baby. So if you are planning to get pregnant you should at least cut down to one small drink a day – or even better, just stick to soft drinks.

Don’t take drugs

Pretty much all drugs, from cannabis to ecstasy and cocaine, have been shown to reduce fertility. If you smoke cannabis, for example, like alcohol it can reduce sperm production in men, and it can affect ovulation in women.

And like smoking and drinking, if you do get pregnant, drugs all have very bad effects on the unborn baby – cocaine is particularly nasty. So the message is simple: if you’re planning to get pregnant, stop taking drugs.

Keep your testicles cool

Obviously this is a tip for men only! Testicles hang outside the body so they don’t get too warm – they need to be a bit below body temperature to make sperm. Your scrotum keeps your testicles at the right temperature by hanging down low when you’re hot and squeezing up tight when you’re cold. So don’t wear tight underpants or trousers that make your testicles too hot. And avoid having hot baths!

Eat a varied and healthy diet

This is particularly important for women. To get pregnant and have a baby, your body needs a full range of vitamins and minerals. What's more, for men, there’s also evidence that if you eat healthily you have more healthy sperm.

Check your weight

As a woman, if you’re underweight or overweight it can reduce your fertility.

Read more about this in fertility and weight.

Relax!

There’s evidence to show that if you’re stressed out you’re less likely to get pregnant. But relaxing can be easier said than done as the months go by and you start worrying you might not be able to get pregnant. And having sex can start to feel like a chore. So make sure you spend quality time with your partner, not just baby-making time.

Comments
I have not had my periods for the last 7months. I don't use contraceptives what could be the issue. .will I get pregnant?
Missed or late periods happen for many reasons other than pregnancy. Common causes include hormonal imbalances, a lot of stress, extreme exercise, weight loss or weight gain, eating disorders, or it could be your body still working out your cycle. It is important you visit a medical provider to find out what the reason for this is and for possible treatment. You can still get pregnant, a good place to start is the medical centre. We wish you well. heck out this article;- https://lovematters.co.ke/our-bodies/female-body/not-going-with-the-flow
Hi Salome, safe days are one of the most unreliable ways to prevent pregnancy. When your safe days are really depends on the length of your cycle. The first seven days before and after your period, as well as the time of your period, are relatively safe. But, if you have a shorter cycle (shorter than 28 days), or an irregular one, this will vary. Also keep in mind that sperm can survive for up to five days and longer inside the body- so even if you have sex on a 'safe' day, you can still get pregnant, because the sperm survived until your ovulation date. This is why it's a very inaccurate. And lastly, this won't protect you from STDs. Only condoms will. Check out this article;- https://lovematters.co.ke/our-bodies/female-body/menstruation
Safe days are the first 10days from day one of periods and then from 11th day to 17th day is when I'm fertile then from 18th day and onwards I'm again safe, is it true?
Hi Maggy, safe days are one of the most unreliable ways to prevent pregnancy. When your safe days are really depends on the length of your cycle. The first seven days before and after your period, as well as the time of your period, are relatively safe. But, if you have a shorter cycle (shorter than 28 days), or an irregular one, this will vary. Also keep in mind that sperm can survive for up to five days and longer inside the body- so even if you have sex on a 'safe' day, you can still get pregnant, because the sperm survived until your ovulation date. This is why it's a very inaccurate. And lastly, this won't protect you from STDs. Only condoms will. Check out this article;- https://lovematters.co.ke/our-bodies/female-body/menstruation
Hi Mose, periods can delay for a number of reasons including weight gain or weight loss, change in environment, hormonal imbalance issues, use of a birth control method, extreme sport and even stress. You may want to consult a health provider to find out what could be causing the delay or irregular period. Check out this article;- https://lovematters.co.ke/our-bodies/female-body/menstruation
Hello Ronald, so sorry about this. It is important you seek the services of a Specialist-Gynecologist, who may conduct tests to find what the issue could be. A woman who has had a miscarriage can still get pregnant and carry the pregnancy to term. Plan and visit a Gynecologist together for further advice. Check out this article;- https://lovematters.co.ke/pregnancy/being-pregnant/miscarriage-top-facts

Hey, it is safe to have sex during pregnancy and the baby will not be harmed during sex. It is, however, important that the position during sex is comfortable and that no pressure is applied on the tummy as the pregnancy grows. Communicate during pregnancy to find which positions are comfortable. Partners can still enjoy sex throughout the duration of the pregnancy. Check out the following article for more tips;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/sex-during-pregnancy-top-five-facts

Mu wife is pregnant and has since become very moody and very irritable. I have tried to be as nice as I possibly can but I just dont think I can take anymore of this. I know she is pregnant but this is really too much. going home is becoming a nightmare every evening. Any advice on what I can do to deal with this?

Hi John, this is one of the expected side effects that comes as a result of pregnancy. This usually occurs in the first few months of pregnancy. It is unfortunate that this is causing you more problems than bringing joy. Try and talk with your partner and make her aware of what is going on and how it is affecting your relationship. Hopefully things will become better as the pregnancy progresses. Check out this article for more information;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/being-pregnant/your-body-and-pregnancy

Dear Oshi, the most likely time one can get pregnant is when they have sex around the time or when they are ovulating. Check out this article for more tips that will help in getting pregnant;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/getting-pregnant-dos-and-donts

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