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

Health tips to increase your chances of getting pregnant

How can you increase your chances of getting pregnant? Here are some top tips to help you conceive.
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.

For more information, check out ‘How can I work out when I’m going to ovulate?’ in the period FAQs.

Don’t smoke

This goes for everyone! 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 immediately, as it’s very bad for the unborn baby.

Don’t drink

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 them down low when you’re hot and squeezing them up high 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

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

Hi there, it is completely okay to continue to have sex even after you get pregnant, it is safe and it is good for you. It is important however to use positions that don't put pressure on your tummy as the pregnancy progresses. Have a look at the following article for additional tips;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/making-love/sex-when-youre-pregnant

Hello there, bleeding during pregnancy is common, especially during the first 3 months and usually it's no cause for alarm. But because bleeding can sometimes be a sign of something serious, it's important to know the possible causes, and get checked out by your doctor to make sure you and your baby are healthy. Visit your health provider for a check up and further advice. We wish you all the best in your journey.

Hi Cess, you can have sex all through your pregnancy. It is however important to use positions that your comfortable especially as your tummy grows and also ensure there is not pressure applied on the tummy during sex. It’s true sex can sometimes set off a miscarriage, but it’s not the cause. The miscarriage was going to happen anyway, and sex just starts it off. Check out the following articles for additional information;-

https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/sex-during-pregnancy-top-five-facts

https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/being-pregnant/miscarriage

I have a two years old daughter . I have been trying to get pregnant since 1 year now. What do I do. My period is irregular now cos I take herbs to see if I can get pregnant. Also, my hubby complained that my breast milk is still coming out little when we make love.

Hi Onyi, having an irregular period does not affect ones ability to get pregnant. I am not sure about the herbs you are taking and what they are meant to do, I would however suggest that you consult a specialist Doctor for a further advice especially if you have been trying for more than one year. On the issue of breast milk, if you are still breast feeding then this is expected. When you stop breastfeeding the milk production will also cease in a short while. Check out the following article for additional tips to improve your chances of getting pregnant;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/getting-pregnant-dos-and-donts

If you used family planning before getting a child can it affect your ability to get pregnant in future? When I was in college I used FP to prevent pregnancy. Please let me know.

Hi Jamila, it can take upto 12 months to get pregnant. This means you are still within what is the acceptable period of trying. I suggest you keep trying but if after twelve months if you are still not pregnant, it will be important that you seek advice from a specialist. About getting to know about your fertility, you have a fertility test done at a health centre. Have a look at the following articles for additional information;- 

https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/getting-pregnant-dos-and-donts

https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/fertility-and-infertility

Hi, a good palce to start is to take on a healthy lifestyle starting with eating healthy foods and avoiding processed foods. It is important to consult you health care provider or midwife as you get ready to become pregnant. It is also important to avoid the use of alcohol and other habits such as smoking. Check out the following article for more information;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/female-fertility-top-five-myths-busted

Hey Emill, when a woman has an orgasm, they are likely to notice it because of the intense pleasure that comes with having an orgasm. When you orgasm, the pelvic floor muscles squeeze together rhythmically, tensing, and relaxing. Sometimes the womb contracts and relaxes, too.This all gives an intensely pleasurable feeling in the pubic area, and some women feel it throughout their bodies. Check out the following article to see how to get an orgasm during sex;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/making-love/orgasms/her-orgasms

I think we are pretty healthy going by our annual check ups but we have trying to get pregnant for more than 2 years without any success. Other than infertility what else can make it difficult to conceive?

Hello Ruth, there are different reasons that make it difficult for one to get pregnant. These underlying reason which maybe hormonal or physiological cause infertility. Since you have been trying for two years, it is important that you now seek the services of a specialist together with your partner who may conduct tests to determine what could be causing this. In the meantime have a look at the following article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/getting-pregnant-when-you-cant-seem-to-have-a-baby

Is it true that it is more difficult for a woman who is 35 and over to have a baby? I am 33 and we have been trying to get a baby for more than 2 years now. Please help.

Hey Anitah, this is just a myth, it may take a little longer to get pregnant. However, if you have been trying for two years without success, it is important you consult a specialist who may conduct tests and further advice you. Have a look at the following articles for more information;- 

https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/female-fertility-top-five-myths-busted

https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/what-to-do-when-you-cant-get-pregnant

I probably need to relax. I am too anxious/excited about getting pregnant with out first baby that it's working against me. Six months on and still trying... Thanks for the insights.

Hello there, I can imagine the distress this may have caused. It is important that you discuss this with your wife and together agree on how to proceed. Get to hear what your wife thinks and feels and also share your own concerns about this. Together explore your options and then make plans moving forward based on the best option you will have taken. We wish you all the best. 

For women, think you ought to let them know that fertility reduces with age. So that they can be aware when making decisions about their future regarding family and academics.
My wife is 24 years but we have been trying to have a baby for nearly 12 months now with no success. We are young and very health no child bearing problems from either family. what might be the problem?
I've been married for 10months now, no sign of pregnancy after taken clomid. One thing I've observed is that after sex, the sperm released inside if me goes out even after hanging my legs up for an hour. Help me

Hi Cheta, first, it may take upto twelve months for one to get pregnant but when this time is exceeded it is important for one to seek the services of a specialist. Secondly, it is normal for semen to spill out of the vagina after having sex, this however doesn't stop one from getting pregnant. Infact you don't really have to 'hang' your legs for an hour. Some of the semen is going to spill out either way. Have a look at the following article for more tips on getting pregnant;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/pregnancy/before-pregnancy/getting-pregnant-dos-and-donts

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