Basics on Trying to Have a Baby - Medical Monday
Trying to Have a Baby - Medical Monday Basics
There are basic questions that you need to know the answers to if you are trying to have a baby. Without the correct answers, you may not get pregnant even if nothing is wrong.
Sometimes it can be difficult to ask your physician about what you need to know. Sometimes, you don’t even know to ask or what to ask.
We make it easy on the RMACT (Reproductive Medicine Associates of CT) website. We spent a lot of time collecting frequently asked questions (FAQ’s) about pregnancy and fertility and then answered them. Who do we mean when I say “we” answered the questions?
Our board certified reproductive endocrinologists, who are sometimes also referred to as fertility doctors. But not all fertility doctors are board certified. Or reproductive endocrinologists. In fact, a physician can call themselves a fertility specialist without any specific training or skills.
The point here is that our doctors are the ones who answered these questions for you. Can you count on the answers being informative, helpful, accurate, clear and up to date? Absolutely. These are answers that you can count on to proceed with trying to have a baby.
Do you have some additional questions that are not addressed here? Please email me at FertileYoga@gmail.com or respond in the comment section of this blog. In either of those places, the questions will come directly to me so your information is secure and safe.
These questions and answers came straight from our website. I hope that they help clarify when and how to start trying to build your family. ~Lisa Rosenthal
Questions About Fertility
At what time of the month is a woman fertile?
The most fertile time of a woman’s cycle is just before or the of day ovulation. Ovulation usually occurs two weeks before a period starts, so it is necessary to count backwards from the anticipated start of the next period in order to find the most fertile time. Take the number of days in the usual cycle (from the beginning of one period to the beginning of the next) and subtract 14. For example, a woman with a 32-day period would likely ovulate around day 18 (32-14=18), while a woman with a 28-day cycle would ovulate around day 14 (28-14=14). We recommend every other day intercourse around the day of ovulation. That would mean days 12, 14 and 16 for women with 28 days cycles.
It is best to have intercourse before ovulation rather than afterwards, so a woman who ovulates on day 14 would have a good chance of conceiving if she has intercourse on either day 13 or 14. For women with irregular cycles you can extend the period of every other day sexual relations.
Alternatively, women with irregular cycles may want to use an ovulation predictor kit, which can be purchased over the counter at most local pharmacies. This involves testing your urine around the time of ovulation using a detector stick, which give you a visual reading. Additionally, there are electronic monitors which detect ovulation by tracking two hormones (estrogen and luteinizing hormone) starting with urine testing on day one of your menstrual cycle. The methods that utilize urine predictor sticks or urine ovulation detector machines are usually highly sensitive, accurate, and reliable.
How can a woman tell if she ovulates?
The simple, inexpensive way of finding out the approximate time of your ovulation is to take your basal temperature (that is, your body temperature at rest) every morning and record it on a chart. You can buy a Basal Body Thermometer at your local drug store. Save all your charts so you can review them with your doctor. Three or four months of charting should be adequate. If your temperature goes up after the middle of your menstrual month you likely do ovulate. In general you ovulate about two days prior to the temperature rise.
How often should we have intercourse?
It is a good idea to have intercourse every other day around the time you ovulate. Remember, every woman is different, and may not ovulate exactly on “Day 14.” And, just because you ovulated on “Day 14″ this month, doesn’t mean you will next month. It is preferable to have intercourse every other day rather than every day so that sufficient sperm will be available. To increase your chances of the egg becoming fertilized, do not douche or use lubricants immediately before having intercourse. See more pregnancy FAQs on RMACT's website.
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About Lisa Rosenthal
Lisa has over thirty years of experience in the fertility field. After her personal infertility journey, she felt dissatisfied with the lack of comprehensive services available to support her. She was determined to help others undergoing fertility treatment. Lisa has been with RMACT for eleven years and serves as Patient Advocate and the Strategic Content Lead.
Lisa is the teacher and founder of Fertile Yoga, a program designed to support men and women on their quest for their families through gentle movement and meditation.
Lisa’s true passion is supporting patients getting into treatment, being able to stay in treatment and staying whole and complete throughout the process. Lisa is also a Certified Grief Recovery Specialist, which is helpful in her work with fertility patients.
Her experience also includes working with RESOLVE: The National Infertility Association and The American Fertility Association (now Path2Parenthood), where she was Educational Coordinator, Conference Director and Assistant Executive Director.