Here’s the ONLY guide you need if you are planning to have a baby

If you are planning to have a baby, and are wondering how to go about it, let this guide be your companion!
planning baby
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Dr Apurva Satish Amarnath Published: 13 Nov 2021, 08:00 am IST
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Couples who are planning to conceive MUST be aware that for a pregnancy to happen, the egg reserve, uterus and fallopian tube, as well as the semen parameters should be within the normal limit. Ideally, all couples should get preconceptional counselling and testing done, so that any potential problems can be addressed right away. If all reports are normal, trying to conceive naturally is the best approach.

Ovulation tracking is a fertility awareness method or a method of natural family planning. You can have sex on the two days before and the day of your expected ovulation, if you know when you ovulate. This increases your chances of conceiving. 

Whether you are just starting out and trying to conceive, have been trying for a while without success, or have recently had a miscarriage, tracking ovulation is likely to help you improve your chances of conception. It’s also important to be aware of other ovulation symptoms, such as breast tenderness, bloating, light spotting, and cramping.

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Tracking ovulation cycles to conceive naturally

The calendar method

If your menstrual cycle is the same length every month, you will most likely ovulate two weeks, or 14 days, before your period. This applies only to those who have regular cycles (21 to 35 days). And since every woman’s cycle isn’t exactly the same every month, the time period between Day 10 to Day 19 of the cycle is expected to be the fertile period, during which a couple should try for pregnancy.

Ovulation predictor kits 

They are urine tests, just like home pregnancy tests that show a specific colour pattern when your luteinizing hormone (LH) levels rise. An LH surge usually means you will ovulate within 12 to 36 hours.

Keeping track of your basal body temperature

By keeping a chart throughout your cycle, you can determine when a sustained temperature increase indicates that you have ovulated. In certain cases, BBT charting can even tell you whether you’ve conceived.

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Keep your body temperature in check. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

Monitoring cervical mucus change

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Cervical mucus charting isn’t for everyone, but it can give you a good idea of when you will be ovulating. This method of monitoring provides a relatively high level of accuracy, when combined with basal body temperature charting.

Having sex on a regular basis

Tracking ovulation isn’t necessary if you’re sexually active and prefer to have sex two to three times per week, or roughly every two to three days. While ovulation monitoring can be beneficial for couples who have scheduling or fertility issues; for others, having sex on a regular basis may offer the same or similar chances of getting pregnant.

What about infertility?

A couple should not seek medical assistance for infertility until they have attempted to conceive for a year or have an obvious problem or condition that is interfering with conception. Women over the age of 35 who have been trying to conceive for more than six months should be evaluated, because a woman’s age can affect her fertility. Women over the age of 40 should make an appointment as soon as possible. 

Infertility in either the male or female can be caused by a single factor. It could also be the result of a combination of factors affecting both partners. Getting a fertility evaluation is the first step toward a solution.

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There’s a strong link between endometrial polyp and fertility. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Importance of fertility screening before even planning on starting a family

Couples have been delaying pregnancy due to the high cost of living, which has resulted in low fertility rates. They prioritise and concentrate on their careers to have enough money before even considering starting a family. These delays, however, come at a cost.

When women wait longer to have their first child, they are unaware that their biological clock is ticking. Men are not immune to the ravages of aging. By the age of 40, male fertility begins to decline. That is why fertility screening is important.  

Fertility specialists are now encouraging couples who plan to have children in the future to get a fertility screening as soon as possible.

Early fertility screening, like health screening, allows for prompt diagnosis of existing conditions that will affect a woman’s or a man’s fertility, allowing them to be treated immediately prior to attempting natural conception through sexual intercourse.

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About the Author

Dr Apurva Satish Amarnath, Fertility Consultant, Nova IVF Fertility, Bangalore ...Read More

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