A lot of us realize once we start trying to conceive that it’s not just about having regular sex. For most couples, it’s not as simple as that. There’s timing, there’s frequency, there’s how! Lots of questions are met with less-than-accurate advice—there are tons of fertility myths floating out there (like these). We’ll give you the honest truth about how to TTC effectively.
Q: What positions are best for conceiving?
A: Any position! There is no scientific evidence that any one position increases your chances of conceiving, so you can feel free to get creative!
Q: What the heck is a basal body thermometer?
A: It’s an accurate thermometer used to track your ovulation. You chart your exact temperature every morning, as soon as you wake up, before you even get out of bed. During your cycle, you’ll notice a slight increase in your basal body temperature of less than a half degree (.3 or .4 degrees usually) that lasts for 2-3 days, which means you have ovulated. The key is to have sex before that 2-3 day period, so you’ll need to track for at least one cycle to know what days to have sex the following month.
Q: Can I use lube?
A: There are certain lubes that are considered sperm friendly. You want to make sure your lube specifically says that it is safe for couples trying to conceive.
Q: How often should we have sex?
Abstaining from sex (or ejaculation of any kind) to increase sperm count or potency is not an effective solution because it allows for buildup of dead sperm cells in semen. Too frequent sex can be detrimental to men with lower than average sperm counts. So, in most cases, having sex every other day is the sweet spot. For males with normal to high sperm counts, having sex daily works, too.
Q: What days should we have sex?
A: This depends on when you ovulate in your cycle, but it’s usually around 14 days before your period starts. For a rough estimate, you can enter your cycle length and last menstrual period into an ovulation calculator. For a more accurate idea, you can track your cervical mucus, basal body temperature, and/or positive ovulation (LH) test strips over the course of several cycles to find a pattern. The key is to have sex before you ovulate because sperm can live for up to 5 days in your body, whereas your egg can only lasts in the Fallopian tube for 12-24 hours.
Q: Should I put my legs up after sex?
A: Nope, you can head right to the bathroom (and avoid that UTI!). It’s just a myth that laying flat or with your legs up after sex increases your chances of conceiving.
Q: When will I know if I’m pregnant?
A: The most sensitive at-home pregnancy tests can tell you up to 6 days before your missed period. If you get a negative result, wait a few days and test again.
Q: Is there anything we can do to increase our fertility?
A: Yes, so much! Eat a healthy diet, exercise, sleep well, and avoid these TTC no-nos. Women should take a prenatal vitamin even before trying to conceive (here’s why you should start 3 months before), as well as Fertility Support for Her with myo-inositol which is proven to improve egg quality. Men can take Fertility Support for Him to increase sperm count, mobility, and motility. (We have a Dual Fertility Bundle to score all three of these for less, by the way.)
We hope this helps you enjoy the TTC journey a little more!