So you are thinking about trying to have a baby – now what? Part four.

So you are thinking about trying to have a baby – now what? Part four.

The final part of our four part blog on what you need to know about trying to conceive.

How long does it take to conceive?

Unfortunately humans aren’t the most fertile species and the likelihood of conceiving from any given cycle of trying is not actually that high. 

Fertility can vary widely from one couple to the next and while some couples fall pregnant quickly and easily it can take a little bit longer for others.

The average couple will take about four months to conceive and around 85 per cent of couples will get pregnant within 12 months.

There are various reasons for this but the important thing is not to be alarmed if it doesn’t happen in the first month or two. This is quite normal.

You may want to talk to your local doctor or perhaps get a referral to see a gynaecologist or fertility specialist if you have very irregular periods, have been trying for a year or longer or if you are in your mid-30’s or older and have been trying to fall pregnant for six months without success.

In a lot of cases everything is fine and you may well still conceive spontaneously before too long, but, some couples may benefit from some help in falling pregnant. If it’s taking a while and you’re worried you may want to check things out.

How can I boost my chances of conceiving?

The best time to try to conceive is within a few days either side of ovulation but, the difficult thing can be to know if or when ovulation is happening.

If you have regular periods then you will probably ovulate 14 days before your next period is due. So for women with a 28 day menstrual cycle ovulation would generally occur on day 14 after the first day of your last period, whereas for women with a slightly longer menstrual cycle at 32 days, ovulation would be around day 18 after the first day of your last period.

You don’t need to have intercourse at exactly the time of ovulation, as sperm can live within the reproductive tract for some days before fertilising an ovum.  Having intercourse several days either side of the time you expect to ovulate should help to maximise the chances of conceiving.

Some women have unpredictable menstrual cycles and may only ovulate infrequently, which may reduce the chance of conception. Talking to your local doctor and perhaps seeking referral to someone who works in this area would be a great next step.

We offer a fertility service which provides individual fertility awareness education sessions, fertility optimisation and oral ovulation induction while actively researching further fertility enhancing approaches to subfertility.


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