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How To Get Pregnant Faster

What You Can Do When You Want to Get Pregnant Right Now

By

Updated May 30, 2014

Written or reviewed by a board-certified physician. See About.com's Medical Review Board.

Couple lying together flirting and laughing

Be sure to have fun when you're trying to get pregnant!

Dimitri Otis / Taxi /Getty Images

There are a variety of reasons you may want to get pregnant fast. Maybe you want to space your children a certain number of years apart, or maybe you are trying to beat your biological clock. You might want to get pregnant because your partner is in the military and you'd like to conceive before deployment, or you may not have a specific reason for getting pregnant quickly -- you are just eager to become parents!

The tips below will help you learn how to get pregnant faster, but it's important to realize they will not work for everyone, and "faster" for some may mean conception in a month or two, while "faster" for another may mean pregnancy within a year or two.

Unfortunately, pregnancy isn't something that can be planned exactly. So many factors come into play, including the fertility of you and your partner, your menstrual cycle and ovulation, your overall health, and your current life style.

If you can't get pregnant as quickly as you'd like, don't blame yourself. Keep in mind that while 62% of couples will get pregnant after three months of serious trying, and 92% conceive within a year, one in 10 will experience infertility and need help.

Tip #1 for Getting Pregnant Fast: Have Lots of Sex

You probably already know you need to have sex to get pregnant, and you may even know that you need to aim for ovulation to increase your chances. What you may not know is that having sex often, every other day or every two days, for the entire month is good for baby making.

Having sex at least three to four times a week boosts your chances for success because...

  • It increases the possibility of having sex on your most fertile days. If you're only aiming for ovulation, and you make a mistake, you may totally lose that month. If you have sex every other day or every two days, you're likely to have sex at least once, if not twice, during your most fertile time.

  • Frequent sex improves sperm health. Healthier swimmers means you'll be more likely to conceive.

  • Sex after ovulation may even help with conception. To be clear, you can't conceive if you only have sex after ovulation. But some preliminary research has indicated that semen exposure may play a role in the implantation stage of the embryo.

You could even aim to have sex every day of your cycle, but for most people, this will lead to burnout. Not to mention it's really not necessary.

Tip #2 for Getting Pregnant Fast: Optimize Your Baby Making Sex

You may be able to get pregnant faster if you optimize your conception sex. One important thing to be aware of is that regular personal lubricants, like Astroglide and KY Jelly, are harmful to sperm. They prevent some of the sperm from swimming to their destination and the chemicals in these lubricants kill many of them off. (Note, however, that these lubricants cannot be used to prevent pregnancy.)

The best lubricant for conception is your own cervical fluid. But if this is an issue for you, there are sperm-friendly options available.

It's debatable whether sexual position or lying down after sex will help you conceive. However, research on IUI treatment found that lying down after insemination boosts pregnancy rates. Could this apply to sexual intercourse? It's impossible to say, but if you're trying to conceive faster, you may want to at least try out lying on your back after sex for a few minutes. Just in case.

On the other hand, if missionary position is a big turn off for you, maybe more creative positions would help. Research has found that sexual arousal plays a role in how much sperm is ejaculated. Female orgasm may also help with conception.

Having passionate sex may help you get pregnant faster. So have fun and enjoy yourselves!

Tip #3 for Getting Pregnant Fast: Use an Ovulation Predictor Kit or Ovulation Monitor

There are a number of ways to detect your most fertile days, the two days prior to ovulation. For example, you can chart your body basal temperature, check for fertile cervical mucus, track cervical changes, or use a saliva ferning microscope.

The problem with all these methods is they have a steep learning curve. For BBT charting, figuring out how to get your temps right in the morning and interpreting your chart is an issue, and another big issue is that a BBT chart only shows you when you ovulated after it's already happened (and it's too late to have sex to make a baby on those days.) BBT charting can work wonders when you're open to trying for a few months, but not if you want to get pregnant now.

You may have an easier time using ovulation predictor kits or ovulation monitors if you're trying to get pregnant fast. OPKs are like pregnancy tests, in that you pee on a stick or strip of paper. Unlike pregnancy sticks, they are a tad tricky to interpret, but most women figure them out. Ovulation monitors take much of the learning curve out of OPKs, as a digital device tells you when you're most fertile. No interpretation of lines involved! They are more expensive, though.

You may want to combine charting with OPKs, as there are advantages to charting besides detecting ovulation. However, when it comes to pure ovulation detection, if you're going for speed and you're not an experienced charter, OPKs or ovulation monitors are your best bet.

Tip #4 for Getting Pregnant Fast: Do What You Can to Optimize Your Health and Fertility

In the short term, things you can do to optimize your health and fertility include...

  • Getting enough sleep. Odd sleep and wake cycles can throw off your menstrual cycle, which is unlikely to lead to infertility but could make getting pregnant fast more difficult.

  • Eating a balanced diet and drinking enough water. Shun extreme diets or binging when you're trying to conceive.

  • Lowering stress, if at all possible. It's debatable whether or not stress leads to infertility, and the current research indicates it likely doesn't. However, acute stress can throw off your cycle. If you want to get pregnant in a month or two, one off cycle can put a serious dent in your plans.

  • For the men, keeping the family jewels away from the heat. Hot tubs, laptops placed directly on the lap, seat warmers, and sitting too long with the legs close together can all increase the scrotal temperatures, which can negatively impact sperm counts.

  • Washing your hands and staying away from sick people. Illness can throw off your cycle.

  • Cutting back on caffeine. It's unclear what, if any, effect caffeine has on fertility, but if you want to conceive quickly, cutting back to 300 mg per day (that's one cup of brewed coffee or two cups of black tea) may be worth it.

  • Quit smoking and cut down on alcoholic drinks, and this is for the men and the women. Not an easy one for some, but something that may not only improve your health now but also help you have a healthier pregnancy and be a good example to your future child.

There are other things you can do to improve your fertility and overall health that take more effort and time. A big one is making sure your weight falls within healthy limits. Being just slightly overweight has been shown to decrease fertility.

More on optimizing fertility:

Tip #5 for Getting Pregnant Fast: Insist On Getting the Care You Deserve, Should You Need Help

Last but not least, if you don't conceive within six months (if you're over 35) or within a year (if you're younger than 35), go see your doctor. Don't wait. Getting help doesn't mean you're giving up; it just means you're brave enough to find out what may be wrong.

Some causes of infertility get worse with time, so getting help when you need it may help you get pregnant faster, with the help of treatment.

Would you like to receive trying to conceive tips and fertility information every week? Sign up for a free fertility newsletter here.

Sources:

Kelton P. Tremellen; Diana Valbuena; Jose Landeras3, et al. "The effect of intercourse on pregnancy rates during assisted human reproduction." Hum. Reprod. (2000) 15 (12): 2653-2658. doi: 10.1093/humrep/15.12.2653

Tur-Kaspa I, Maor Y, Levran D, Yonish M, Mashiach S, Dor J. "How often should infertile men have intercourse to achieve conception?" Fertil Steril. 1994 Aug;62(2):370-5.

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