Top 4 factors influencing your chance of conceiving
1 in 6 couples have difficulty becoming pregnant when they start trying to conceive. But what exactly are the contributing factors that influence one couple’s success over another’s struggle?
At The Fertility Centre, we know that it can be very stressful and discouraging if you’ve been trying for a while without success. So we’ve made it that much easier to get a little extra help to grow your family – simply book online to meet one of our fertility nurses / book a bulk-billed GP consult at a time that suits you. It’s free, and we’re happy to help.
Read more from our experienced fertility specialists, as they reveal the top 4 factors that influence your chances of conception – and when you should seek extra support.
1. Timing conception
The timing of intercourse plays a critical role in conception, and there’s a common misconception that the best time is the day of the female partner’s ovulation. In actual fact, having sex 24-48 hours before ovulation gives a woman the best chance of falling pregnant because it is at this time that she is at her most fertile.
The egg needs to be fertilised within 12 hours after it’s been released, which is why it’s best to have sex two to three days before you ovulate, so there’s sperm waiting to meet the egg. As a general rule, regular intercourse two to three times a week, will boost your chances further - it is better for a male to regularly ejaculate.
2. Tick tock, that damn biological clock
While young and healthy couples can experience fertility issues, too, the age of the woman is the most important determining factor for success. This is because the number of healthy eggs in a woman’s ovary dramatically declines as time goes on – especially once she is over 35.
Men, however, completely replace their sperm every three months, and continue to do so throughout their life. Studies are starting to show that semen volume, morphology (shape) and motility (the way it moves) does decline as a man ages, too. But this decline only starts to become more noticeable after the age of 40.
Bottom line: we recommend seeking professional advice after six months of trying, and it’s more important that you do so if the female partner is over 35 years.
3. It takes two to tango: reproductive factors
In approximately 30% of cases, ‘female’ factors such as tubal disease, ovulatory disorders (like PCOS) or endometriosis may be the cause of struggling to fall pregnant.
In the same percentage of cases, ‘male’ factors, such as low sperm count or tubal blockages affect conception. In another 30% of cases, a combination of both female and male factors may be at play.
So again, it’s important for couples to seek advice after 12 months of trying if the female is under 35, or 6 months if 36 or older. The reality is, you may not realise you have female or male factors contributing to infertility until you conduct fertility tests.
An IVF fertility assessment is a great place to start.
4. Your lifestyle can either hinder or boost your chances
As a couple, it’s important to think about your lifestyle choices – because they do matter. Simple lifestyle modifications can increase your chances of conception, for both those trying naturally and those undergoing fertility treatment.
- Maintaining a healthy weight - check your BMI and make sure you’re in the healthy range
- Eliminate smoking and recreational drug use
- Introduce regular exercise to improve overall cardiovascular health
- Women should also take folic acid and multivitamins daily for overall health
- Eat a healthy and well-balanced diet
- Reduce caffeine and alcohol intake
- Snooze away – make sure you have enough sleep, and a regular sleep pattern
At The Fertility Centre, we believe everyone deserves the chance to have a family.
If you’ve been trying to conceive for a while, or perhaps you’re ready to take that next step, we have a dedicated team of IVF experts who work together to help you write your next chapter – all at an affordable cost.
Speak with our fertility nurse/ bulk billed GP about starting the IVF process today. It’s free to have a chat, and at the very least, sometimes talking through your individual circumstances can help you feel at ease with where you stand on your fertility journey.
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