Ready to Start a Family? Tips to Help You Conceive

You may think you already know the baby-making basics: Quit using birth control, have sex and in nine months you’ll be holding your bundle of joy. In reality, getting pregnant is a little more complex. To conceive more quickly, you want to first track your menstrual cycle. Here is some help to get started.

Day 1: Your period begins.

Day 14: The average menstrual cycle is 28 days, which means ovulation typically occurs in the middle of your cycle. Women can get pregnant only around the time of ovulation — when the ovary releases an egg. It’s tricky to know exactly when you ovulate, but there are a few signs:

  • Changes in cervical fluid. Around ovulation it will have a wet “egg white” consistency.
  • Cramping or pain on one side of your pelvis
  • Breast tenderness
  • Bloating

Days 9 through 15: This is the best time to conceive.

You have the greatest chance of becoming pregnant if sperm are present in the fallopian tube when you ovulate. Since sperm can live in the fallopian tube for three to five days and an egg can survive in the fallopian tube for only about 24 hours after ovulation, you want to have sex sometime in the five days before and up to one day after ovulation.

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