Women are well aware that they should see their doctor and make lifestyle changes when trying to get pregnant. But it’s not enough to simply make lifestyle changes because other factors, such as age, fertility issues, and ovulation, must also be considered. Thankfully, even if things seem overwhelming, you can take some measures to help make the process easier.
Include these checklists on your top priorities at least three months before trying to conceive:
1. See Your Doctor
Since it takes two to tango, you and your partner should both see your doctor to assess your reproductive health and your overall health. Even if you believe you’re healthy, your doctor will discuss any issues that may affect your pregnancy. These include existing medical conditions, lifestyle, age, and other factors.
A doctor will also ensure that your immunizations have been updated. Flu, MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella), ZVZ(varicella-zoster virus), and HPV (human papillomavirus) shots are the most commonly recommended vaccines. Others depend on every woman’s current medical condition.
2. Maintain a Healthy Weight
Many studies have found a relationship between obesity and an increased risk of miscarriage. As most people know, a healthy weight is a key factor in conception. Both overweight and underweight women can have infertility issues. Although overweight and underweight women can still get pregnant, there may be ovulation issues for some.
3. Stop Alcohol, Smoking, Drugs, And Limit Caffeine
Female smokers are less likely to conceive than women who don’t. It was found out that male and female smokers have a higher infertility rate than those who don’t smoke. And the more you smoke every day, the more likely you are to increase your infertility risk.
Drinking alcohol or using drugs not prescribed by your doctor may make it more difficult for you to become pregnant. It can also increase your chances of miscarriage and make it harder to have a healthy baby. It’s also best to reduce your caffeine intake since it can also reduce fertility and increase the chance of miscarriage.
4. Learn about Preconception Health and Fertility
Fertility awareness allows a woman to understand her body more, including ovulation. Preconception health education helps a woman understand the health risks and benefits of her behaviors before, during, or after pregnancy. When she makes changes to these behaviors, she can reduce risks to her health and her baby.
Though almost all the information you need is available online, it must come from a reliable source. For personalized preconception care education, consider checking out online preconception care courses if they fit your needs.
5. Get More Nutrients and Take Vitamins and Folic Acid
A healthy nutrient-rich diet will help promote normal reproductive function. You may include fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and dairy products. The American Pregnancy Association and fertility experts in nutrition recommend increasing your calcium and folic acid intake to reduce the risk of congenital disabilities.
Since you need to consume 400 micrograms of folic acid daily, you can eat more citrus fruits, legumes, and fortified bread and cereals. Some foods, such as yogurt, low-fat milk, dark leafy vegetables, and tofu, can be your source of calcium. For most women, doctors recommend taking supplements of these two minerals.
6. Exercise, Rest and Relax
Working out before pregnancy can help your body adjust to the changes during pregnancy and labor. In fact, some women can continue their routine exercise safely throughout pregnancy. If you’re one of them, talk to your doctor about it.
A 30-minute, five-day exercise program, such as brisk walking, can be a good start if you are not currently exercising. A study suggests that moderate exercise like walking, biking, and golfing is associated with a shorter conception time. Most importantly, try to relax, reduce stress and get enough rest.
Nobody knows your body better than yourself, but your doctor can do a lot to help you with the process when trying to get pregnant. Besides, every woman is different, so you can ask any questions about your body. For personalized advice, fertility programs and courses that you can find online can help. Just make sure that they’re from reliable and credible sources.