Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.
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Can We Boost Baby Chances?

Thursday, 31 May 2012 09:32 AM


Question: My wife and I have been trying to have a baby for the last few months. So far, no luck. Are there any diet or lifestyle changes we should make to improve our chances?


Dr. Hibberd's answer:
Being aware of your wife’s menstrual cycle and the changes in her body that happen during this time can help you know when she is most likely to get pregnant. It is during ovulation that pregnancy can occur. After ovulation, every woman (unless she has a health problem that affects her periods or she becomes pregnant) will have a period within 14 to 16 days.
Ovulation signs and symptoms are often subtle. Still, understanding when you're ovulating — and having sex regularly around the time of ovulation — can improve the odds of conceiving. A man's sperm can live for up to three days in a woman's body. The sperm can fertilize an egg at any point during that time. So if you have unprotected sex a few days before ovulation, your wife could get pregnant.
Recording basal body temperature, which is the temperature at rest as soon as she awakes in the morning, can indicate ovulation. A woman's basal body temperature rises slightly with ovulation. So by recording this temperature daily for several months, you'll be able to predict the most fertile days. Women are most fertile and most likely to get pregnant two to three days before their temperature hits the highest point and 12 to 24 hours afterward.
Drinking alcohol the night before, smoking cigarettes the night before, getting a poor night's sleep, having a fever, doing anything in the morning before you taking the temperature reading — including going to the bathroom and talking on the phone can affect temperature recordings. Therefore, your wife needs to take the reading while in bed before she gets up.
There are other methods of calculations, and over-the-counter ovulation kits or fertility monitors to help find the best time to conceive. These kits work by detecting surges in a specific hormone called luteinizing hormone, which triggers ovulation.



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