Thanks to advances in medicine and women’s rights, it’s now possible to control when you have children more than ever before. Whether you’re trying to conceive or want to prevent a pregnancy, you can optimise your chances of achieving your goal by following simple advice. Here are four straightforward tips for taking control of your fertility.
#1 Know your cycle
Don’t know your luteal phase from your follicular phase? It might be time to get back to the biology basics. Understanding your menstrual cycle is key to achieving your reproductive goals, but remember that everyone is different so it’s important to get to know your body’s rhythms as well as the theory.
#2 Get to grips with the ins and outs of contraception
There is a wide selection of contraceptive methods out there, but not all forms will be suitable for everyone. If you’re breastfeeding for example, you are generally advised to avoid contraceptives that contain oestrogen, like the combined pill. The mini pill, which contains progesterone only, is a good alternative in this case. However, unlike the combined pill, this oral contraceptive must be taken at the same time each day. Online Doctor Lloyds Pharmacy suggest setting a daily alarm to help you to remember to take it. If you’re not sure what type of contraception is suitable for you, why not take a look at contraception guides online, speak to your family doctor or visit your local family planning clinic?
#3 Understand how age affects fertility
You may not like it, but age really does matter where fertility is concerned. Women reach their fertile peak in their early twenties and 90 per cent of couples will conceive naturally after one year of trying if the woman is under the age of 35. After this age, however, the chances of getting pregnant decline rapidly. While you may have heard stories about women who are far older conceiving by in vitro fertilisation (IVF), it’s best not to rely on fertility treatments as they are less effective in women over 35. Whether or not having children feels like a pressing issue in your life right now, it’s important to bear the relationship between age and fertility in mind if you do want to start a family someday.
#4 Take steps to preserve your fertility
Whether you’re having sex daily in the hope of seeing those two precious lines appear on a pregnancy test or you feel like babies are the last thing on your mind, it’s a good idea to live your life in a way that doesn’t hurt your chances of conceiving. To improve your odds of becoming a mother someday, you should avoid smoking, ensure your weight is within the healthy range and protect yourself against sexually transmitted infections.
Remember that there’s no one-size-fits-all guide to fertility. If you’re worried about any aspect of your reproductive health, you should seek advice from a trained healthcare professional.