Get Pregnant

While many women may avoid pregnancy for years, the desire to get pregnant often comes on quickly and couples may want to get pregnant within the first month of trying. In fact, with random intercourse, a fertile couple has about a 25% chance of becoming pregnant any single cycle, and for women with longer cycles, this can translate to a long period of waiting to get pregnant.

One way to increase your chances of getting pregnant is to engage in fertility-focused intercourse. This is the process of charting your fertility signs and targeting intercourse to the 5 or so fertile days preceding ovulation. The increase in cervical fluid, which can easily be observed on toilet paper after using the bathroom, is the single best sign of fertility. As you reach your fertility peak, cervical fluid will go from being sticky and the consistency of rubber cement to a more lotiony consistency and finally to the consistency of raw egg white. Depending on their age, this egg white period may last anywhere from 1 to 5 days.

If you are hoping to get pregnant with a boy, you should abstain from intercourse until the day of ovulation (which usually corresponds to the last day of egg white-quality cervical fluid) and the day after. Intercourse the day after should ideally be done in the morning to help ensure that the egg is still viable. This is called the Shettles method and is based on the theory that sperm carrying the Y chromosome (“boy sperm”) are faster but less hardy than sperm carrying the X chromosome (“girl sperm”).

Alternatively, if you are hoping to get pregnant with a girl, you should begin intercourse every other day as soon as your menstrual period ends and until approximately 4 days before ovulation. This is much more difficult to time unless you have a very regular cycle and always ovulate on the same day. In terms of cervical fluid, this often corresponds to the first day of creamy, lotiony cervical fluid, although it may also be possible to get pregnant with a girl on the first day of egg white-quality cervical fluid. In any case, trying to get pregnant with a girl also places intercourse further from the time of ovulation, which makes it less likely that you will get pregnant at all any given cycle.

Finally, if you are trying not to get pregnant, having intercourse after confirmed ovulation ensures that you are completely infertile and will not get pregnant. Although it is possible to release more than one egg during ovulation, it is not possible to ovulate more than once in a given cycle.

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