Women who are overweight or underweight may have some difficulty conceiving. Being overweight can have a significant impact on your chances of getting pregnant and having a healthy baby. If you’re overweight and planning to have a baby, then it’s a good idea to start exercising and eating healthily a few months prior to trying. Being underweight can also significantly reduce a woman’s chance of getting pregnant, causing hormonal imbalances that affect ovulation. A healthy BMI is considered to be between 18.5 and 24.9.

2. AGE

A woman’s fertility starts to decline once she hits 30, so if you are above this age, then there’s a possibility
that age is impacting your ability to conceive. If you’re in your 30s and have been trying for a baby for over nine months, then it’s advisable to see your GP and find out what could help your chances of conception – options may include changing your health and lifestyle choices or taking prenatal vitamins.

3. FERTILITY ISSUES

Fertility issues can occur in both male and females. Conditions affecting a woman’s fertility can include damage to the fallopian tubes, problems with ovulation, endometriosis and conditions affecting the uterus. Infertility causes in men include low sperm count, problems with the tubes carrying sperm, erectile dysfunction and problems ejaculating.

Around one in seven couples experience difficulties in conceiving – that’s approximately 3.5 million people in the UK. If, after a year, you’re still having trouble, it’s definitely worth seeking help.

4. STRESS

Stress can interfere with conception so it’s important to try to relax throughout the time that you’re trying for a baby. Stress affects the functioning of the hypothalamus – a gland in the brain that regulates your appetite and emotions as well as the hormones that tell your ovaries to release eggs. If you’re stressed out, you may ovulate late in your cycle or not at all.

5. CYCLE CONFUSION

The vast majority of women experience a normal 28 day ovulation cycle meaning that, with close monitoring and unprotected sex at the right time, they should be able to get pregnant. If you have been finding it difficult to conceive, paying closer attention to your natural cycle may be all that is needed to overcome your issues and conceive naturally.

Through monitoring you basal body temperature (lowest body temperature achieved during rest), examining cervical mucus and tracking when your menstrual cycle begins, you should be able to analyse when the most productive time is for you to attempt to conceive.

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