10 Common Mistakes when Trying to Get Pregnant

Anastasia Kochanova, a fertility and IVF expert shares some of the most common fertility mistakes. She asked 500+ couples that were trying to get pregnant and made a top-10 list of things you should avoid. 

common mistakes when trying to get pregnant

Fertility Mistakes - Top 10 Things to Avoid when Getting Pregnant

For some women, the ability to get pregnant seems like a mystical combination of luck and genetics. Why do some people get pregnant right from the first try, while others try for years? For some couples, the very idea of conception often turns into a nightmare. The thing is that many of us make the same common mistakes when trying to get pregnant. Therefore, in this post, we will list some of the most widespread fertility mistakes to avoid. 

1. Worry Too Much

don`t worry when trying to get pregnant

Most likely, you have at least one friend who, having become pregnant, said: "This happened exactly at the moment when I stopped thinking about it." It annoys, frustrates and gets on your nerves, especially when all you want is to give birth to a baby. And it seems that nothing will work. However, your friend is telling the truth. Stress can be one of the main reasons you cannot get pregnant. 

A high level of the stress hormone, cortisol, can negatively affect fertility. A study by American scientists who observed 400 couples trying to get pregnant showed that women with high levels of alpha-amylase (a stress indicator) were 29% less likely to become pregnant than women with an average index. Experts say that constant stress reduces the production of hormones responsible for a healthy cycle.

Relax and try to let go of the situation for a while. Learn to meditate, go for yoga. Some asanas contribute to a rush of blood to the pelvis, thus stimulating the production of the necessary hormones. And this has a beneficial effect on the ability to conceive. Stop planning your pregnancy so much and every day remind yourself that this is a miracle that happens very, very often.

2. Hyper / None Sexual Activity

having to much or to less sex - fertility mistake

If you are going to do it - do it right! Many couples believe that if you "save" sperm and not have sex for a week, then the chances of conception will increase significantly. It is one of the most common mistakes when trying to get pregnant. After about a week of abstinence, sperm motility considerably decreases. For a successful conception, doctors recommend having sex every day or every other day for a week until the day of ovulation and including it. More frequent sex can negatively affect the ability of sperm to fertilize. 

On the contrary, if you do this less often, you can skip the conception window. So, if your sex life is not as turbulent as at the beginning of a relationship, this is a good reason to diversify it. Besides, regular sex helps to establish a healthy menstrual cycle. The partner's body releases hormones that affect the female reproductive system, so regular sex has a more significant effect on estrogen production.

3. Use Dubious Granny Tips

douching with baking soda as one of the biggest fertility mistakes

It would seem the 21st century in the yard, but many women continue to believe in the miraculous power of douching. It seems quite logical: with any infection, poor nutrition, bad habits, the vaginal environment becomes acidic. In such a condition, sperm dies and cannot fertilize an egg. That's why so many people use a weak soda solution to make the environment alkaline and create favorable conditions for conception. 

However, doctors are opposed to this method. Soda kills not only harmful microorganisms but also important ones, thus violating the natural pH of the vagina. Also, douching with baking soda or iodine can exacerbate inflammatory processes and diseases such as erosion and damage to the cervix. Most often, women do not know it before visiting a gynecologist.

4. Blame Yourself

male and female fertility

Speaking of infertility, we usually believe that the problem is on the part of a woman. But in fact, the responsibility lies on both partners. Doctors say that 40% of infertility cases are male and 40% female. The remaining 20% is a combination of both factors. But don't panic ahead of time. Remember that it takes from 6 months to a year for a healthy couple to conceive.

5. Incorrect Calculations

strict fertility schedule image

The most common mistake when trying to get pregnant is the erroneous determination of the ovulation day. Most often, it occurs in the middle of the cycle. However, this applies to women with a 28-32-day period. Ovulation, as a rule, happens 14 days before the menstruation starts. Therefore, if you have a 24-day cycle, ovulation will occur on day 10. 

If your period is noticeably longer, let's say, 42 days, then we can assume that you ovulate less often, not in each cycle. In this case, as well as if you have an irregular cycle, forget the rules. Here you can not do without a test to determine ovulation. It will help you correctly find the conception window.

Another common mistake in getting pregnant is counting the beginning of the cycle is not from the first day of menstruation. The first day of your period is when your blood is released. Some women consider the day before or after the menstruation starts as the actual start of the cycle. For a successful conception, it is highly essential to know the exact day the period begins.

6. Live on Strict Schedule

fertility calculations when trying to get pregnant

No matter how you try, it is impossible to plan a pregnancy. As mentioned above, a healthy couple needs from 6 months to a year to conceive. But many women need six months only to normalize their cycle after the end of taking oral contraceptives. There will be no ovulation until the period becomes regular. 


Therefore, if after six months your cycle has not returned to normal or you are not sure that you are ovulating, you should visit a doctor.

7. Hurry

lay on the back when trying to get pregnant

No one knows why so many people are sarcastic about the claim that after intercourse, it is advisable to lie on your back with slightly raised buttocks for about 20 minutes. Doctors unanimously claim that this method increases the possibility of conception by as much as 80%! Therefore, if you want to dance the victory dance after a successful, as you think, conception, refrain - at least for 20 minutes.

8. Ignore Your Worries

doctor fertility consultation image

Perhaps you have always had an irregular cycle, and because of this, you have difficulty conceiving. Or maybe you have diabetes and want to make sure everything is under control before becoming pregnant. Consulting a specialist does not mean being paranoid! There are situations in which you should not ignore your worries. Here you are thinking not only about yourself but also about your unborn child. 

If you have any questions or worries, it is best to immediately find a specialist who will explain everything and tell you about the pitfalls that may occur specifically on your way. Thus, faced with difficulties in trying to get pregnant, you will already be ready for them.

9. Do Not Give up Bad Habits

get rid of bad habits to concieve

It is necessary to get rid of bad habits at least a year before trying to get pregnant. Why do women continue to drink alcohol and smoke, knowing how detrimental this affects the ability to conceive? 

Doctors around the world warn that the first trimester is the most important in shaping the baby's body. There is no such amount of alcohol that would be safe for it. However, some expectant mothers, drinking alcohol in the early stages, do not yet know that they are pregnant. Therefore, if you are not protected,  act as if you are already pregnant - do not consume, or at least minimize the consumption of alcohol and cigarettes.

10. Forget about Your Partner's Health

sperm quality image

One of the most harmful mistakes to avoid when trying to get pregnant is staying with your bad habits. What is harmful to your fertility can harm your partner's ability to conceive. Cigarettes, alcohol, an unbalanced diet - all this negatively affects the quality and quantity of sperm. Studies have also shown that smoking and alcohol abuse lead to sperm damage at the chromosomal level. Sperm wholly restores in 3 months, so your partner should give up bad habits at least for this time. Make sure he consumes enough nutrients, selenium, vitamins E and C - they are especially useful for men.

As for the effect of temperatures on a man's ability to conceive, opinions differ. The American Society for Reproductive Medicine claims that it does not matter for male genitalia. Some doctors, however, recommend that you refrain from taking frequent hot baths, even if the man has no problems with sperm quality.

Another group of specialists found that exposure to radiation from mobile phones can damage the male ability to conceive, especially if you keep the phone in your pants pocket. However, not a single study revealed a clear link between the effects of heat and male fertility.

Summing up Common Mistakes when Trying to Get Pregnant

I hope that after reading this article you will never make the same fertility mistakes. Ask any questions in the commenting section below or drop us a live if you would like to know more about IVF programs and advanced infertility treatment!

anastasia kochanova ivf and fertility expert

Author: Anastasia Kochanova

After earning a graduate degree Anastasia devoted her life to the family and now is growing two wonderful kids. Along with that, she decided to help other intended parents complete their families and fill homes with joy and children's smiles. That's why she started an egg donor organization, which grew into an international egg donor database. Consequently, she joined the Sunshine IVF team and became a match expert and adviser for more than 200 couples, single men and women.

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