If you’re trying to conceive (TTC), there are a few things you need to do to give yourself the best possible chance of success. From tracking your cycle to taking prenatal vitamins, here’s what you need to know about TTC. In this blog post, we will discuss what to do before and while trying to conceive, ways to conceive naturally, and ways to conceive with medical assistance.
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a medical professional, the information provided in this blog post has been information based on research and experience. Please consult with your doctor/ medical professional for anything medical-related and any concerns related to trying to conceive.
What is TTC and How is it related to Pregnancy?
TTC is an abbreviation for “trying to conceive.” When a couple is trying to conceive, they are engaging in activities that are meant to increase their chances of getting pregnant. This may involve tracking their menstrual cycles, having sex during ovulation, and taking prenatal vitamins. Some couples may also opt for fertility treatments if needed.
5 Things to do before/while Trying to Conceive (TTC) during 0-6 Months
If you are trying to conceive here are 5 tips you should try before and while trying to conceive:
1) Track Your Cycle
One of the most important things you can do when TTC is to track your menstrual cycle. This will help you pinpoint when you ovulate and when you’re most likely to conceive. There are a few different ways to track your cycle:
- Use a period tracker app like Clue or Flo.
- Keep a physical calendar and mark the first day of your period each month ( you can also use the calendar on your phone).
- Use an ovulation predictor kit (OPK).
Ovulation is the KEY (other then God’s timing) to getting pregnant! It was something I honestly never knew until I started researching TTC tips and information. Scientifically, it should happen days after your mentation flow. However, this doesn’t always happen, for many reasons. One common reason is hormone imbalance!
Hormones causes our bodies to perform/react in the way that it does. Therefore, if your hormones are imbalanced, it can cause issues with ovulation.
And side note, just because you appear to have a healthy, consistent monthly flow, it doesn’t mean you’re ovulating. Trust me! Prior to getting pregnant and having a seemingly perfect cycle, I wasn’t ovulating.
How did I know?
By using OPK’s to detect ovulation.
So keep reading and we will share more information on OPK and the best ones to purchase.
2) Take Prenatal Vitamins
Another important thing to do when TTC is to start taking prenatal vitamins. These vitamins contain folic acid, which helps prevent birth defects of the brain and spine and Omega DHA.
It takes approximately 3-4 months for eggs to mature and there’s other supplements that are beneficial when it comes to helping produce healthy eggs and environment.
Prenatal vitamins can be found in your local grocery store, but be sure purchase a quality supplement with the recommend daily values and nutrients.
Look for prenatal vitamins that have:
- 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid
- 400 IU of vitamin D
- 200 to 300 milligrams (mg) of calcium
- 70 mg of vitamin C
- 3 mg of thiamine
- 2 mg of riboflavin
- 20 mg of niacin
- 6 mcg of vitamin B12
- 10 mg of vitamin E
- 15 mg of zinc
- 17 mg of iron
- 150 micrograms of iodine
3) Eat Healthy
Eating a healthy diet is important for overall health, but it’s especially important when you’re trying to conceive. Eating healthy foods helps promote fertility and ensures that you and your baby are getting the nutrients you need. Some foods are especially good for fertility including leafy green vegetables, whole grains, and salmon.
This can also help manage or maintain your weight, which can play a factor when TTC!
Although you are consuming vitamins, you want the first source of your nutrients to derive from food. In addition, watching what we eat can effect our hormones.
Therefore, eliminating processed food, junk foods, sodas, etc. while consuming natural antioxidants, herbs, veggies, etc. can aid in increasing your changes of getting pregnant and sustaining your pregnancy.
4) Medical Exams and Consultation with Doctor
If you are trying to conceive, have a medical exam and discuss concerns with a doctor. Your doctor can help you determine if there are any underlying medical conditions that may be affecting your fertility. They can also provide guidance on how to best increase your chances of conceiving.
If you’ve been TTC or planning during this time frame, schedule an appointment with your OBGYN, so you can begin to complete basic examinations (bloodwork if necessary) and create a pregnancy plan, for certain stages throughout your journey.
Because of the level of care and attention TTC requires, it’s very important to find a doctor you trust and takes time with their patients.
Although you’re not considered infertile until you’ve been trying, having unprotected sex, for at least one year, finding the right doctor is important. As you may have concerns, issues and questions that needs to be explain along the way.
Remember, your doctor should be apart of your team in aiding this a successful and comfortable journey!
5) Buy Cheap Pregnancy Tests and Ovulation Prediction Kits (OPK)
If you’re trying to get pregnant, you need to start tracking your cycle for ovulation. The best way to do this is by using ovulation tests.
You can buy ovulation tests at your local drugstore or online.
I recommend you purchasing online, as you will be testing for ovulation daily, when TTC. When purchasing online, you will get enough to last throughout the month (depending on the count). You must read the instruction first, as the ovulation test looks similar to pregnancy test, but test for different hormones and results are different (opposite).
OPK works by detecting the presence of the luteinizing hormone (LH) in your urine. This hormone is produced by your body right before ovulation.
You should start testing for ovulation about two weeks before your period is due. If you have a regular 28-day cycle, you should ovulate around day 14.
NOW, a good rule of thumb, if you don’t know your body or when you ovulate, start testing as soon as your mensuration flow ends, for the best results. As science can only predict when things should occur. As we know, everyone is different. And this is just good especially if you’re hearing/doing this for the first time.
Also, if you have irregular cycles, it may be more difficult to predict when you will ovulate. So you might want to test daily.
Once you start seeing a positive LH result on your ovulation tests, you can start having sex every other day until you get a positive pregnancy test result.
Having cheap pregnancy test at hand will now be beneficial as you will tests about two week later (TWW ) Two Week Wait) and beyond until you get a BFP (Big Fat Positive) or AF (Aunt Flow).
Pregnancy test can also be bought at your local drugstore or online. These tests work by detecting the presence of human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) in your urine. hCG is produced by your body during pregnancy.
What to do 6-12 months (of BD (baby dancing) when trying to conceive naturally
It’s been 6-12 months of BD (baby dancing) and you haven’t got pregnant? It’s not the end of the world. Here’s what you should do:
1) Have doctors check for fibroids, endometriosis, PCOS, and other fertility roadblocks
If it’s been over 6 months of Baby dancing, and you still haven’t conceived naturally, you should consult with your doctors and have them check for any fibroids, endometriosis, PCOS, and other fertility roadblocks.
Some of these examines may require separate doctor visits, outside of your OBGYN’s office, so be prepared just in case you have to wait.
Uterine fibroids are very common (not normal because there not supposed to be there) and seen more in African American women. They’re detected through ultra sound, and although they maybe present, you can still get pregnant. Depending on its size and location.
If you experience painful, heavy bleeding during their periods, you should consult with your doctor and explore an examination to see if you have fibroid(s).
During my TTC journey, my doctor found a fibroid but it wasn’t hindering pregnancy.
If you do have fibroids, consult with your trusted doctor for an actions plan (if needed) because they grow from hormones and although it may not hinder pregnancy, it could effect baby’s environment.
If no actions are needed, make sure it’s monitored to prevent any other issues down the line!
Endometriosis, PCOS, etc. are other things you should discuss with our doctor and if it’s an issue, determine your next steps.
2) Run test and check levels of:
FSH, AMH, LH, estrogen, prolactin, thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH), and testosterone.
If any of these levels are abnormal, it could be indicative of a fertility issue. Make sure to consult with your doctor.
3) Have doctor check Fallopian tubes for blockages
If the Fallopian tubes are blocked, it will be difficult to conceive naturally. Your doctor can check for blockages through a hysterosalpingogram (HSG).
It’s a super simple process and worth checking if you’re scheduled for other internal exams.
4) Check for polyps and have removed
Polyps are growths that can form on the inside of the uterus. They are usually benign, but can sometimes cause issues when TTC.
This was one of my TTC issues!
During an examination, my doctor discovered polys in my uterus, which can block the sperm’s traveling path to the egg for conception.
I had to have a day procedure for removal and conceived my first child shortly after.
3 Supplements to research that can help promote fertility
Here are 3 supplements to research, that can help promote fertility according to experts:
I have personally used DIM for 1-2 months after having polys removed and was able to get pregnant with my first son within that time frame. You can read more about the benefits of using Dim <<< by clicking.
DIM is a great supplement for estrogen dominance (ED). I’m self diagnosed to have ED as I have fibrocystic breast, a small uterine fibroid, polys, etc.
I purchased my DIM from AMAZON and still take when I remember, as there’s no side effects and a good supplement to keep in your medicine cabinet!
After taking, I noticed a huge ovulation surge and I finally started to get positive ovulation tests.
Dim helps your body to eliminate bad estrogen, balancing two important hormones estrogen and progestogen.
If you suspect you’re ED, once you’re pregnant, make sure your doctor review your progestogen levels, as they may be low, therefore requiring you to take (insert) progestogen suppositories during your first trimester.
I had to insert progesterone suppositories for both pregnancies and all went well!
2) Vitex (I brought but didn’t use)
I brought Vitex in hopes that it would help me get pregnant. However, I never ended up using it. You can read more about the benefits of Vitex <<< by clicking.
It’s a highly recommended herb within the TTC community.
I purchased once I suspected I had issues ovulating, after my doctor prescribed me Clomid.
This was a sticky situation for me! Even though the doctor prescribed, I never took it because of the side effects. My doctor explained it forces your body to ovulate, but it could produce ovarian cyst. Due to the information, I opted not to take and still got pregnant!
Please know, there’s no judgement for anyone who decides to take the medication, it was an option I didn’t feel comfortable exploring, as I didn’t want to complicate things if my TTC journey continued longer than it did.
3) Shatavari (i would research and consider)
Shatavari is an Ayurvedic herb that has been traditionally used for female reproductive health. It is thought to be a tonic for the reproductive system and can help to regulate hormones, improve egg quality, and increase cervical mucus. You can read more about the benefits of Shatavari <<< by clicking.
Cervical mucus is needed to trap the little swimmers. Remember, your cervical mucus should resemble egg whites!
TTC with medical assistance
Before we dive into these Trying to Conceive Medical Assistance Options, it’s important to know that Doctors won’t categorize you as infertile until 1 year of TTC. After the year mark, you may hear your doctor suggest one of the following:
IVF (also known as In Vitro Fertilization) is a process where your eggs are fertilized with your partner’s sperm in a laboratory dish, and then the resulting embryos are transferred to your uterus.
Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a fertility treatment that involves placing sperm inside your uterus to facilitate fertilization.
If you choose to use a surrogate, it is recommended that you go thru an agency to get legal proper representation. If you live in the United States, here is the United States Surrogacy Law Map.
Closing Remark- Time to Get Pregnant!
Speaking of time, in addition to everything else mentioned in this article, you will need time!
Timing is EVERYTHING!
All in all, it took me approximate 9 months to conceive the first time and I did absolutely NOTHING the second time around. Honestly, baby #2 was a surprise and not planned at all!
Although there is a science to getting pregnant, the reality is, NONE of the listed information, even with medical assistance can result in pregnancy. Because it’s all in God’s time.
But i encourage you, don’t give up because we don’t know when that time may be!
When getting into this journey and seeing all that it takes to get pregnant, it opened my eyes that life is nothing short of a miracle.
An even with the best of the best information, not even a medical doctor can tell you guarantee pregnancy or vital pregnancy.
I hope that this information is helpful to you and brings you encouragement to keep the faith.
This journey can be very stressful so take care of yourself, while manifesting your sweet baby into existence!
Sending so much baby dust your way, and be sure to save our website for more mom related tips, after you get your BFP (Big Fat Positive).
Surprising my husband
Our Baby Announcement to (close) Family and Friends
Our Baby Announcement to My Parents
The second time around, was so close, we didn’t do any announcements, it was phone calls, lol!
Don’t forget to chat with us in the comments! I’m happy to answer any questions and provide more information if possible!
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Mbi Feh MK, Wadhwa R. Clomiphene. [Updated 2022 Jun 27]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK559292/
Nestler J. E. (2008). Metformin in the treatment of infertility in polycystic ovarian syndrome: an alternative perspective. Fertility and sterility, 90(1), 14–16. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fertnstert.2008.04.073
Petre, A. (2019, August 9). Which benefits of chasteberry are backed by science? Healthline. Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/vitex#:~:text=Vitex%20may%20improve%20female%20fertility,for%20women%20to%20become%20pregnant
WebMD Editorial Contributors. (2021, May). Health benefits of Shatavari Powder: Pros, Cons, and how to use it. WebMD. Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/are-there-health-benefits-of-shatavari-powder#091e9c5e821ab9bf-1-3
Willett – M.A., E. W.-. (2021, July 19). 5 ways to benefit your fertility by taking dim. Natural Fertility Info.com. Retrieved November 2, 2022, from https://natural-fertility-info.com/benefit-your-fertility-with-dim.html
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