Ok. So my wife and I we are trying to concieve and we have been trying for about 4 months. We originally started with doing nothing and using test every month. Then in Nov I started to track her cycle. Now for the month of Dec we brought an Ovulation Test and were hoping shes preggo, but if not I need help.
On the website I saw different charting methods, initials that I don't understand, tests, and you name it! I don't know where to start! I think she cycles anywhere between 21 and 23 days. Idk someone help.
I'd recommend reading the book Taking Charge of Your Fertility if you haven't already. It's a great resource for information on the female reproductive system, charting cycles, and how to maximize your chances of conceiving. It also has some information on tests and fertility treatments, should you end up having to go that route.
Here is a list of fertility-related abbreviations used here that you might find helpful. At the bottom are links to other fertility-related resources, though most are geared toward couples using fertility awareness to avoid pregnancy. It all works the same, though. If you know when you're fertile, you can know when to try to conceive and when to try not to conceive. Most people don't require quite as in-depth knowledge for trying to conceive, but if you are facing difficulties, the more you know can be very helpful.
In a fertile cycle, a woman usually ovulates between 10 and 14 days before the start of her next period, though it could be as long as about 16 days. This time period between ovulation and the start of a woman's period is called her Luteal Phase (LP). A luteal phase shorter than 9 days is generally considered to be inadequate for supporting pregnancy, but a short LP is one of the most easily treated fertility problems.
If your wife's cycles are 21-23 days, she could be possibly be ovulating as early as Cycle Day (CD) 7 and possibly (though unlikely) even earlier than that. Ovulation test strips may give you a better idea of when in her cycle she is ovulating, though they are not as accurate as many other methods of charting, though usually good enough for trying to conceive. Assume that she ovulates the day after the first positive test (read the instructions carefully to know what constitutes a positive test), and count the days after ovulation (starting 2 days after the first positive test) until the day before her next period starts to get a good estimate of how long her LP is.
For trying to conceive, it is good to aim intercourse before ovulation. Sperm can potentially live for several days in a woman's body if she has healthy cervical fluid. An egg is only viable for up to 24 hours after ovulation, and often much less. It can take up to 24 hours for sperm to reach the egg after intercourse, so it can be difficult to conceive if intercourse does not happen before ovulation.
There are a whole lot of options to try if your wife isn't pregnant in a few months. Charting Cervical Mucus (CM) can not only give a couple the best idea of when it is a good time to try for a baby but can give a woman a good idea of the overall health of her cycle. Charting temperature confirms ovulation.
Check out "Fertility Cycles and Nutrition" by Marilyn Shannon for information on nutrition and supplements for fertility for men and women. (Hint: Oysters and other traditional aphrodisiacs tend to contain nutrients important for fertility. Oysters, for example, are the most concentrated food form of zinc, a nutrient very important for male fertility, and some is used/lost every time a man ejaculates.) Men who consume organic foods have double the sperm count of men who consume conventional foods, and women's bodies require a wide array of nutrients to be ready to build a baby. We put a lot of emphasis on folic acid (synthetic folate), though a small minority of women are unable to use folic acid and require food-based folate instead. There are some prenatal vitamins (such as NewChapter Organics) that contain food-based folate that might be a better option for these women. Vitamin B6 or progesterone supplementation have been shown to increase the length of a woman's luteal phase. In the medical realm, there are numerous medications and procedures that you could talk to your physician about, and the new NaPro (Natural Procreative) Technology is pioneering natural fertility treatments with a greater success rate than even IVF for most fertility problems.
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