How to Help to Get Pregnant – Reproductive Health
We will talk to an academic doctor of medicine – a doctor of reproduction, a gynecologist. On how pregnancy occurs and
What factors influence the fertilization process, how to facilitate pregnancy, what is right and wrong about fertilization processes, we will touch on childbirth and many other interesting issues.
– How is the process of fertilization and pregnancy?
– Pregnancy occurs as a result of the fusion of female and male germ cells – egg and sperm. The egg is surrounded by a jelly-like substance called the “zona pellucida”. It, in turn, is surrounded by a thin layer of cells – the radial crown – “Corona radiata”. When the sperm enters the egg, the membrane breaks down due to chemical reactions and only one sperm is able to penetrate into it. The sperm and egg contain 23-23 chromosomes. After their fusion, the fertilized egg – the zygote – already has 46 chromosomes, or the genetic information of both the mother and the father. In the following days the fertilized egg is divided into two, four, eight, sixteen, and so on. As a cell. “Morula” is formed first, after the accumulation of fluid in the cells, it turns into a “blastocyst”. About 5-7 days after fertilization, a blastocyst is implanted in the lining of the uterus – implantation in the endometrium and pregnancy occurs, which lasts about 280 days or 40 weeks.
– When does pregnancy occur and how many days are during the fertile menstrual cycle?
– Pregnancy occurs during ovulation, which roughly coincides with the middle period of the menstrual cycle. Ovulation days can be variable. Because the lifespan of sperm is about 48 hours (maximum 7 days) and the lifespan of an egg is 24 hours (at least 6-8 hours), the fertile period can average 3-4 days. In the case of a 28-day menstrual cycle, this period coincides with the 12th, 13th, 14th, 15th day. For example, if ovulation occurs on the 14th day, pregnancy can occur in the period from the 9th to the 15th day of sexual intercourse.
In general, the “fertile period” is the phase of the menstrual cycle when the chances of getting pregnant are highest.
– Does the time and intensity of sexual intercourse affect the fertilization process and how can we increase the chances of getting pregnant?
– To increase the likelihood of pregnancy, it is better for a couple to have sex just before ovulation, because the lifespan of sperm after ejaculation exceeds the lifespan of ovulated eggs.
There is a belief that prolonged abstinence from sexual intercourse before ovulation, the same abstinence, improves fertility, or the ability to conceive. This is not true. It is true that abstinence can slightly increase the number of sperm, but prolonged abstinence, on the contrary, can negatively affect the quality of sperm because the number of older sperm in the seminal fluid increases.
To increase the chances of pregnancy, it is considered optimal for couples to have sex during the ovulation period at intervals of 36-48 hours.
– Does pregnancy always occur when a healthy couple has sex on the days of ovulation?
– In this case, the probability of pregnancy during one cycle is only 15-25%. An important fact is that despite the couple’s normal reproductive function and regular sex life, 75-80% of ovulatory cycles do not occur during pregnancy.
– What effect does age have on the possibility of pregnancy?
– The ability to conceive decreases with age. This is especially true for women. The main reason is the decrease in the number of eggs and the decrease in quality with age. With age, the incidence of various diseases – endometriosis, uterine pathologies – increases, which also negatively affects the function of the uterus.
For example, if a 25-year-old healthy woman becomes pregnant within 2-3 months, fertile women aged 35 and over may need 6 months or more to conceive.
As for men, their ability to conceive decreases slightly with age, and significantly after 60 years.
It is known that the risk of developing genetic pathologies in children increases with the age of the parents. However, this is a general view. Usually, older parents have healthy children.
– Is it necessary to have an orgasm to achieve pregnancy?
– There is an opinion that the absence of orgasm in women has a negative effect on childbearing. This is a “myth”, pregnancy is not related to sexual pleasure. This is confirmed by the fact that pregnancy occurs even after artificial insemination.
– Does body weight affect the pregnancy process, in particular, does obesity negatively affect childbearing?
– Body weight has some effect on reproductive function, as small and excess body weight can be associated with hormonal imbalances. There is a critical body weight that is essential for childbearing. It is a known fact that girls and women who are so called. Against the background of diets they lose body weight quickly and have a mass deficit, i.e. when they have a mass index of less than 18, menstruation stops.
It is also clear that very thin and obese women often do not have any disorders of reproductive function and have children.
Obesity caused by consuming excess calories does not cause infertility. But often obesity is associated with diseases such as polycystic ovary syndrome, various hormonal dysfunctions – disorders of insulin secretion, decreased thyroid function, which adversely affects ovulation.
– What is considered a normal body weight and how to calculate the mass index?
– Mass index – BMI is calculated as follows: body weight in kilograms divided by height squared in meters. The normal range for mass index at reproductive age is 19-25. When the mass index is less than 19, it indicates a weight deficit, and when it is 26 and more, we are dealing with excess weight…
– How does stress affect reproductive function?
– Stress, negative emotions are not an independent cause of infertility. However, in some concomitant pathologies, such as anorexia nervosa (a person consciously refuses to eat, which negatively affects his psyche), hormonal changes occur and ovulation is disrupted. Various hormones – prolactin and cortisol – are secreted in excess of stress, which in itself has a negative effect on ovulation.
Stress is an important condition that accompanies infertility, which always needs proper management.
It is known that positive emotions, physical exercise, distraction from stress significantly improve the function of childbearing. It is a frequent case when a woman gets pregnant soon after adopting a child in a childless family.
– Do nutritional characteristics affect childbirth and are there any general or specific recommendations in this regard before pregnancy?
– In general, a healthy diet has a significant impact on the processes of fertilization and childbirth and the course of pregnancy. Modern people are often deficient in various micronutrients and vitamins. This is due to unhealthy and poor nutrition and has a negative impact on health.
It is known that the closure of the fetal nerve stem is completed on the 28th day after birth. Folic acid deficiency in the mother during this period is associated with an increased risk of developing fetal nerve stem defects and other congenital anomalies. Therefore, it is important for a woman of reproductive age to get all the necessary substances through healthy food. At least two months before conception, a woman needs to take folic acid, which should be continued until 12 weeks of pregnancy and beyond, because in addition to the development of the fetal nervous system, folic acid is also involved in the process of blood formation.
Taking multivitamins for prophylaxis is becoming more and more important in today’s ecology.