Here are 5 Important Steps You Need to Take First
Are you planning to have a baby? There are many things to think about and prepare before actually conceiving! First off, you would need to eliminate the possibilities of any complications for you and your baby by getting your body ready for the pregnancy. Changing your lifestyle to prepare for pregnancy is crucial, especially if you have been trying to conceive for a long time.
Here are 5 vital steps to help you and your body be in the best state to conceive:
1) Consult Your Doctor
See your doctor or gynecologist for preconception, conception, and even post-conception health consultations. Your doctor will need to address any health conditions you may have that would affect pregnancy.
Your doctor can offer medical advice that will help you manage the condition to have a successful conception. Conditions like STDs, thyroid disease, high blood pressure, and other chronic medical conditions require serious attention, especially during pregnancy.
A visit to your OB or GYN office is an essential step to take when planning on having a baby. They can keep you well-informed with anything concerning your medications, vaccinations, and so on that would allow you to have an easy conception.
When planning to have a baby, your reproductive health doctors are not the only medical practitioners you need. You should also visit your dentist. It is vital to visit your dentist as much as it is to visit your OB or GYN. According to studies, pregnant women are prone to having dental issues and gum disease. Visiting your dentist means that you can protect your dental health and prevent any issues from occurring in the future.
Dental care gets riskier during pregnancy, as there would be limitations to pills you can use, including pain relievers. So it is best to take the step to visit your dentist before pregnancy.
2) In-Vitro Fertilization
Concerns about infertility are among the reasons one should consult their doctors if they are planning to have a baby. In this case, your doctor may recommend in-vitro fertilization for you. IVF is a way of using medicines and surgical approaches to assist reproduction. It is used to help people with fertility issues conceive a baby. This procedure requires a fertility doctor (a reproductive endocrinologist) to take mature eggs from a woman’s ovaries and then fertilize them in a lab.
First, the woman is given medications to help make several of her eggs mature for fertilization – this process is called ovulation induction. Then, her eggs are collected to be mixed with sperm to help fertilize the eggs – this is known as insemination. The eggs and sperm are specially stored together to make fertilization happen. Sperm may be injected directly into the egg if the sperm has low motility, which means it cannot swim well, to reach the egg for fertilization.
After that, one or more fertilized eggs (now embryos) are put directly into the woman’s uterus. This is usually done after 3 to 5 days from when the eggs were collected from the woman. This collection of eggs from the woman’s ovaries is called egg retrieval.
Pregnancy occurs when an embryo gets into the lining of the uterus. The process takes several months to complete. It may work at the first attempt, but more commonly it will take several. The success rate of this depends on different factors, including age. The success rate after the first retrieval for women under 35 is 55% but drops to 13% for 40 years old women. However, this is not to say that it is not worth it. Invitro fertilization will surely increase your chances of getting pregnant if you or your partner has infertility issues.
3) Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle
It is generally crucial to lead a healthy lifestyle. However, it becomes way more essential to be in great health when planning to have a baby. You should stop using certain drugs, smoking, drinking alcohol, and so on. This kind of lifestyle can easily cause birth defects that may be life-threatening for the baby and mother.
When it comes to maintaining a healthy lifestyle in preparation for having a baby, it is also vital to maintain a healthy weight. Being obese or underweight exposes you to many serious health problems. An unhealthy weight can cause pregnancy complications and other chronic health problems like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, etc.
Also, add exercise to your daily routine. Aside from the regular exercises, include Kegels as well. Kegels are an important exercise for women, especially as it prepares them for pregnancy and helps build the pelvic muscle. It helps strengthen the woman’s vaginal walls and hip bones, which make childbearing less painful, easier, and safer. So stay healthy, eat well, and exercise regularly as part of the steps to take when planning to have a baby.
4) Stay Away From Harmful Environments and Avoid Toxic Substances
Avoid exposure to harmful substances in your environment. Whether in your house, workplace, school, or wherever, make sure you don’t come in contact with any toxins.
This includes even the most common chemical substances you can find in your immediate environments, such as cat or rodent feces, bug spray, etc. These substances can damage your reproductive health and make it difficult for you to conceive. Exposure to even a small amount of toxins can cause issues during pregnancy that could affect your health and your baby’s health. Toxins can damage both female and male reproductive health.
5) Learn About Your Family Health History
Having information about your family health history can prove useful for you when trying to have a child. Find out if your family has any health complications that may affect reproduction. This will help you to prepare to deal with them.
Talk to your doctor about family health issues, if there are any. Consider going for counseling to address any genetic issues that may be in your family, so they don’t affect you when you want to have your baby.
In all these, visiting your doctor is considered the most important step to take when planning to have a baby. A gynecologist, obstetrician, and urologist are experts in issues relating to reproduction, and other related health topics. They will typically address all of the tips we pointed out in this article.
Also, prepare yourself mentally and financially because you will need to be prepared as much as possible when having a child. Maintain a healthy lifestyle as suggested in this article. Carry on with the good and healthy habits from pre-conception to conception and even after you have your baby as breastfeeding is a vital aspect of your baby’s wellbeing, as well!