This moment is full of excitement, questions, emotion and probably a tad bit of fear. Now that you've made this life-changing decision, what's next? How can you best prepare to dive into this journey? A good first step is to find an OB/GYN as your partner. Your doctor will most likely advise you about preparing your body for pregnancy with a healthy lifestyle.

Identifying Your Fertile Days

Many couples spend so much time preventing an unplanned pregnancy that they assume that when they are ready for a family all they have to do is stop using birth control. Becoming pregnant doesn’t always happen quickly — it can take up to a year or longer — and it’s not automatic.

To get pregnant, healthy sperm must meet an egg in the fallopian tube. Just before an egg is ready to be fertilized, it is released by the ovary into the fallopian tube. This is called ovulation and usually happens about two weeks before a woman expects her period. For a woman who has a period every 28 days, ovulation occurs about 14 days after the first day of her period. Women with shorter or longer cycles can calculate their ovulation day by subtracting 14 days from the length of their cycle. For example, a woman with a 21-day cycle ovulates on day 7, and a woman with a 35-day cycle ovulates on day 21.

For the best chance of getting pregnant, plan intercourse in the week around your ovulation day. Experts recommend intercourse every other day, starting five days before you expect ovulation and ending two days after you ovulate. (Find out your ovulation day with Texas Health Resource’s ovulation calculator Talk to your physician if you are concerned you are not identifying the correct days. Also, see your physician to learn about additional ways to increase your chances of pregnancy.

Request a Free Pregnancy Planning Kit

Healthy, happy babies start with healthy, happy parents. Help be prepared with a pregnancy planning kit, packed with helpful tips, tools and information.

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