Saturday, October 8, 2011

The importance of timing

I think one of the "infertility myths" that most of us believe when we start TTC is that if you have sex on or around ovulation, you WILL get pregnant. 100% chance, and it is just a matter of catching the egg. Of course, that doesn't count for many women who don't know ANYTHING about their cycles, and still believe that ANY sex at ANY time can result in pregnancy....they certainly have further to go in understanding how timing intercourse around O is important.

So breaking it down, based on research, there are about 5-6 days of the "fertile window" meaning sex during this time will have the highest probability in resulting in conception.  These are usually the 4 days BEFORE O, O date and they just throw in day after O, because calculations could be off and they really just don't know FOR SURE how long an egg might last, etc. The reason it is the 4 days before O is that sperm can have a longer lifespan--if conditions are right, maybe 5 days---but that would have to be High sperm count coupled with lots of EWCM with the perfect pH balance in the uterus to keep the sperm going till the egg arrives. And because it can take sperm up to 1-2 hours to reach the fallopian tubes, it's good to have as many waiting to receive the egg as possible.

Anyway, according to many articles, in a healthy couple--meaning no known fertility issues--intercourse during the fertile window only give between 20%-30% chance of pregnancy--I've seen between 15%-30% quoted---most stated that for couples with one or more fertility issues, this drops to 12%-15% chance of conception. So each cycle you may have no more than a 1 in 5 chance of conceiving...this is MUCH less than the certain 100% most of us grow up believing.

I think this is something that I remind myself of....because after 3 years of BFNs and a miscarriage, it can get disheartening to fail cycle after cycle after cycle.


Maria said...

I like to think of it this way... I have a 100% chance of conceiving if it is God's will and zero if it isn't. So, all I can do it keep hoping that this cycle is my 100%.

Melissa said...

Very true. If you can't tell, I have issues with control, and TTC is definitely testing this. I often remind myself that no matter if it is timed perfect, I have plenty of BD in my fertile window etc, that I will only successfully conceive if it is in God's well. In my religion, when we make plans, we usually add "inshallah" meaning, if God wills it. Definitely, this is something that is in God's control. But I know this doesn't mean that I don't have to do anything...God may choose to use a cycle where I've tracked everything and pinpointed O---or he might decide to use a cycle where I didn't pay attention at all--it's up to God.

Motherhood Wanted approved!

Motherhood Wanted approved!
Diana Farrell, MA


Motherhood Wanted approved!