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Getting Pregnant Faster

Old wives' tales and myths abound - but there are some things you really can do to get pregnant faster and easier!

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In a study conducted at Harvard Medical School on 184 women with fertility problems, 55% of those who completed a 10-week course of relaxation training, and stress reduction had a viable pregnancy within one year, compared with just 20% of the group who had no stress reduction training.

In a second study conducted at the University of California at San Diego, doctors found that women undergoing fertility treatments, who remained relaxed and optimistic, had better overall outcomes than women who were pessimistic about their ability to conceive.

"If you are worried all the time about getting pregnant, if you obsess over it and think about only that, you might influence your body chemistry in a way that does affect your fertility," says Randolph. The key, he says, is to "think about making love -- and not just about making babies."

So you say you're relaxed, you're having sex at all the right times and you still can't get pregnant? Doctors say try pillow therapy!

"This involves propping your pelvis up on pillows after you have intercourse, and lying in bed for at least 20 to 30 minutes after sex, to facilitate the movement of sperm through your reproductive tract," says Goldstein, who says that he's a firm believer in this tenet as an important pregnancy aid.

What probably won't make a difference, however, are the position you are in when you have sex, that is, unless you're standing up at the time.

"As long as you are lying down -- so sperm can't run out of the vagina -- then the position is probably not going to make all that much difference, particularly if you do remain in bed with your pelvis propped up afterwards," says Goldstein.

Conception Misconceptions

As easy as it might be for some women to get pregnant, doctors say there are also some common "myths" about conception, which, for some couples, could make it harder to conceive.

One such notion is that using a lubricant makes it easier for sperm to slip slide and get inside. Not only is this not true, it could actually prevent you from getting pregnant.

"Most lubricants can change the pH or acid balance inside the vagina, and that in turn may affect sperm motility and ultimately prevent, or at least reduce the chances of a pregnancy occurring," says Goldstein.

If you find you must use a lubricant avoid petroleum jelly. It's just too sticky he says. Instead he advises trying a natural vegetable product, such as olive oil, which is less likely to cause sperm any serious problems.

Winer also cautions women to avoid douching, either prior to, or especially after intercourse, citing possible changes in the vaginal environment that could negatively impact sperm.

As to the boxers vs. briefs controversy -- the idea that wearing loose boxer shorts instead of tight briefs may help a man's fertility, mostly by keeping his sperm-making apparatus cool and comfortable. Randolf says this is simply an "old husband's" tale. The type of underwear your partner wears is of little consequence, he says.

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