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Saturday, November 26, 2005

Getting pregnant

Hi Dr Amy,

My husband and I have been trying to conceive for 10 months now. I am 34 yrs of age we both smoke and I have a stressful job. Does the above limit my chances of getting pregnant? We only have sex once a week does that make a difference (the amount of times)?

Thank you,
Louise

Dear Louise,

Smoking can interfere with fertility. It is not clear if stress has a significant impact.

The frequency of sex does not matter, but having sex near the time of ovulation is extremely important. You can only get pregnant at the time that you ovulate (release an egg). For most women, ovulation occurs 14 days before the next period. For women who have a 28 day cycle, that means that they would ovulate on day 14 (counting from the first day of the previous period). You don't have to have sex on the day of ovulation since sperm can live inside you for several days and wait for the egg to be released. However, it is very important to have sex at least once and preferably twice in the days leading up to ovulation.

Most couples will get pregnant within the first 12 months of trying. If you do not get pregnant in the next 2 months, you should make an appointment with your gynecologist or an infertility specialist to make sure that nothing is wrong.

Sincerely,

Amy

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