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We are going to cover some basic points when trying to get pregnant
We will use this abreviation ttc (trying to conceive)

Access Diagnostics Fertility Tests

Preparing the body for conception & pregnancy-lets get back to basics

5 things to think about when trying to conceive

We hope you find this quick reminder useful. If you are trying for a baby, here at Access Diagnostics is where you'll find all the help, information and fertility products you may need to help you in your journey to get pregnant.

Click here to see all fertility tests, pregnancy tests, ovulation tests, fertility vitamins, personal lubricants and lots more fertility products

How to improve your health and diet when preparing for pregnancy.

Give up smoking

Eat a healthy diet including plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables (aim for 5 portions a day)

Your diet should include plenty of protein, fibre, calcium, iron and other minerals and vitamins

Whether you are pregnant or planning to have a baby, it is recommended that you start taking 400 micrograms (mcg), of folic acid every day, as early possible. You should continue to do so until you are 12 weeks pregnant. This vitamin is known to reduce the risk of spina bifida.

Click here to see all female fertility supplements that include folic acid

Regulate your weight through healthy eating and & activity. You should be within the normal weight range for your height and build. Women who are underweight, overweight, or obese have less chance of conceiving than a woman who falls within the healthy weight range.

Pregnant women can become deficient in iron so it is important to eat plenty of iron-rich foods. A good intake of vitamin C through fruit, vegetables and juice helps your body to absorb iron. If your iron level is low, your GP or midwife will advise you to take iron supplements. The following foods will help you to keep your iron level normal: red meat, pulses, bread, green vegetables, fortified breakfast cereals

Foods to avoid include: peanuts and foods containing peanut products if you, the baby's father or siblings have certain allergic conditions such as hay fever, asthma or eczema , pâté , mould-ripened soft cheese (Brie, Camembert, goat's cheese, etc) , unpasteurised milk liver or liver products , shark, swordfish and marlin (all contain high levels of mercury), too much caffeine and alcohol , raw eggs and food containing raw or partially cooked eggs

Information taken from

Click here to see all female fertility supplements that include folic acid

Folic acid is vitally important

Trying to get pregnant & pregnancy itself can put a great deal of stress on the female body.

Why is folic acid supplementation important in early pregnancy & when ttc?

Folic acid (a B vitamin) is the only vitamin supplement that is recommended by to be taken before pregnancy for women who are otherwise eating a balanced diet.

Folic acid is needed for the development of healthy red blood cells. Adequate intake of folic acid also decreases the chance of a baby being born with a defect of the neural tube, where the baby's brain and spinal cord are formed. One example of a neural tube defect is spina bifida, where an area of spinal cord is not properly enclosed. This can cause problems such as paralysis of the legs and lack of control of bladder and bowels. The baby's neural tube is completely formed by the fourth week of pregnancy - when many women have not even realised they are pregnant.

It is therefore important to start taking folic acid supplements while preparing for pregnancy or as soon as you realise that you are pregnant. 400 micrograms (mcg, mg) is the recommended daily dose, which is over and above the usual recommended dietary intake of 200 micrograms. Folic acid occurs naturally in fresh dark green vegetables such as broccoli, peas, green beans and spinach. Many breakfast cereals are fortified with folic acid and it is also found in wholemeal bread.

A higher dose of folic acid is recommended for some women. It is very important that women who have previously had a baby with a neural tube defect, or who have epilepsy or diabetes, consult a GP about folic acid supplementation before trying to conceive.

For more information from the Medical Research Council on folic acid

We have an extensive range of pre-conception & pregnancy supplements all containing Folic Acid 400 micrograms suitable for ttc and pregnancy

Click here to see all fertility & pregnancy supplements containg folic acid

Your choice of personal lubricant when trying to conceive is more important than many people realise

Did you know that many popular personal lubricants can create a barrier that interferes with sperm?

Any lubricant that you use should be sperm friendly so as not to interfere with fertilisation.

Pre~Seed is unique & groundbreaking personal lubricant in that it is the first "sperm-friendly" intimate moisturiser that mimics natural body secretions & provides an optimal environment. Pre~Seed's moisture is delivered in a fluid with the same pH and osmolarity as semen, so as not to harm sperm, and to be mild to a woman's body. Sperm in Pre~Seed are able to move freely through both the semen and the Pre~Seed moisturiser.
Pre-Seed may be purchased from this site-see links bar

Visit this website which has lots more information about how Pre-Seed works, Pre-Seed users stories, and how it can help you when ttc

There is also a new fertility friendly lubricant called Zestica which is idea for foreplay & external application

Click here to see our range fertility friendly lubricants including Pre-Seed, Zestica & Conceive Plus

Home ovulation prediction

Around 15-20% of couples are infertile or sub fertile, and many more experience delays & resulting anxiety in conceiving which may often be caused by bad timing. Knowing the best time to get pregnant can help

An average couple takes 6 months to conceive and most GP’s will not refer for investigations until a couple has been trying for at least 12 months. As many couples are starting to try for a baby later in life these days, this delay can become quite worrying & cause a lot of anxiety.

Some of the delays in conceiving may simply be a matter of bad timing i.e. having intercourse at the wrong time in the woman’s cycle. Recent research has suggested that the fertility window (ie the best time to get pregnant) each month may in fact only be 3-4 days, and so timing intercourse to coincide with this time of maximum fertility is obviously very important.

Ovulation usually occurs 14 days before your period. If your cycle is very regular and the same length each month this makes it very easy to predict ovulation. However if your cycle is erratic or varies in length each month this can be trickier.

Ovulation predictors can be helpful in two ways:

1)To help time intercourse to maximize the chance of conception

2) To help identify if ovulation problems exist and so accelerate referral for specialist advice.

What types of ovulation prediction are there?

1) Urine tests-test urine for the presence of luteinising hormone (LH tests).Available in midstream, cassette and dip strip test. They give you advance notification of ovulation and are therefore called ovulation predictors. To see full range of urine home ovulation tests click here

2) Saliva Ovulation Microscopes-many resemble a lipstick. At ovulation, the hormone estrogen is increased, which increases the salt levels in your body. This salt increase is evident in saliva. Saliva ovulation mini microscope allows you to see the salt crystals that dry on the microscope glass slide. For more information on the Saliva Ovulation microscopes click here

3) Basal Temperature- A simple inexpensive way of telling if you have ovulated. You should take your temperature orally each morning before getting up, eating or drinking. Digital thermometers are used for their accuracy and ease of use. Ovulation usually occurs one day before the temperature rises. BBT evaluations only confirm, but do not predict, ovulation. For more information on the Basal Thermometers click here

4) Cervical Mucus or Billings method-the consistency of the cervical mucus changes during your cycle due to hormonal fluctuations. You are considered at your most fertile when the mucus becomes clear, slippery, and stretchy. Many women describe the mucus at this stage as resembling raw egg whites. One word of caution however - sperm can be confused with the mucus secretions and you could make the wrong assumption.

5) Fertility Monitor-the Clearblue Fertility Monitor also works by detecting the LH surge as well as measuring Oestrogen levels. The monitor then builds up a detailed picture of your unique hormone cycle. Clearblue Fertility Monitor is the most advanced home method to maximise your chances of conceiving. In recent research use of the Clearblue Fertility Monitor was shown to increase the chances of conceiving by 89% over the first two cycles of use.

We stock an extensive range of urine ovulation predictors, ovulation microscopes and basal temp digital thermometers as well as the Clearblue Fertility Monitor.

Click here to see all ovulation tests & ovulation predictors

Think about the male fertility issue if you have been trying for 6 months without success

Home Male Fertility Tests (home sperm count) are widely available and easy to use. Fertilityscore is a great home male fertility test that not only checks sperm count but also sperm motility. Browse our male fertility tests and products

What should we do if the result comes back low?

First thing to say is don’t panic. A low count does not mean you can not conceive it may just make it more difficult. However you do need to go and see your doctor now for further tests-this is very important.

Some of the following factors may be worth considering while you are waiting for the appointment to see the doctor.

1) Was the sample ideal? Did you follow the instructions precisely? It may be worth repeating to check this. Cooling the sample or a delay in performing the test can alter the number of active sperm, and give a false result.

2) High testes temperature. Sperm are made in the testes which are in the scrotum. This is the body's way of keeping the testes slightly cooler than the rest of the body which is best for making sperm. It is often advised for men who have a low sperm count to wear loose fitting underpants and trousers and to avoid very hot baths, saunas, etc. This aims to keep your testes slightly cooler than the rest of your body, which is thought to be good for sperm production. It is not clear whether these measures improve a sperm count, but they seem to be sensible.

3) Smoking can affect the sperm count. If you smoke, you should stop completely for optimum sperm production.

4) Alcohol. More than 16 units per week (equivalent to about 8 pints of normal strength beer or 16 small glasses of wine) may interfere with optimum fertility.

5) Drugs and medicines. Most do not interfere with sperm production, but some may do. These include: sulphasalazine, nitrofurantoin, tetracyclines, cimetidine, colchicine, allopurinol, some chemotherapy drugs, cannabis, cocaine, and anabolic steroids. If you have a low sperm count, tell a doctor if you take any drugs or medicines regularly

Click here to see male fertility tests & products

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