Fertility refers to your ability to reproduce and to have children. If you are fertile, you can initiate intercourse, and cause and sustain a healthy pregnancy, including a live fetus.
Many things can affect your fertility. Men must have enough healthy, motile sperm. In addition, sperm must have the ability to make it all the way to the egg, and then fertilize it. Women must be able to have healthy ovulation.
There are so many factors involved in conceiving a child, and the article below will help you in better understanding fertility, as well as reproduction.
What Does Fertile Mean?
Fertile means that you can create, then carry and then give birth to live babies. It all begins with the ability of the man to produce sperm and the woman’s ability to produce eggs. They must be able to join into an embryo at conception. It may sound easier than it actually is. The process is actually very complex, and all of the conditions must be just right in order to have a healthy baby.
For a successful pregnancy, a sperm needs to fertilize an egg. Then the egg must travel down through fallopian tubes, before implanting itself in the wall of your uterus. The conditions in your uterus and vagina must be perfectly optimal in order for the fertilized egg to become implanted.
When are Women Fertile?
The time of peak fertility depends on whether you are having regular cycles, if your hormones are within the proper ovulation range, and if you’re having intercourse at the correct time in the cycle. The breakdown is here:
Your menstrual period actually occurs all during the month. Your body goes through the process of having a period in order to prepare for a pregnancy. After the end of your period every month, your body has already begun to prepare and then ripen between 10-20 eggs.
At about the 14th day of the cycle, your body releases the most viable egg and sends it to the fallopian tube. This process takes roughly a full 24 hours. If a sperm is present in this time period, you might get pregnant.
Sperm can live for about five days within the woman’s body. They may stay within the vaginal canal, or make their way to the uterus, or even get into the fallopian tubes.
You must have monthly periods before you can become fertile and then conceive a baby. This occurs between the ages 10 and 15-16. Periods will come each month until you go through menopause, which usually occurs between 45 & 55 years old. Some women enter and finish menopause early, while some do so later.
- Window of Fertility
After your egg has left one of your two ovaries, it will be fertile for about a day. If it doesn’t come into contact with a sperm, it will break up and then leave your body as you are starting your period.
The actual fertility window, when you are most fertile, begins five days before ovulation, since the male’s sperm can live within your uterus or vagina for that five day period. The egg does not stay in the area long, so the window of fertility will close the day after you have ovulated.
If your cycles are 28 days and you want to conceive, it’s helpful to have intercourse anywhere between day 11 and day 14 of the cycle. The highest conception rate occurs four to six hours after ovulation, and at that point the sperm meets your egg.
If you’re wondering, “What does fertile mean?” or when you are fertile, the answer is found in the actual point of ovulation. This is difficult to predict. If you’re not sure of the major signs, have sex between the 7th and 20th days of your menstrual cycle.
You may be more fertile earlier in the month, or later. It varies from one woman to the next. Give your body (and his) a rest, and only have sex every two to three days. His sperm will be more fertile when they have built up for a couple days. In addition, if you have sex too often, your vagina may build up antibodies to the male sperm.
How do you know if you’re Ovulating and Fertile?
The most plausible way to know when you’re fertile is by understanding your body’s subtle clues. Keeping a journal of all your periods is the best way to do this. Charts also work well.
Watch your body very carefully over one or two months and you’ll be more likely to notice the subtle changes. About five days before you release an egg, you’ll note several signs that ovulation is about to occur.
If you usually have periods each 28 days, note day 1 as being the first period day in your journal or on your chart. Watch your body carefully until days 12 through 17. Notice the changes that start right after your period has ended and make a note of them in the journal.
Here are some different signs of fertility:
Your cycles include the operation of many hormones. They can cause you to be happy and energetic or tired and depressed. In the middle of your cycle, you may notice lots of energy. You may feel confident and sexy. You will enjoy cuddling with your partner at this time and feel like making love more often.
- Physical Signs
You might note back pain, headaches or cramping on one side of your abdomen when you are ovulating.
Your partner might mention that you smell more attractive to him at the time of ovulation. This is a sexy and enticing smell, and makes your partner desire you more, sexually.
- Changes in Body Temperature
Your basal body temp is taken first thing in the morning, even before you get up and start moving around. At the time of ovulation, your temperature drops steeply. It will rise after ovulation. You can chart this pattern after taking your temperature each day for a few months.
- Changes in Cervical Fluid
During your window of fertility, you will note a cervical discharge. It is thin, clear and can be stretched between two fingers.
Kits for fertility prediction can be used for testing during the times you believe yourself to be fertile. It is helpful in recognizing symptoms. These kits seek out the ovulation triggering hormone, known as luteinizing hormone (LH).
Once you have developed an understanding of the meaning of fertility, you can put the knowledge into good practice. If you want to conceive, keep your sexual activity down to every other day or every third day. This allows your partner’s testicles to build up more healthy sperm.