When you’re trying for a baby, it’s important to know the best time of your cycle to try and conceive. Some couples need help getting the timing right.

What is Timed Intercourse?

Timed intercourse is a simple treatment to help couples pinpoint their most fertile window. It’s a completely natural approach, and often the starting point of a couple’s fertility journey.

Your fertility specialist will usually do some blood tests, maybe a urine test, and an ultrasound to confirm when you’re due to ovulate.

Ovulation and conceiving

Each month, your body has a menstrual cycle where an egg is released from the ovaries – this is called ovulation. Ovulation occurs (on average) 14 days before the start of your period; however it’s completely normal for women to ovulate (release the egg from the ovaries) anywhere from 12-18 days before their period starts.

Once it is released from the ovary into the fallopian tube, the egg has a maximum of 24 hours to be fertilised.

Sperm can survive in the female reproductive tract for 2-3 days waiting for the egg. By accurately predicting when ovulation will occur, we can advise the right time to have sex to give the best chance of conception.

Your fertility specialist will recommend you don’t have sex for 2-3 days prior to your fertile window to allow the sperm to build up to the best levels for fertilisation.

Help with ovulation

For timed intercourse to be successful, ovulation must occur.

Women who do not ovulate regularly may need medication to make sure ovulation occurs at the predicted time. Your fertility specialist will discuss with you whether medication is needed to induce ovulation.

Monash IVF tip: When you’re ready to get pregnant, it’s a good idea to see a fertility specialist to check out your fertility and make sure you’re in good health.

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