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Sex & Relationships

Is a baby on your Christmas wish list? Tips on how to get pregnant

Sex therapist Dr. Teesha Morgan has tips to increase your chance of conceiving with the best sexual positions and the big O (yours!)
By Dr. Teesha Morgan
Is a baby on your Christmas wish list? Tips on how to get pregnant Masterfile

The holiday season is all about sharing love and laughter with those we call family; and if yours is anything like mine, these precious moments will take the form of long standing debates, too much eggnog and an evening where someone will inevitably fall down the stairs. So why is it that in spite of this usual holiday mayhem, the Christmas season still seems to spark a desire to expand our dysfunctional families? Regardless of our reasoning, storks seem to be pulling double-time in the legwork department, and I’m busy helping couples with the ‘ordering process’. So if you and your partner are waiting patiently in this delivery line, then let me give you a few helpful tips that will assist you in getting exactly what you order.

Many couples ask me if there are certain sex positions that will help increase their chances of conceiving. In all honesty, the position only matters if you find that one is better able to help the female partner orgasm over another. Having an orgasm can significantly increase the chance of fertilization, since the orgasm-induced, contracting vaginal muscles help to push the sperm upwards towards the eggs; A research study, conducted by sexual biologist Robin Baker, concluded that a female orgasm that climaxes at any time between one minute before the male ejaculation and up to 45 minutes after, leads to a high level of sperm retention.

Working against gravity can be tough for sperm, however, so any help you can give the little swimmers to get them flowing in the right direction – such as not standing up right away, which causes much of the semen to fall downwards – is always an added bonus. Positions that can aid the sperm in their travels to the ovum the best, due to the direction gravity leads them, would be the missionary position with the woman's legs lifted slightly in the air – such as wrapped around her partner's waist – or doggy style with the woman resting on her elbows.

Many couples also find that because they are having sex more often, and on specific days regardless if they are in the mood, intimacy can suffer. To counter this try to separate romance from sex on some occasions, showing your partner romantic gestures throughout the week that do not result in intercourse.

When trying to conceive it is obviously beneficial to learn your cycle so you know which days you are ovulating, and therefore which days you should be having sex. What you may not know however, is that research claims that if you want a pink bundle of joy, you should avoid having sex on days immediately prior to or after ovulation. Scientists claim that the sperm carrying the female gene is much stronger and last longer then the sperm carrying the faster, but shorter-lived, male gene. Therefore if a female baby is desired, sex should be avoided around ovulation when the male sperm may be more dominant.

According to a new study from Maastricht University in Holland, our diet may also have a dramatic effect on the sex of your child. Previous tests on women who have only given birth to boys have shown that their diets have contained mainly potassium and sodium rich foods (such as bacon, salami, prawns, potatoes, processed meats, bread and pastries). So researchers designed a diet for pregnant women who desired baby girls, which contained high amounts of calcium and magnesium (foods containing large quantities of magnesium, including brazil and cashew nuts, whole wheat cereals, figs and beans). The results of the test were staggering – the success rate was close to 80 percent.

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So what does all this research tell us? That if you’re pining after a healthy baby boy or girl you better watch the clock, watch your diet, and tell him to give the Mrs a little extra effort between the sheets. Or you could just depend on the stork to get it right. I heard they fly fast, but their aim isn’t always the greatest.

Dr. Teesha Morgan is a sex therapist based in Vancouver.

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