Kids are adorable. Whether you’ve already got a brood or the whole family-planning thing is years down the road, read up on these common myths about getting pregnant.
MYTH: IF YOU HAVE SEX 14 DAYS AFTER YOUR PERIOD, YOU’LL PROBABLY GET PREGNANT
The truth: This would be more accurate in a perfect world in which your cycle is consistently 28 days. For the majority of women, though, that’s not the case. Don’t place all your–ahem–eggs in that one day-14 basket. (And don’t assume you’re safe from pregnancy on, say, day 22.)
MYTH: IF YOU CONCEIVED YOUR FIRST BABY EASILY, SUBSEQUENT BABIES SHOULD BE EASY, TOO
The truth: Not so much. Your body is constantly changing, meaning that barriers to conception can pop up at any time. On the flip side, some women who had trouble conceiving the first time around find it easier to get pregnant with babies two and three. It’s really a body-by-body situation.
MYTH: AS LONG AS YOU’RE UNDER 35, YOU SHOULD BE VERY FERTILE
The truth: It’s true that a woman’s fertility begins to sharply decrease after she turns 35, but that’s not to say all younger women are able to conceive quickly and easily. Women typically have the highest-quality eggs in their 20s, but factors like tubal issues and low sperm count could make it harder to conceive at any age.
MYTH: YOU NEED TO ORGASM TO MAKE A BABY
The truth: Female orgasm could aid in conception, but it isn’t necessary. The idea is that it helps in contracting your uterus, which allows for sperm to travel through the fallopian tube faster. But you certainly can get pregnant without, you know, getting to cloud nine.
MYTH: DRINKING ALCOHOL WILL HURT YOUR FERTILITY
The truth: Not unless you’re drinking an excessive amount. Drinking too much and too often could make your cycle irregular (which could hurt your chances of conceiving). But a few glasses of wine here and there shouldn’t really have an effect.
MYTH: BEING ON TOP AIDS IN CONCEPTION
The truth: The theory is that certain positions give sperm a better shot at making it to an egg. But–and we’ll go ahead and get technical here–most women’s cervical mucus is efficient enough to get the job done no matter the position.
MYTH: HAVING SEX EVERY DAY INCREASES YOUR ODDS OF CONCEIVING
The truth: If it doesn’t coincide with ovulation, it doesn’t matter how many times you have sex. In general, having sex every other day whileyou’re ovulating helps increase your chances of getting pregnant. Also, guys have a finite number of sperm, so after a certain point (like if you’re having sex every day), they’re pretty much just shooting blanks.
MYTH: IF YOU GET PREGNANT EARLIER IN YOUR CYCLE, YOU’RE MORE LIKELY TO HAVE A GIRL
The truth: Sorry, folks. When it comes to traditional baby-making, you can’t control gender. If you’re going the IVF route, though, you can go through a process known as nonmedical sex selection, which allows you to choose your baby’s sex. (But where’s the fun in that anyway?)