Many patients share their anguish when it comes to ‘baby making sex’. You know the kind? It is all about the prize but not the ride…. The kind that begin with good intimate intentions, but that quickly take a turn toward the ‘hurry up and get this over with because it’s the third time in three days and I’m OVER it” kind of sex.
With fertility rates on what appears to be some rapid decline, we have all had the crapola scared out of us, leading our poor minds to think that perhaps nobody makes a baby naturally these days. And we could be forgiven for thinking this way because we seem to be hearing of so many couples who are finding it painfully hard to naturally fall pregnant.
The biggest mistake I see couples make in the natural fertility game, is to confine their timing to what they believe is their ‘ovulatary window.’ This can be a trap for several reasons.
Firstly, we don’t all ovulate at the same time. Timing of ovulation can be quite confusing, which adds complication. Secondly, by limiting the amount of intimate time we spend limits the amount of exercise our reproductive organs receive. An athlete does not limit their training day to one day a month and your reproductive organs shouldn’t be any different. They need all the exercise they can get if they are to win the baby making race. This means exercising them the entire month around, to increase blood flow to the pelvic cavity, to nourish and condition the reproductive area. Also by increasing blood flow, we are nourishing the area with what it needs to work best. If a woman has already ovulated, intercourse in the later part of the cycle is essential to help feed the growing embryo as it imbeds into the endomentrium and feeds off adequate blood supply. This is especially appropriate for couples going through IVF – the same rules apply in the need to the reproductive organs to be getting all the oxygen and blood supply they can.
Women who report some level of discomfort in at the period time can also benefit from this practice – increasing activity through the lower abdomen can be a wonderful period pain solver. By having plenty of regular sex, we reduce chances of ‘missing’ ovulation. We cover all bases, we have well nourished reproductive parts and well, everybody is happy (most likely daddy included). The pressure of getting everything ‘right’ can be so intense, we can fail in every other aspect of the baby making check list.
Men who have issues with their semen most benefit from regular sex (a fact that most men want to jump the room and thank me for adding). As we treat this in the clinic (I don’t remember the last time I saw a good semen analysis), one of the most important aspects of treatment is lots of regular intercourse. Abnormal and sluggish sperm need to be shipped on out to make way for the new and great quality semen we have been working hard to treat. It takes up to four months (minimum three months) to treat semen, which demonstrates to me that nobody can have too much sex and it affect sperm quality and quantity. I say this because many have been lead to believe they need to ‘save it up’ so that the quality is best at the time they so need it. You see, the more that is ejaculated (in frequency), the more room you make! So being busy between the sheets is one of the best ways to improve it and see quickest change in results. Whilst men generally have a higher libido, those with semen issues often don’t. By adding regular bedroom activity, we can also see a shift – the more you get the more you want – see I keep everybody happy! Again, couples in IVF also need to consider semen quality – the better the numbers, the better your chances of success. If you want to know more about making great sperm you might like to read here and here.
Some of us shudder at the thought of switching off the phone, the TV, and stepping away from the laptop because we wouldn’t know what to do with ourselves (I’m just as guilty) when we finally get home from work, rush through dinner, and collapse into bed – before starting again. Slap into this diary “time to make a baby” – where does it fit in? This just adds to the stress of the daily routine. If you’re an regular reader, I often write about how everyday stressors contribute to lower fertility levels. It seems like a vicious circle. So how is this for an idea? Let’s just come back to the idea of sex again – how about having intimate time as a couple, not for the purpose of making a baby? What about removing the ‘baby making’ factor which we know crushes a lot of the intimacy. How about we get back into practice of regular intimacy between two people who love each other? What about regular sex ‘just because?’ What about no TV or internet, for an early night spent under the covers? This is the kind of sex that makes babies. The unplanned, loving, intimate time a couple spend together with one purpose – of just enjoying each other. Reality is, once the baby comes a long, you have all the time in the world to worry about the child, what the child needs and what the child should and shouldn’t be doing – best leave that for outside mummy and daddy time and get back to enjoying being a couple.
So coming back to the original question – how much sex do you need to make a baby? Honestly – not much, because the real question is about how much sex do you need to be healthy? How much do you need to be physically and mentally nourished ? That is the recipe for making babies. Should you want a rough estimate – the answer is lots.