More than 7 million Americans of childbearing age have fertility problems; that’s one in six couples trying to conceive. If you are among them, it helps to know what you’re up against. Hence, this short quiz to test your knowledge on the subject. Don’t worry: you won’t be graded. The answers appear at the end. Good luck.
- True or False: Since men make sperm throughout their lives, age is a fertility issue only for women.
- True or False: Sperm can survive up to three days in the female reproductive tract.
- True or False: A couple has about a 15% better chance of getting pregnant if the woman is upside down during intercourse.
- True or False: A woman who is underweight or over-exercised can have as hard a time getting pregnant as a woman who is obese.
- True or False: According to studies, only about 20% of couples seeking infertility treatments time their intercourse on the most advantageous days.
- True or False: Eating ready-to-eat breakfast cereals, asparagus, and cooked lentils can help a couple get pregnant.
- True or False: The best place and time for having sexual intercourse to increase your chances of pregnancy: outside during the afternoon.
- True or False: Coffee, like alcohol, has a detrimental effect on a woman’s menstrual cycle.
- True or False: Clinical studies have shown that acupuncture treatments can actually help a woman get pregnant.
- True or False: Two-thirds of couples who are treated for infertility go on to have babies.
- False. As men age, their sperm count naturally decreases. Sperm quality and motility also decrease. About a third of the time, a couple’s infertility problems are caused by the man.
- True. Sperm start swimming immediately after ejaculation, but some can live as long as three days within the female body. You should still time your intercourse for the most favorable time when trying to conceive.
- False. Regardless how flexible you are, experts agree that the position during intercourse makes no difference in your odds of getting pregnant. Remaining prone for several minutes after sex, however, may increase the likelihood that healthy sperm can find your egg.
- True, although results vary from woman to woman. Women generally need at least 22% body fat for normal ovulation. Doctors consider a body mass index (BMI) between 19 and 25 ideal. It’s relatively easy to adjust your lifestyle to resolve this issue.
- True. The most critical factor in getting pregnant is knowing when a woman is ovulating. The fertile period usually lasts six days: the day of ovulation and the five days before it. Learn to recognize the signs of fertility.
- True. Studies have shown that these foods (and others high in folic acid) help prevent birth defects and can increase a man’s sperm count.
- False. There is no proof that having intercourse in a particular place or during a particular time of day makes any difference in getting pregnant. The only time that definitely does make a difference is having intercourse when the woman is fertile.
- False. While drinking alcohol may lead to irregular menstrual cycles and even birth defects, there is no conclusive proof that caffeine has any effect on a woman’s ability to get pregnant.
- True. Acupuncture has proven to have therapeutic effects, such as removing stress from and moving energy around your body. No one really knows exactly how it works, although one theory is that it releases chemicals and hormones that help set the stage for pregnancy.
- True! So if you’re having fertility troubles, don’t wait. You can become one of the many couples helped by fertility clinics like Fertility Specialists Medical Group.