Trying to Conceive

The myths and truths of gender swaying

Can you really influence your baby's gender at conception?

Brooke Tasovac Here are a few popular methods hopeful parents-to-be use to try to get a baby of their preferred gender – and what an expert says about whether they really work.

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Why dads-to-be should quit smoking, too

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Armin Brott A lot of men put off quitting - or asking their partners to quit - out of fear that withdrawal might lead to some marital tension. Bad choice.

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When a friend's baby joy is a painful reminder

Celebrating a friend's pregnancy can be difficult if you are struggling to conceive.

Melody McCabe It can be difficult to celebrate other people's pregnancies when you are struggling to conceive.

Dealing with the emotional impact of infertility

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Melody McCabe I’m generally a pretty positive person, but I’m battling with my infertility. It was time I saw a counsellor about how I was coping - or not coping - with it all.

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What is the best age to have a baby?

COSIMA MARRINER We speak to mothers in their 20s, 30s and 40s to find out the answer.

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Danish couples told to take a holiday and make a baby to win a prize

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LETITIA ROWLANDS A Danish travel company has come up with a unique way to tackle their nation's falling fertility rate.

The man's role while trying to conceive

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Justin McCabe I honestly can think of nothing that kills the passion and excitement more than Excel intercourse. Thermometers, graphs and demands of performance put a lot of stress on everyone - including us men.

'Egg yolk' treatment ends mum's miscarriage heartbreak

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LETITIA ROWLANDS Lorraine Donakey thought she might never become a mum after six miscarriages. But after undergoing a new treatment which involves the use of a substance containing egg yolk, she now has a healthy baby girl.

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Asking the hard questions when trying to conceive

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Melody McCabe A poignant moment on holidays, 13 months after we started trying to have a baby, has got me thinking about the hard conversations that lay ahead.

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8 reasons why having kids is awesome

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VICTORIA BIRCH If you’re looking for some reproductive benefits, avoid parenting blogs. If you’d like to create a mini you it’s not all excretions of bodily fluids. There are some brilliant upsides to this kid business.

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Some lubricants could harm conception chances: study

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Ronnie Cohen Couples trying to conceive may want to avoid using certain common sexual lubricants, which a new study says can reduce the chances of pregnancy.

Why don't we talk about infertility?

Greer Berry When you talk about infertility, you're essentially talking about your sex life, your internal organs, the state of your relationship. But I think we need to talk about it more, not less.

The myth of the 12-month referral wait

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Greer Berry It's now 2014. I thought I would have had a baby or at least be pregnant by now. But at least I'm now rounding the first corner, rather than still waiting to line-up at the start line.

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Dads need folate too: new study discovers importance of male diet in preventing birth defects

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Good Living Lynne Mullins Dishes Pic of the the Mandarin, pistachio and Herb Salad Friday the 20th of July 2012 Feature SMH Picture by FIONA MORRIS 

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LETITIA ROWLANDS Men, as well as women, need to have adequate intake of the important vitamin B9 (folate) before conception to ensure the health of their future children.

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Fit dads can help kids avoid obesity

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LARISSA NICHOLSON Men who are slim and healthy when their children are conceived could be helping generations of offspring avoid obesity.

Being a parent is a privilege

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There are times during the trying-to-conceive journey when things seem unfair. You just can't help but look at situations sometimes and wonder how things happen the way they do.

A man's view of the TTC journey

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Justin McCabe His wife blogs regularly about their journey of trying to conceive, but this time it's Justin McCabe's turn to share how he feels about the monthly tests and their impact on their relationship.

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Bacon bad, fish good for sperm

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Spectrum Dining Review Breakfast at the Opera Bar at the Opera House in Sydney Pic of the Eggs on sourdough, poached or fried, bacon, tomato Saturday the 27th of July 2013 Feature SMH Picture by FIONA MORRIS 

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Laura Donnelly Researchers have identified a few dietary changes that could help improve sperm count.

The weird and wonderful history of the pregnancy test

From Ancient Egyptian agricultural trials to Hippocrates' honey tests, and the 'Piss Prophets' of the Middle Ages through to today's digital versions, pregnancy tests have come a very long way.

Trying to relax while trying to conceive

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Melody McCabe I'm getting into the right frame of mind to give up the charting, to just "relax", while trying to fall pregnant. It’s just not up to me and thinking about it has gotten absolutely exhausting.

Video: Baby timing

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In the fifth episode of the Essential Baby/Elevit with Iodine ‘Conception Series’, we ask the question: is there really an ‘ideal’ time to have a baby?

Video: The road to conception

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In the sixth and final episode six of the Essential Baby/Elevit with Iodine ‘Conception Series’, we look at the difficulties that can come our way on our journey to parenthood.

Study: Supplements can improve sperm count

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Michelle Robinson Men could do a lot to help their partners conceive by taking nutrition supplements, but it's not as simple for women, new research shows.

Free download: Elevit's Guide to Conceiving

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Falling pregnant is one of the most exciting things that can happen to a couple. But sometimes the process can be difficult, so Elevit has created a guide to help you along the way.

Video: Old wives' tales and fertility

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In episode four of our ‘Conception Series’, we look at the stories you’ll hear when you’re trying to fall pregnant, and how to tell fertility facts from fiction.

Is parenthood really that bad?

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Melody McCabe Melody McCabe looks on the bright side as she tries to fall pregnant amid a media landscape filled with parenting doom and gloom.

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Video: Keeping the spark alive

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In episode three of our 'Conception Series’, we look at maintaining relationships while you’re trying to fall pregnant.

Video: Tracking your fertile times

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If you’re trying to make the most of that small monthly window of opportunity to fall pregnant, it’s a great idea to learn how to keep track of your most fertile times.

The ABC of TTC

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Melody McCabe As if trying to get pregnant isn't difficult enough, there is a whole language of acronyms out there to get your head around too. Let me (try) to explain.

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My complicated relationship with pregnancy tests

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Melody McCabe Anyone who is trying to conceive will tell you that the companies that make pregnancy tests must make a fortune.

When everyone else is pregnant but you

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Melody McCabe Fertility counsellor Megan Downer says feelings of grief when trying to conceive are not unusual. Here's what you can do about them.

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SPONSORED FEATURE

Video: Making healthy lifestyle changes for conception

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From pre-pregnancy cleanses to giving up some of our less-than-healthy habits, there's a lot to think about before trying to conceive a baby.

Shhh, we don't want to hear it

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Melody McCabe I've heard a lot of ‘advice’ as I try to fall pregnant, but honestly, I don't want to hear it. Here's what people like me would like to hear and experience instead.

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Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS): the facts

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Staff writers Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) can impact dramatically on a woman's health - especially her fertility. Here are the symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of PCOS in pregnancy.

Myth busting

Can you influence your baby's gender?

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Monique Robinson The Shettles Method, the Chinese lunar calendar, following a special diet ... do any of these actually influence your baby's gender? We look at the research to find out.

Things I'm thankful for after my miscarriages

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Hannah Cherry I’ve come to realise there are positives in negatives - even in repeat miscarriages. So here are the things I'm grateful for.

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The road to conception

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Dr Debra Kennedy, clinical geneticist When it comes to conception and fertility, old wives’ tales and myths abound. Here are some truths and down-to-earth advice from Australian clinical geneticist Dr Debra Kennedy.

Organising now makes it fun later

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Sponsored feature Candy Jubb is former country police officer who retired from law enforcement to lay down the law at home. A mum of seven who also blogs, she shares her advice on gettibng organised before you have a baby.

Putting the fun back into conceiving

Steph Bond Hutkin

Spsonsored feature Steph Bond-Hutkin enjoys a busy family life with her husband and two young daughters. Here, she shares her tips on how to make trying for a baby fun.

Celebrate your relationship

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Sponsored feature For Kelly Burstow, having a baby was about celebrating something she and her husband already had: love. Here are some of her ideas for investing in your relationship while trying tor a baby.

Making a baby is as fun as sex

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Sponsored feature Jody Armstrong lives on the NSW South coast, where she blogs about life as a mum - and her current pregnancy. Here, she shares her tips for conceiving.

An L-shape to success

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Sponsored feature What's the secret to making babies? According to the parents of Fig & Cherry blogger Christie Connelly, it needs to be hot ... and one of you has to try very hard.

Should people with depression reproduce? I did

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Shannon Chapman I was certain I wouldn’t have kids because of my depression, right up until the day the biological clock kicked in and demanded I make babies immediately. I rolled the dice twice, and some would say I lost one time out of two: my eldest son has depression.

What is my luteal phase?

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Knowing the length of your luteal phase allows you to more accurately predict at what point in your cycle ovulation occurs - and makes getting pregnant easier.

Fertility is not infinite

Prue Corlette

Prue Corlette Sex-ed may have taught us how to avoid pregnancy, but not once was it mentioned that if you wanted kids, you better get cracking before 35.

Nicole Kidman opens up on pregnancy struggles as she reveals appreciation for surrogate mother

Nicole Kidman

After a "roller-coaster ride" with fertility problems, Oscar-winning actress Nicole Kidman says she feels love for the woman who carried her second child.

Kylie's feeling broody

Kylie Minogue

Kylie Minogue is keen to start a family of her own, and says she has considered "various options" to help her fall pregnant.

Sexual positions for conceiving

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When it comes to conception there is a lot of discussion about successful positions for ‘making babies’. Unfortunately there is no widely-accepted ‘best position’ but here are some answers to common questions surrounding the act of conceiving.

Life gets tough for big daddy's little girl

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Deborah Smith Men may have to rethink that extra hamburger and chips for the sake of the health of their unborn daughters. New research reveals that a father's high-fat diet can lead to diabetes in his female offspring.

Conception - the facts

Conception

Prior to conception, an egg was released from one of your ovaries and began to travel down the fallopian tube. At the moment of conception, one of your partner's sperm met, entered and fertilised your egg, which then sealed itself off to exclude all other sperm.

Tools

Conception App

Download our FREE Ovulation Calendar; EB EggTimer iphone app to track and record your cycle, symptoms, & temperature.

Ovulation Calculator

Increase your chances of getting pregnant by determining when you are most fertile with Essential Baby's Ovulation Calculator.

Forums

Discuss conception with EB members!

Are you thinking about trying to conceive (TTTC) or trying to conceive (TTC)? Perhaps you're after information on assisted conception or donors? Ask for tips or help others in the Essential Baby conception forums.

Resources

Sexual positions for conceiving

When it comes to conception there is a lot of discussion about successful positions for ‘making babies’. Unfortunately there is no widely-accepted ‘best position’ but here are some answers to common questions surrounding the act of conceiving.

Tot meets his heroes, falls apart with excitement

Two-year-old Quincy finished his potty training last week, and as part of his reward he was able to meet his idols.

Beautiful in our eyes: Georgia's story

I will never deny the fact that grief has a place when you give birth to a child who brings a set of circumstances very different to what you imagined. Because for nine months, I thought I knew my Georgie.

'It's been phenomenal': widower dad of quads thankful for support

There was nothing Erica and Carlos wanted more than a baby.

Vin Diesel names daughter after actor Paul Walker

The actor said there was "no other person" he was thinking about when he chose the name.

How midwives can help women who experience domestic violence

More than half of women who live with abusive partners experience violence during pregnancy.

Mum describes giving birth during Cyclone Pam

A new mother was told she must flee Port Vila hospital with her baby as Cyclone Pam bore down.

6 signs you're done having babies

There were a few signs I'm never going back to the land of maternity jeans, breast pumps and bassinets.

Marta Dusseldorp reveals breastfeeding cost her an acting job

Australian actress Marta Dusseldorp has revealed she was forced to withdraw from a Sydney Theatre Company production because a director did not approve of her breast feeding.

Female celebs (or their babies) with traditionally male names

Looking for a name that's a little bit different for a girl? Turn to names that have been traditionally used for males, as these celebs (or their parents) did.

'If you're anti-immunisation ... take a look at this picture of my son'

Greg Hughes is "an absolute shell of a man" as he and his wife Catherine struggle to come to terms with the loss of their newborn son Riley to whooping cough.

How an extrovert can raise an introvert

Introverts are often misunderstood as shy, and sometimes even rude. A timid child can be difficult to build rapport with, but it's important we nurture their sensitive natures.

Sheryl Sandberg's advice

'Choreplay': Help out at home to get more sex, Sandberg tells men

Forget foreplay. The new and improved route to intercourse is "choreplay" - it's good for your spouse, good for your house, and comes with the imprimatur of feminist du jour Sheryl Sandberg.

How to play with your baby

The first time your child learns a new skill at playtime is very exciting - for both you and your baby! Play is important to your child's development for a variety of reasons - here are some simple ideas for you to try at home.

I'm a single mother by choice

For me, being the best mother I can be means being a mum alone, at least for now. Thinking of my friends with inadequate partners, I wonder why more people don’t choose single motherhood.

Awkward wedding photos

Weird poses, surprise photobombs, bizarre editing: these are the wedding photos that should have never seen the light of day.

Four-week-old baby Riley Hughes dies of whooping cough

The mother of a four-week-old Perth baby who died after contracting whooping cough says her family has been left devastated by the loss of her "gorgeous, sweet" son.

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, we are giving away five DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Oh boy! Video shows family's reaction to baby surprise

Little Peyton Williams thought she was getting a baby sister named Charlee. But the two-year-old has had to settle for a doll dressed in pink after her baby "sister" turned out to be a boy.

How to help build up your baby's immune system

We all know that having a strong immune system is the best way to stay healthy – but what can we do to help it along?

'Nick, you need to call an ambulance': home birth mum's tragic death

A Melbourne mum who died after the home birth of her baby pleaded with her husband to call an ambulance because she felt she was going to die, the Victorian Coroners Court has heard.

When dads believe their baby doesn't 'like' them

Q: My two-month-old baby doesn't like me. He's perfectly content with my wife, but when I try to hold him, he gets upset and cries. I've backed off a little, thinking that he just needs a little time to get used to me, but that doesn't seem to be working. I'm starting to think I'm just not a very good dad. Is it too late for me to build a relationship with my baby?

When was the last time a stranger praised your parenting?

Wouldn’t it be great to get some nice feedback every now and then? After all, everyone likes to hear positive praise, particularly when it comes to parenting.

Special Ticket Offer, Save $8!

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is back this April! Save $8 off the door price for a limited time only!

15 names on the verge of extinction

If you're looking to revive an older name, or don’t want anything near the top 1000 list, check out these rare monikers for your unique baby.

5 characteristics of great dads

It’s great to see a generation of dads who are more actively involved with caring, nurturing and loving their kids.

Why doesn't Australia have more breast milk banks?

When there’s no question that milk banks are important, why don’t we have more of them in Australia?

Carrie Bickmore announces birth of daughter

Television personality Carrie Bickmore has given birth to her second child.

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Sign up to our 30 days of #PlayIQ challenge

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Man faces jail after giving woman abortion pill smoothie

A Norwegian man is facing jail after putting abortion pills in his ex-girlfriend's smoothie, causing her to have a miscarriage.

'He's a blessing': family of baby born without eyes

Jordy Jackson was born without eyes. He has anophthalmia, which affects one in every 100,000 babies born.

Win one of 5 Cadbury Easter Hampers

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Super fit model Sarah Stage defends her pregnancy body

Model Sarah Stage has defended her pregnancy body after critics claimed her slim figure at eight-and-a-half months pregnant wasn't "normal".

Win a Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom and Peppa Pig prize pack

To celebrate the April 1 release of Holly's Magic Wand on DVD and Digital, Essential Baby and Entertainment One are giving away five bumper DVD packs featuring the newest installment of Ben & Holly's Little Kingdom Holly's Magic Wand and many more hours of family entertainment! Enter Now!

Why I post breastfeeding photos online

I love to take pictures of my children. In some of the pictures, my younger son is nursing.

The day I broke my baby

There are things I wish I didn't know. I wish I didn't know that companies make tiny braces, small enough to hold necks no bigger than a wrist.

The place just for dads of multiples

When a couple discovers they're expecting multiples, the dad can sometimes be almost forgotten in all the excitement and preparation. But one group offers a space just for dads of twins and higher-order multiples.

Brave mum calls for domestic violence law reform

A brave mum of two has shared details of the harrowing attacks she suffered at the hands of her partner in a bid to help other victims of domestic violence.

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