The decision to have a baby is a big one. It takes a lot to come to that point with your partner, and to make up your mind to go ahead with it. As big as the decision is, it requires an equally big list of things to prep before you even begin trying to conceive. Today, let’s take a look at that list and understand what all needs to be done and how a couple can go about it.
Before you even begin trying to conceive, you should visit your doctor and ideally get a proper checkup done. Apart from a thorough checkup, it is suggested that you clear all your doubts too. The doctor will check you for diseases that can be passed on to the child and suggest vaccines for the likes of Rubella and Chickenpox. He will also check for chronic conditions like asthma, diabetes, and the likes, and suggest medication to tackle those. You will also need to get your current medications, if any, checked in case it hampers your fertility in anyway.
While you are at the doctor’s, it is advisable to properly learn how the entire process really happens. It will better your understanding of the dos and don’ts of conception. Plus, it’ll just make things easier for you and your partner when you’re actually trying to conceive.
Have a parenting talk with your partner. How you want to raise the child, what all you need to do for the child, the religious traditions, and all such trivial matters. You will change your mind over time, especially after the child is born. But it is good to be on the same page for most things beforehand, in order to avoid any complications later. The finer details will fall in place over time anyway. It is also advisable to talk to your parents, your friends who are neo-parents, and even the ones who have teenage kids, to get a fair idea of how parenting worked for different people. How they dealt with problems, if any, and how they worked it all out.
A child and her/his life up till graduation or even post-graduation is your responsibility. Though you don’t need to save for college right away, you need to have a decent amount kept aside for early expenses like diapers, clothes and the baby accessories. For the future, you will need a fair bit of planning on the finance front. Sit down with your partner, take stock of savings, expenses, and the road ahead. Sort out the big and essential expenses first, and work downwards from there.
This is stating the obvious, but go off the pill or any other contraceptive method you’ve been using. Go off those things at least two months before you start trying to conceive so that your body, especially your reproductive system and menstrual cycle, gets enough time to get back to normalcy. It will also give you enough time to note when you ovulate and when you are most fertile.
Your ob-gyn will suggest that both of you take some prenatal supplements to increase your chances of conceiving. These supplements include nutrients like folic acid, multivitamins, iodine, iron, vitamin D3 for the female; and Ubiquinol, Conenzyme Q10, Zinc, Selenium, Vitamin D, for the male. Make sure your doctor recommends the right dosage for both of you.
Having a healthy weight is essential right from conception to delivery. If you are underweight or overweight, get to working towards getting in the normal weight range. Get some exercises into your everyday life too. A fitter body will perform better, both during conceiving as well as during delivery. It’ll also make it easier for you to get back in shape after delivery.
If either of you is a smoker or a heavy drinker, now is as good a time as any to go cold turkey on the cigarettes, alcohol and any drugs that you might be used to. It has been proven that all of those things slow down or majorly affect the conception process. So, why wait till you’re pregnant? The sooner you quit, the easier it will be later on. The same goes for caffeine. Not only coffee, but energy drinks and other such products too.
The first step of parenthood is ensuring your baby’s health above everything else. Follow these tips and pursue a healthy, wholesome lifestyle diligently – it’ll benefit the whole family!