First things, first
With a toddler in tow, finding the time and energy to have sex may be your biggest challenge! ‘Don’t leave sex until 11pm – you’ll be too tired,’ says Dr Wendy Denning. ‘Try going to bed early or going on a date to get in the mood.’ Ovulation test kits can narrow down the best time to try. You can also take your cue from what’s going on down below. ‘Be aware of when you’re having more vaginal secretions, and have sex three or four times a week around this time,’ says fertility guru Zita West.
Be breastfeeding aware…
If you’re still breastfeeding while trying for another baby, you’re much less likely to ovulate and get pregnant (although some women still do). Giving up breastfeeding will maximise your chances of getting pregnant – although of course you’ll want to balance the benefits of doing this with the benefits your child is getting from breastmilk.
Take care of yourself
Remember all the advice you followed on how to get pregnant first time around? Well, it’s still relevant now – just harder to fit in with a toddler on the scene! Give up alcohol, or at least cut right down; quit smoking; minimise stress; eat a healthy balanced diet; maintain a healthy weight; and encourage your partner to do likewise. It’s also good to take 400mcg of folic acid a day from the time you start trying. Specially formulated supplements such as Pregnacare (which include folic acid as well as other beneficial nutrients) are available from most good chemists. Finally, try to resist the temptation to use caffeine as a pick-me-up. Limit coffee and tea to one or two cups a day when trying to get pregnant.
When to see the doctor
If you’re struggling, you’re not alone – one in five couples has problems getting pregnant second time around. Age can be an issue if you had your first baby later in life then waited a few years to try for another. That isn’t to say you won’t conceive, but it may take longer. Medical problems linked to your first pregnancy or birth may be a factor – from thyroid problems to possible Fallopian tube damage if you had a C-section. The important thing is not to get obsessed about potential problems but get checked out if you think there may be issues complicating matters.