How To Make A Baby (And Enjoy Trying)

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cough medicine
5 unorthodox tips for couples who want to conceive.

From the time we enter adolescence, we're told how not to get pregnant. When we get a bit older, we're told what not to do if we are pregnant. But what should couples be doing if they aren't yet pregnant, but want to be?

For starters, take cough medicine.

So says Heidi Murkoff, author of What to Expect Before You're Expecting (and the entire series of What to Expect books). During an appearance on the CBS Early Show this week, Murkoff explained that there are a variety of unorthodox ways that couples can make baby-making easier. The Pros And Cons Of Procreating After 65

Before we tell what they are, though, let us give you a couple friendly reminders: 1) Since many medical groups now recommend that couples prepare for conception at least three months before even trying, don't expect great results from any of these tips unless you've put them into practice for a few weeks. 2) Remember to have fun. When sex with your partner becomes all about the ends, rather than the means (no pun intended), it's easy to lose track of the fact that it used to be all about each other. Make sure it still is, for your own happiness, as well as your procreational abilities (as stress tends to infringe on fertility).

Now, onto Murkoff's tips:

1. Take cough medicine. As Murkoff explains it: "Expectorants thin mucus in your chest, which is a good thing if you have a cough. But they don't distinguish between different types of mucus in the body. They may also be thinning your cervical mucus, which is easier for sperm to catch a ride in." Just one warning about this: make sure any expectorant you're using is only an expectorant and not an antihistimine, as antihistimines are fertility-unfriendly.

2. Cut back on coffee. Caffiene consumption doesn't just infringe on fertility, it also increases your chances of miscarriage if you do get pregnant. So limit yourself to 12 ounces a day. And keep it down to that amount, as you won't be able to drink any more than that once you're knocked up.

3. Keep the laptop away from your man's lap. As Murkoff puts it: "Anything that overheats that southernmost region on a man can give a cold shower to sperm production. So that could be a laptop, it could be a hot tub, sauna, steam room, or a pair of tighty whities."

4. Make sure your man is staying off the sauce. We know what you're thinking. "But he's so much more fun in bed after a couple sidecars." But listen: not only is a man's equipment less reliable when he's drinking, his sperm count is as well. Alcohol is something both men and women need to cut back on when trying to conceive.

5. Eat oysters. Murkoff explains: "Oysters are the food chain's most concentrated souce of zinc. And zinc is one of nature's most fertile nutrients, in addition to being a libido booster. So, yes, it's true what they say about oysters. They are nature's answer to Viagra, for both sexes in fact."