Update your vaccinations
Doctors may screen for chickenpox immunity, rubella immunity, or hepatitis B immunity, among other conditions. Healthcare providers recommend updating any vaccination records at least one month before getting pregnant. Some vaccines, such as measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) or the hepatitis A vaccines, can increase genetic disability risks, so allow plenty of time to get immunizations updated before pregnancy.
Manage underlying conditions
Women with preexisting health conditions need to understand how to manage the condition throughout pregnancy. For example, women who have high blood pressure, asthma, or diabetes may need to change medications or lifestyle habits to get the disease under control before conceiving. Some of these conditions can increase the risks of pregnancy complications.
While reviewing medical conditions, women should also go over all current medications with a healthcare provider. Some drugs, such as certain antidepressants or anti-anxiety medications, are not safe to take during pregnancy. Ask the healthcare provider about substitute options before getting pregnant.
Discuss birth control and menstrual cycles
Many women wonder how long getting pregnant will take after stopping birth control. Be sure to discuss this with a healthcare provider. The healthcare provider will also ask about menstrual cycle length and whether or not a woman has regular periods. This information will help healthcare providers understand whether a woman needs any tips for when to try to conceive or any help boosting fertility.
Consider diet and lifestyle
Certain habits, like drinking and smoking, are a clear no-no during pregnancy. A healthcare provider may also offer guidance on diet, exercise habits, and sleep hygiene. All of these factors can help boost a woman’s fertility. Likewise, learning to manage stress effectively can impact how easily a woman can get pregnant.
Consider family history
The family tree of both partners can inform healthcare providers about specific pregnancy risks and concerns. For example, if the family history shows a pattern of preeclampsia, breast cancer, or type 2 diabetes, these are all risk factors a healthcare provider will consider. Additionally, let the healthcare provider if the family history shows any twin trends since multiples can run in the family. For more information about health screenings and conception, speak with a healthcare provider.