Woman with Heart over Stomach

Raising a child comes with tons of responsibility -- And with that responsibility, come sacrifices that you may have to make along the ride. 

Trying to get pregnant is almost like rolling a pair of dice, just waiting for the lucky day when your pregnancy test is positive. However, you don’t need to leave everything to chance. Instead, you can really take matters into your own hands when trying to conceive a baby. 

Preparing for a healthy pregnancy is extremely important for any mother-to-be. It’s in their nature to not only nurture their child in utero, but to also nurture their own bodies prior to getting pregnant. 

A few smart things to keep in mind when trying to have a baby is safely exercising, taking prenatal vitamins, keeping a healthy diet, and monitoring your menstrual cycle and ovulation

We all know that once your baby is finally born, you’ll be saying goodbye to a lot of things like your usual sleep schedule, your personal space, and your free-time. However, you may not know about the things that you need to say goodbye to and avoid even before your baby is born.  

The do’s and don’ts of pregnancy can be a lot to keep track of. But don’t worry mama, this is your ultimate guide of things to avoid when trying to conceive! 

1. Smoking

Woman and Man Smoking

The risks of smoking aren't limited to only developing lung, colon, and pancreatic cancer. It can also decrease your chances of conceiving a baby and getting pregnant. 

Women who smoke face an increased risk of infertility as they are more likely to reach menopause earlier in their lives. Quitting the habit of smoking will also improve the lining of the womb which will help your chances of getting pregnant. 

Although the threat of women smoking is more clear, men should also avoid smoking. Research suggests that men who smoke may jeopardize the structure and function of their sperm. 

If your partner smokes, not only will that compromise his sperm function, but it also contributes to second-hand smoke, which is also known as passive smoking. Breathing in the smoke from your partner or even friends and family around you can affect your ability to get pregnant.

2. Too Much Alcohol 

Woman's Hand Rejecting More Alcohol

You may want to pass up on that extra bottle of wine at dinner and think twice about going to an all-you-can-drink bar. 

It is well known that drinking is one of the things you should avoid during pregnancy. However, the effects of drinking are less clear when you and your partner are trying to conceive. 

Still, research suggests that women who drink excessive alcohol when sexually active face the risk of increased infertility and also increases the time it takes to actually get pregnant. 

There is no known amount of alcohol intake that is safe when trying to conceive a baby. Therefore, it’s a good idea to stay away from drinking alcohol altogether when you decide you are going to try to get pregnant with your partner.


3. Too Much Caffeine

Woman's Hand Rejecting Coffee

Having to get rid of coffee in your mornings may seem too much to ask for! Don’t worry, you won’t have to get rid of coffee altogether. The only thing to keep in mind is the amount of your daily caffeine intake. 

Drinking less than 200 mg of caffeine a day is completely fine for you to stick to (this is the equivalent of 2 cups of coffee per day). Excessive amounts, however, can increase your chances of infertility and the risk of miscarriage

If coffee is more important to you than caffeine in general, pay attention to different coffee brands. Some coffee brands actually sell coffee with less caffeine levels than others. Also remember that some teas, energy drinks and sodas have caffeine too. 


4. Extreme Exercise

Woman Exercising

Exercise has shown to help you when you’re trying to have a baby, however overexercising will have the opposite effect. Getting into a moderate exercise routine will reduce the time it takes to conceive, whereas a high intensity exercise routine will take a longer time to conceive. 

Getting about 150 minutes of moderate exercise a day is best for your overall health and pregnancy results. If you aren’t used to being active for this long throughout your day, try to start off slow and work your way up to your goal. 

Separate from working out, you can also find other physical activities that interests you and caters to your health standards. This will not only keep your body in check but will also help you deal with stress, keeping your mind happy and healthy.


5. BPA Exposure

Bisphenol-A (BPA) has shown to be a threat to a woman’s fertility. BPA is a chemical that is mainly found in household products such as plastic bags, bottles and packaging. 

Once you actually get pregnant and have your baby running around the house, you’ll definitely want to baby proof your home to reduce the risk of your baby getting hurt. However, it’s a good idea to start avoiding harmful products from the time you decide you are trying to get pregnant.

Research has shown that infertile women are found to have higher BPA levels in their blood. The chemicals interfere with the hormones that are related to your reproductive system. 


The Big Picture 

Of course, you’ll be going through a lot of changes from the moment you decide you want to have a baby, to the moment your baby is in your arms. 

Even though it can be scary, stressful, and slightly unenjoyable when giving up the things that you love, it’ll all be worth it in the end!