Trying for a baby can take the enjoyment out of sex - here's how to prevent that from happening
In theory, a happy and healthy sex life should be all that's needed to conceive.
Yet with one in seven couples in the UK alone struggling to conceive naturally , there are no iron-clad guarantees the journey to parenthood will go smoothly.
Once the decision to start a family has been made, the stakes seem high. What was once an enjoyable sex life can sometimes fall casualty to the pressure couples put on themselves.
Suddenly sex is tiresome and stressful.
"Sex is a fundamental part of relationships, with its purpose not just for couples who are aiming to get pregnant," Dr Kim Clugston, Fertility Expert at DuoFertility Mobile explains.
Dr Clugston has shared her wisdom with MirrorOnline about how to keep the romance alive while trying for a baby.
Sex is a fundamental part of a relationship
1. Don't see sex as a chore
Sex becoming a chore when trying to get pregnant can happen to any couple really.
For many couples particularly those who have been trying to conceive for a long time, often years, maintaining frequent sex each cycle can prove challenging.
Having sex on demand can take the spontaneity and romance out of the equation. When couples are not trying for a baby, sex can often be spontaneous to create the element of excitement and this is often lost when the focus is on the need to have sex for conception.
Sex can become a 'chore' when the stakes are high
2. The difference in the sexes
Women we speak to often talk about how difficult they find having regular sex and at the end of each cycle.
When there is no positive outcome this can cause stress in the relationship, which can ultimately lead to less sex and less sex will reduce the chance of success even more.
Both men and women can be affected, but in fact, more commonly we hear from women that their partners feel the pressure of having to 'perform on demand.'
Dr Clugston says many men feel as if they're 'performing on demand' (Photo: Getty)
3. Consider your fertile window
In terms of only trying to conceive, once ovulation has occurred there is no need to continue with sex.
Although, having sex outside the fertile window can maintain the feeling of sex for pleasure rather than for baby making which can be important for a couple, to ensure that sex just doesn't become about making a baby.
4. The big 'O'
There is no evidence to suggest that you need an orgasm to get pregnant.
Although it is thought that when a woman orgasms, this increases uterine contractions which may help to retain sperm after ejaculation to give a better chance of sperm meeting egg.
Orgasm not needed
5. Every couple is different
Every couple will deal with the pressure of baby making differently.
Some men want to get more involved with the process by tracking the woman’s cycle together so they are both aware when they need to try.
Other men need to be shielded from this aspect as much as possible as the knowledge of having to perform at specific times causes too much pressure.
No one knows each other better than the couple and you need to find ways to help you both work out the best solution for you.
Each couple will deal with it differently
6. The highest chance of success
The evidence suggests that frequent sex every one to two days leads to the highest success, but not every couple can maintain this frequency every cycle.
The most important advice is to choose a pattern that works best for both of you as a couple.
Couples may find it helpful to track the woman’s cycle with fertility clues or monitors that work for them to pinpoint their fertile time more efficiently.