Preparing for pregnancy during the coronavirus crisis
22nd April 2020
Preparing for pregnancy is an incredibly exciting time, but it can also be stressful and challenging at times. During the current coronavirus crisis, things have become even harder. Many fertility treatments have been cancelled or postponed, and clinics have been closed. Even couples who are hoping to conceive naturally have had barriers put in their way. We currently don’t fully understand the impact that coronavirus can have on pregnancy and developing babies. For this reason, many health bodies, including the ESHRE have advised a cautionary approach to conception at the time. But, if your pregnancy plans have been put on hold – don’t worry. Lockdown is actually the perfect time to invest in your pre-conception plan! Here are a few ideas for ways you can use this time to improve your chances of conception in the future.
Research Your Options
If you’ve been struggling to conceive and are considering treatment, this downtime is a great opportunity to research your options. Whilst you may not be able to attend appointments, there are a wealth of resources online that can help you. ESHRE is a great source of information that can help you understand the changing situation in regards to coronavirus. The NHS website also goes into detail about each fertility treatment available, so you can decide what might be the best option for you once the crisis is over. If you’re looking for extra support, but struggling to speak with your regular doctor, our experts are here to help. Whether you want to find out more about IVF or have questions about egg freezing, you can contact them from the comfort of your own home, and received trusted answers tailored to your personal circumstances.
Adapt your diet
In the lead up to trying for a baby, eating healthily is one of the most important things you can do. Making positive dietary choices can help prepare your body for pregnancy and improve your chances of conception. There are a bunch of key vitamins that you should aim to make part of your fertility diet plan. These include Omega-3 to promote ovulation and Vitamin D and Zinc for both male and female fertility. You should also increase your consumption of folate (found in leafy greens and folic acid!) to support healthy foetal development. Quarantine is the perfect time to try out new recipes and dedicate some time to experimenting with healthy foods! Learning to enjoy a healthy diet, rather considering it a sacrifice, will help you make changes that are sustainable.
Think about testing
If you are at the very early stages of preconception, now is a good time to get yourself a fertility MOT. Whilst many testing clinics are currently closed, home testing is still an option. The Adia testing kit checks all of the key hormones associated with your reproductive health – AMH, FSH, LH and Prolactin. It also checks your thyroid health, which can be an indicator of potential fertility issues and well as other conditions. Even if you are a few months away from trying for a baby, proactive testing can make a huge difference to your road to becoming a parent. Knowledge really is power when it comes to your fertility journey. Understanding your body early on in the process can help you identify potential issues before they become problems. It also gives you time to make adjustments to your lifestyle where needed.
Get in to exercise
Exercise is an essential part of a preconception plan. Whilst women of all shapes and sizes can struggle with fertility issues, there is research to indicate that if your BMI is too low or too high this can have a negative impact on your chances of conception. Consciously choosing to get moving is more important than ever when your daily activity is being reduced by the lockdown. Whether it’s a gentle yoga session or a fun, online dance class, there are loads of ways you can work out from home during this time. Using your hour of outdoor exercise time to connect with nature can be great for both your physical and mental health. Spending 60 minutes in the sunshine is also a great way to boost your vitamin D!
Nurture your emotional wellbeing
Right now, anxiety is high for everybody, but if you are on the precipice of a fertility journey, or have had your treatment cancelled, you probably have a whole other level of stress to contend with. Stress can have an indirect impact on your chances of conception and can also lead to difficulties for baby and you during pregnancy. We strongly believe that where the mind goes the body will follow, so surrendering to the stillness of lockdown and investing in your mental wellbeing could help you in both the short and long term. From worksheets to journal prompts we have a host of free wellbeing resources to help you find some clam in these difficult times. The Adia platform also has free meditation courses, to help ground you during IVF, get in touch with your cycle or nurture your emotional health.
Would like more support as you prepare for pregnancy? Sign up to Adia for free today to access our meditations, experts and nutrition plans!