Natural Conception

There are many factors which affect your probability of pregnancy. Your age, medical conditions, health, lifestyle and other factors all affect your likelihood of conceiving each cycle. You have varying degrees of control over many of these factors. The number one most important factor affecting your chances of conceiving, however, is something that you and your partner can control: the timing and frequency of intercourse in your fertile window.

What is the fertile window?

Your fertile window is made up of the days in your menstrual cycle when pregnancy is possible. The length of this fertile phase is determined by the maximum life span of your partner's sperm and your egg. Sperm can survive a maximum of five days in fertile cervical fluid and your ovum can survive for up to one day. Your theoretical fertile window is thus six days long, comprised of the five days before ovulation and the day of ovulation. You only have a chance to conceive when you have intercourse on these days. This means that pregnancy is technically possible from intercourse on any of these six days. The likelihood of actually becoming pregnant, however, is dramatically increased when you have intercourse in the three days immediately leading up to and including ovulation. This makes a practical fertile window of just three days.