Pregnancy is the most exciting, magical nine months of a woman's life. Unfortunately, it takes a while to acheive pregnancy for some. Many woman who have had no luck in conceiving turn to the books and to the internet for advice and to learn about the female reproductive cycle. Much of this information is myth.
1. Infertility is only a problem for females. This has to be one of the most widespread misconceptions. In reality, 40% of the time infertility happens in males. There are many factors that can affect a man's fertility such as sperm count, sperm structure, and sperm movement. Don't think because you aren't conceiving that it is the woman's fault.
2. Ovulation happens on exactly day 14 of a cycle. - This incorrect entirely. Some women may experience ovulation on cycle day 14, but many do not. Ovulation happens due to a gradual rise in estrogen and that process can vary by a couple of days.
3. There is only one day per cycle that a woman can get pregnant. Not true. A human egg is only viable for 12 to 24 hours, but a woman can become pregnant from intercourse that happens from about five days before ovulation to occasionally two days after, for a total of about one week.
4. Sperm can only live for three days. - Wrong. Sperm can survive up to five days in a woman's reproductive tract. That's why there are more days during a woman's cycle she is considered fertile.
5. Stress causes infertility. - Stress does not cause infertility. It can, however, suppress the hormones that cause ovulation to occur causing ovulation to be delayed. Relax.
Any woman who is menstruating is most likely ovulating. It's a good idea for a woman to take prenatal vitamins and maintain a well balanced diet while trying to conceive so that her body is a good environment for pregnancy ahead of time. There are cases where not conceiving means true infertility, so if you really believe you need to seek help then contact your gynecologist.
So once a couple has conceived, a whole new myriad of myths will come from every way.
1. One of the most popular myths is that you can determine the sex of your baby by its heart rate. This is simply not true. The myth says that a girl will have a heart rate above 140 while a boy's will be below 140. A baby's heart rate is unaffected by its gender until it's born when a female's heart rate will increase considerably.
2. Another popular belief is that one can determine the sex of her child by using different positions or conceiving in a certain month. There is just no truth to it. The sex of a baby is determined by the father's sperm and timing has nothing to do with it.
3. Be careful. According to one myth, if you raise your arms above your head your baby's umbilical cord will wrap around its neck and choke it. That just sounds absurb - because it is. If a baby's umbilical cord becomes wrapped around its neck (occurs in 1/3 of births) it's because he or she was very active in the uterus and not because a woman did something she shouldn't have.
4. Craving sweets? Another myth says that if a woman craves cake, candy, and other sweets she is having a girl while sour, salty, and spicy cravings surely mean she is carrying a boy. This is not true, either. In fact, scientists say that cravings do not exist at all.
5. The Drano Test - This myth says a baby's gender can be determined by using the restroom and then adding drano to the toilet. Depending upon the color you will either have a boy or girl. This test is very inaccurate and a risk more than anything. There is no clear consensus on which color equals boy or girl, and the fumes are not worth finding out.
In conclusion, myths are in place to cover every aspect of infertility and pregnancy. These myths should be viewed more as entertainment than actuality. If you are trying to conceive or are pregnant, the best place to seek your answers is from your gynecologist or obstetrician.