Getting pregnant > Trying to conceive > Getting pregnant: your questions > How long does it take to get pregnant?

How long does it take to get pregnant?

Advice on how long it may take you to get pregnant when you and your partner are actively trying for a baby.
How long does it take to get pregnant - that's a million dollar question right there! Unfortunately there is no concrete answer, some couples methodically follow patterns of ovulation with little success, while others get pregnant without even trying and there is little way to predict which category you will fall into.

The stats

Statistically a healthy, fertile couple have a 1 in 20-25% chance of conceiving a each cycle, with approximately 80% falling pregnant within 12 months of actively trying. This approximately translates to 25% of couples getting pregnant in the first month of trying, 60% within 6 months, 75% within 9 months and 90% within a year and a halr, so if that much wanted positive test is taking a little longer than expected you're not alone.

It is currently considered perfectly normal to take up to a year to conceive and unless you have any specific health problems your doctor is unlikely to recommend further investigations until before this time. If you have been actively trying for over a year without success your doctor may suggest that you look into some form of fertility monitoring just as a precaution. For those over the age of 35 it is suggested that you see your doctor after 6 months of unsuccessful trying. This is simply because fertility begins to decline after this age and prompt investigation will allow any problems to be identified and addressed earlier.

The factors

While there is no real way of knowing how long it will take you to conceive there are a number of factors that play a determining role. With this in mind it is often advisable to visit your doctor for a health check before, or soon after you begin trying to conceive, just to make sure everything is in working order.
  • Age - The chances of conceiving a healthy pregnancy are greatest if you are under the age of 35, however many women do have babies well into their 40s
  • Lifestyle - Eating a healthy diet, exercising, avoiding alcohol and refraining from smoking (both you and your partner) will ensure that you are in the best physical health to conceive. It can also be a good idea to take a prenatal vitamin and to supplement your diet with folic acid.
  • Health - Problems with general or reproductive health may hamper your chances of conceiving, it is best to get everything cleared up or controlled with baby-friendly medication before you start trying.
  • Contraception - If you have been taking an oral contraceptive it is recommended that you wait for your menstrual cycle to return to 'normal' before trying to conceive. While this could take several months if does mean that you will be better able to monitor your fertile periods once your hormones have adopted a regular cycle.
  • Stress - While the effect of stress on fertility is still being researched it makes sense to try and relax as much as possible, this will not only help you to enjoy the conception process a whole lot more but will also minimise any health effects that stress may have.
  • Sex - It sounds obvious but the regularity with which you and your partner do the baby dance will have an impact on your chances of conceiving. Regular sex necessary for conception is considered to be 2 - 3 times a week with perhaps more during the days surrounding ovulation.
By ensuring that you lead a healthy lifestyle, have addressed any medical issues and have lots of sex, you should have little trouble conceiving. Fertility charting methods can be used to pin point the time in the month that you are most likely to be most fertile and therefore when you are most likely to conceive. By monitoring the fluctuations of your monthly cycle and timing intercourse accordingly you will maximise your chances of conceiving. Although it may take some time, you will get there eventually.

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Me an my husband have been trin for 11 months now . My periods just got regular january an febuary bc I was on the birth control the implanon . I done an ovulatin calender an it predicted I ovulate today (febuary 28th , 2013) I was on my period , febuary 16th threw the 21st , I had intercource with my honey the 23rd , 24th , 25th , 26th , 27th , & also this mornin the 28th (ovulation day) what are my chances of gettin pregnate this cycel , im young an everyone thinks me an my hubby should wait , we ant ready so I have no one to talk to or ask questions ),,: any coments will help !* please ):
by Mayjerkayy 20th Jun 2013, 3:43pm
Hi!
ive been trying to get pregnant for past few months and nothing,my partner and myself make love regulary sometimes everyday, ive had a couple of pregnancy symptons like feeling sick and light headed,pregnancy test always comes back negative.my partner also is quite a heavy smoker could this play a huge role in me not falling pregnant?please help!
by april11 20th Jun 2013, 3:21pm
Heyy I've cam of the pill about a mouth n go n I'm in the folic acid. When I came of the pill I had a heavy period for a week n NT long a go I have a period whiched last about 3 days n very light . My belly keep getting big n small n getting worrys . My belly button also had twice a sharp pain but I'm not sure if I could be pregnant any ideads xx
by chantelle94 20th Jun 2013, 3:12pm
hi CYates it depends on ur body, I was on the depo for 3 years come off it and got preg within the first 3 months before I even had my first period then went back on the depo for 5 years then come off 2 have my second child took me 9 months 2 get preg, I then had 2 depo injections before me an my partner decided we wanted another so stopped the depo and now been trying for 15 months with no luck :( my periods are now irregular and back in sept found out I had endometrious which I had an op 2 remove in nov they removed it all and said it hadnt damaged anything since then I've been doing ovulation tests which are pos but still no sign of getting preg so I would say it just depends on how ur body copes after it. Hope u have some luck getting preg :)
by babylove85 24th Feb 2012, 3:29pm
hi CYates! Ive had a similar query. I had a chat with my doctor and he said that it can take any time between when the depo stops and 18 months for ur periods to start, hence u are then able to concieve. I started depo in may 2010 and my last injection ended on the 5th jan 2011 and ive just come off a 7 day period so im back to normal after only a month! It realy does just depend on you and your body. Sorry it wasnt a definate answer bt hope it helped!
by jessiemay 28th Mar 2011, 8:47am
i have been on the depo injection for a few months and it runs out on the 16th of feb, how long will it take for me to concieve after this injection clears my system as me and my partner want to try for another child?
by CYates 25th Jan 2011, 5:41pm
Hello everybody,

we have been tryng to conceive over the last 11 months. Nothing has happend so far. We have monitored ovulation for the last 9 months but nothing yet. we are both 37 and we have neve been parents before....
the GP di not want to refere me to a ginecologist yet....but i am really starting to get worried.
Any advice? apart from folic acid, relax, no coffee, cigarettes and alchool?

Thanks so much! K
by KaOliv 25th Jan 2011, 5:41pm
I got the implant out today how long will it take before I get pregnant?
by xxxsophiexxx 17th Jan 2011, 2:48pm
I came off the pill a fortnight ago and started trying. Whilst I was on the pill I was bleeding every few days and since our first attempt a few days after coming off the pill i've had no bleeding, stomach cramps, sore nipples and feeling quite seedy some days. It's not yet 2 weeks since our first attempt so tests are coming up negative. Is there a chance im pregnant?
by nj25 26th Nov 2010, 5:08pm
i have been trying to get pregnant for about 3 yrs now...i had a miscarriage at about 5weeks nearly 2 years ago...and cant get pregnant again..im 25, my partner is 40. should i go to the doctors for help?xx
by louisemay 1st Sep 2010, 10:13am
Hi,my husbasnd and i have been trying to conceive for 2 years with no luck. Im starting to worry that theres something wrong but am to frightened to go to the doctors! Im starting to think that im the only one in this position as everyone i meet lately seems to be pregnant. Im so worried,is there anyone whos been in this position or anyone with any advice?
by jess12 16th Aug 2010, 5:11pm
Me and my Partner have been trying for a Baby since 6th March 2010 since then i've had all the Symptoms but the test kept coming back Negative.
then my nipples started to hurt and always feeling sicky but still a negative response back.
Also my periods lasts for 2days which is strange.
Any1 got any Suggestions??
by Nataliee 12th Aug 2010, 10:15am
hey every 1, ive been with my fella for almost a year now, n on the day before x-mas eve.....i found out that i was having a miscarige with a unplanned pregnancy after 6 months of meeting each other, n both me n my fella thought we cudent have kids from past relationships, so were overjoyed to know we could have kids, n decided we would try and get pregnant now..........and it seems so much difficult now, i just want it to happen now, does anyone know of anything i can do or take to help speed up the process.
by Jahnavipat 18th May 2010, 4:48pm
im 18 and am desperate for a baby. i had a nasty experience when i was 16 and since then a baby is all ive ever wanted, i feel i have tryed everything and i am getting so depressed. i have recently found out 3 of my freinds are pregnant. please help!
by cupcake18 30th Nov 2009, 11:10am
I have been trying to conceive for 2 years now and the doctors have never taken me seriously with my concerns. I am only 21 so they never listen to me. My periods have started to get irregular and I cant help but get excited when I am late only to hit depression when my period finally turns up. My sister was trying for 1 month and got pregnant which is really heart breaking as she has 3 already. I feel there is something wrong with me or God must hate me!!
by KWILSON 14th Jul 2009, 5:58pm
I'm worried that I won't be able to conceive. I have polycystic ovary syndrome and my partner is 35 and producing very little sperm. I on the other hand am 18. Can anyone put my mind at rest??
by GoatiesBitch 14th Jul 2009, 5:58pm
i have been for four years on pills, am now trying to concieve for the last four months. i cant wait the day when it will be positiv. how can it work fast?
by jule78 6th Jul 2009, 9:06am
i have been trying for over a year now, and still havent fallen, i was a week late and then came on, what shall i do i have tried everything?
by lushiouslil 18th Jun 2009, 9:46am
Thanks FreeAngel for your response. I have read so many positives and appreciate peoples comments. Fingers crossed for this month......month number 6 now. Due period in about 10 days and tried this month :-) I shall keep you updated <3
by Snowbell 16th Jun 2009, 11:55am
GOOD LUCK EVEYONE :)
by ShareenElliisBabyx 8th Jun 2009, 9:46am
Snowbell/Leanne,
I had exactly the same surgery and was told at the time it could affect my chances of conceiving. I went on to have my son (who was a complete surprise) five years later, following one night without contraception! I've had abnormal cells removed again since but the Gynaecologist I saw told me that the original advice I'd been given was wrong. Years of worrying unneccessarily. Now trying for number two myself. Good luck! x x x
by FreeAngel 18th May 2009, 9:40am
Without loss of verginity can a women get pregnant? but doing intercource almost regularly.....
by Indian 28th Apr 2009, 10:18am
If you think you might be pregnant its better you know when was your last period and it takes a month from your last to show up on a home pregnancy test. I watched a show the other day of women that didnt get symptoms of pregnancy, little to none gained weight, some women lost weight and no belly and they ended up giving birth to 6month old baby without knowing they were pregnant so there babys had high chances of having problems.
by sein 27th Apr 2009, 9:37am
hello i have been trying to get pregnnt for over a year i had the depo injection and now i can not concieve can any one help please? my sister has just concieve and i am really happy for her and i have wanted one for over a year.
by xlilxvickyx 21st Apr 2009, 10:16am
We have been trying for 6 months. I have been feeling sick, had a slight faint in Sainsburys and had a little show instead of my period. There I was thinking woo hoo this is it. Then this morning, after a restless night, my period started. Will my cycle ever calm down long enough for us to get pregnant?
by AndreaB 6th Apr 2009, 9:25am
Hi, i've been having unprotected intercourse since xmas, but with irregular periods i am finding it hard to find out when i am ovulating, my cycle various from 30- 37 days. my last period was on the 6th-10th. I'v been feeling vry tired and had pains in my stomache recently, im hoping this is my lucky month although im not sure when i can take HPT?
by XKatX 30th Mar 2009, 9:41am
For Kazz28 who just came off the depo injection.I came off the mini pill in July last year and my boobs and I didnt feel that great either but i think it was just my hormones balancing themselves out.Hope this helps.
by mitsy1983 3rd Feb 2009, 9:18am
I had my last period on the 6th of dec 2008,i have had it on the 4th of this month.Do you think i should be ovulating right at this moment...
by presky 15th Jan 2009, 5:34pm
Hi, I have endometriosis and i know for me it will take me longer to conceive im very stressed and cant stop panicking that i will never get pregnant. Any advice?
by carlyjane 12th Dec 2008, 9:45am
I had a tubal reversal performed on 10/13. Fertile 10/17-10/20. Did have sex in hopes of pregnancy. Can it happen that fast?
by AJO5 20th Oct 2008, 10:59am
hi i am new to this have been off the depo shot for 7 months now had a period 1 month after comin off it.gettin pregancy symptons got very sore breasts feelin sick all the time but when i do a test it comes up negative what is going on with my body.is there any body who could give me any advice on this thx kazz
by kazz28 20th Sep 2007, 8:51am

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