Can You Get Pregnant Before or After Your Period?

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A woman generally gets pregnant in the middle of her menstrual cycle when she ovulates. Ovulation could occur early or late and not hit exactly in the middle of the cycle. If you have a 30-day cycle, that means you are likely to get pregnant 15 days after the start of your menstrual period, which also is 15 days before the start of your next period. So, yes, you can get pregnant before and after your period.

Right After The Period

  • According to obstetrician Dr. Robert Zurawin, of Babycenter.com, it's unlikely a woman will get pregnant right after her period has stopped, but it is possible. Zurawin said a typical period lasts about five days. However, if your period lasts seven or eight days, you are only five or six days away from the middle of your cycle and ovulation by the time your period finishes. You have to consider that sperm can live up to three days inside the fallopian tube. Therefore, if you have had unprotected sex, if the sperm is lingering and you ovulate a little sooner than you usually do, it is possible to become pregnant.

Sperm Can Hang Around

  • It is possible to get pregnant if you have unprotected sex a week before you ovulate, according to Pregnancy.lovetoknow.com, which would be approximately a week after your period stopped. It all depends on the conditions of your vaginal canal. If the conditions are optimal, sperm can and will survive. Fertilization doesn't always happen at the time of sex. It can happen several days afterward.

Know When You Are Fertile

  • A woman needs to know when her fertile time is, if she wants to get pregnant or avoid pregnancy. In addition to figuring out when the middle of your cycle is by counting the days, according to Olinda Rola of Pregnantfocus.com, you need to pay attention to your cervical mucus. It will let you know when you are ovulating because the mucus becomes an egg white-like discharge. If you want to get pregnant, realize that conception occurs most frequently when a couple is in the missionary position because this position works with gravity and not against it. The semen is encouraged to flow toward the uterus. The rear entry, or "doggy style," position also is good. This allows the man to deposit semen close to the woman's uterus. Side-by-side sex may work if you're going for a pregnancy because this allows your partner's sperm to start its journey as near to the cervix as possible. After ejaculation, regardless of the position used, the woman should stay on her back for a few minutes to help maximize semen flow toward the uterus.

Menstruating

  • In a 2005 study by the National Institutes of Health, it was determined that a woman's fertile period can extend up to the day that menstruation is supposed to begin. The study also found that a woman can become fertile as early as day four of her cycle, which would be the fourth day of the menstrual cycle. That means that you can get pregnant while menstruating.

Ovulation Is Not Completely Predictable

  • Ovulation, the time when you can get pregnant, is not totally predictable. Those who are at higher risk for having erratic ovulation are teenagers and women who are getting close to menopause. If you don't want to get pregnant, don't take any chances. Use contraceptives.

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