First of all, please understand that I am not a medical professional and therefore cannot give you medical advice. What I’m sharing here is simply what worked for me. I offer no guarantee that what worked for me will also work for you. Discuss any medications or supplements with your doctor before use.
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If you’re like me, once you have that urge to have a baby, you can’t just sit back and be patient and wait for it to happen. Unfortunately, we don’t have much control over the matter, especially if you have PCOS. Whether or not we conceive a baby is ultimately not up to us. However, there are some things you can do to increase your chances of making a new little bundle of joy with your partner. I was able to get pregnant with PCOS for less than $50!
My husband and I found out we were pregnant two weeks to the day before our wedding. It came as quite a shock, even though I hadn’t been on birth control pills for a couple of months. You see, we decided to elope out of state, so we had to travel to get our marriage license. Bad weather and a really hectic weekend lead to me missing a couple of pills and noticing some mild spotting. I told my now husband that since the birth control isn’t working anymore anyway due to the missed pills, I’d just start a new pack after my next cycle.
That was in April 2014. In June, my cycle still hadn’t appeared. This came as no surprise to me because my cycles have always been extremely irregular. I would typically have a period every 3 months, sometimes longer. Since we were about to get married, I scheduled an appointment with my doctor to find out what we could do to regulate my cycles to make it easier for my hubby and I to conceive a baby in a couple of years when we chose to. It was at that appointment that we found out I was pregnant!
Fast forward a year to June 2015. My husband and I want our babies pretty close together, so we have decided to forego using any form of birth control and just “see what happens.” Since our little one was now almost 6 months old, I figured most of the birth control aspect of breastfeeding would soon be a thing of the past and we would hopefully conceive relatively quickly. In August when it still hadn’t happened (I’m very impatient, as you can tell from this timeline) I scheduled an appointment with my doctor.
She did some bloodwork and thought my hormone levels and even an ultrasound looked normal, but sent me to a fertility doctor to discuss what could be going on. It was this doctor who explained that I had textbook PCOS, even though I had no visible cysts on an ultrasound. She explained that my LH and FSH level ratio was 3 to 1 and that, coupled with my irregular cycles, made her almost certain that I have PCOS.
Even more scary to me was the term anovulation that she used.
She doubted that I was ever ovulating and that my son was just a lucky fluke.
She explained that a lot of her PCOS patients come to her shocked that a second baby is taking a while to conceive. Typically, these women have been on birth control for years and come off of them suddenly to start trying to build their families. This sudden change in hormones can sometimes indicate to your body that it’s time to mature an egg for possible fertilization and voila! A baby is conceived.
Unfortunately, baby number 2 is often much more difficult to conceive because your body doesn’t have this sudden shock of hormones from discontinuing birth control. Instead, women will struggle for months or years to conceive. This just wasn’t an option for me, but since I was still breastfeeding our son, medications weren’t an option either. I just had to accept that this could take a while.
Before we left, the fertility doctor told my husband and I about a supplement I could try to take called Pregnitude. She didn’t seem to expect it to work, but I figured we’d give it a shot. After shopping around a little, I decided Pregnitude was a little out of our price range for a supplement that might not even work. As you know, I’m frugal (aka cheap)! If you’d rather use what my fertility doctor suggested, you can purchase it here. Here is what worked for me instead:
If you’re like me and would rather use a cheaper version, you can purchase Inositol and folic acid separately. Now, it’s important to note that Pregnitude is comprised of myo-inositol and folic acid. You take two packs of this each day. I couldn’t find definitive information online regarding the difference between myo-inositiol and regular inositol. Some sites claimed it’s the exact same thing. Others claimed myo-inositol is what you need. The Inositol I listed below lists the ingredient as myo-inositol. I can’t recommend it enough. This is the exact product that I purchased.
Supposedly, taking folic acid in addition to inositol is key in order for your body to absorb the inositol and let it do the work it needs to do. This is the dose I took. I took a teaspoon of inositol in the morning in a glass of milk, a folic acid supplement in the middle of the day, and another teaspoon of inositiol in the evening. I started this process on September 24th, 2015 and had my first positive pregnancy test on October 12th. Folic acid is a very important step! Don’t leave it out!
Basal Body Temperature
I’m including this step last, but it really should be the first thing that you do. Run, don’t walk, to your nearest drug store and purchase a basal thermometer. This is the one I use. There are many apps you can download on your phone to help you keep track of your temps. Some people just jot theirs down, others chart them in Excel, still others (like me) use an app to help them keep track.
Here’s how this works. Begin taking your temperature with your basal thermometer first thing every morning. I don’t mean after you toss and turn and hit the snooze button numerous times. I mean take your temperature the second you wake up. Even getting up to go to the bathroom can significantly impact your temperature.
My thermometer stores my most recent temp, so I don’t have to wake up completely and jot it down. I just wait until I actually get up for the day and log it then. My temperatures stayed between 96.5 to 97.5. Most people claim theirs stay even more regular. Suddenly, I noticed my temperatures started to climb to the 98 degree range. I showed my chart to my husband and said “I like the look of this. Sure enough, a few days later I had a very, very faint positive pregnancy test.
If you’re struggling with PCOS, please talk to you doctor and then try the Inositol/Folic Acid combination to see if it helps you. Be sure to track your basal body temperature so you can establish your baseline and see when you ovulate. Again, I can’t guarantee this method will work for you and my heart goes out to all of you struggling with infertility. Fertility treatments can get REALLY expensive, so it makes sense to me to start with the most natural and cost effective solutions and work up from there.
Do you struggle with PCOS? What have you done to try to get pregnant with this syndrome? Has anything worked for you? Let me know in the comments!