Pregnancy can be both an exciting and stressful time for both the mother and father. The arrival of a new family member can be suspenseful as all the preparations to welcome your new child has to be done on time. Thanks to nature, soon to be parents get an approximate nine months to prepare for their newborn baby. Thanks to modern science, you also get a choice on whether you want to know the gender of your child several months before delivery.
Why You May WANT TO Know Your Baby’s Gender
Knowing your baby’s gender in advance can make it easier for both parents as you can prepare yourselves down to the very last detail. You can start preparing gender appropriate headbands, clothes, shoes, blankets, painting the nursery, and even picking names. For new parents, not knowing the gender and having to prepare all the details right after delivery can be hectic and stressful for the mother. Having a newborn means insufficient sleep and having to coordinate the preparation of the nursery and necessities can seem almost impossible. Some parents would also prefer to have their baby blankets, diaper bags, and decorations monogrammed. By knowing the gender of your baby, you may also feel more connected as you feel that you have already started to know your child.
Why You May NOT WANT TO Know Your Baby’s Gender
The obvious reason to not wanting to know your baby’s gender is of course, the element of surprise! It can be exciting not knowing and looking forward to the delivery. It is also much more natural as this was how things were done back in the days when there was no technological intervention. It can also be fun guessing the gender with your family members. Besides, the ultrasound can be wrong at times as well! As for the preparations, you can always get gender neutral baby blankets and clothes that can last about two weeks before you get more that are gender specific. Painting the nursery to be gender neutral is also beneficial if you plan on having other children in the future. Additionally, other items such as single or double strollers are more universal and don’t depend on the sex of the baby.
How To Tell If You Are Having A Boy or A Girl
While there are reliable ways to know the gender of your child (ultrasound, amniocentesis, and genetic tests), there are also some couples who are split between knowing and not knowing. In these cases, perhaps you can have a bit of fun predicting and guessing using the following methods. The gender of your baby is determined as soon as fertilization occurs (when the sperm meets the egg). The genitals start developing approximately at 11 weeks of pregnancy, but it can only be viewed via ultrasound several weeks later. Keep in mind that not all of the following methods are accurate and are mostly based on tradition, culture, and old wives’ tales.
The Severity Of Your Morning Sickness
It has been often said that the severity of the morning sickness is associated with the baby’s gender. It is thought that if your baby is a girl, the hormone levels would be higher and hence, pregnant mothers tend to have more morning sickness. In boys, there would be less morning sickness. Medically speaking, morning sickness can vary with each woman and each pregnancy. Looking back, my mother had severe morning sickness with both pregnancies and she ended up with two girls. In a study published in The Lancet, it was reported that mothers with hyperemesis gravidarum (severe morning sickness) had a predominance of female offspring. In a more recent study based on a survey of 18,000 women from 1987 to 2005, it was observed that women with more severe morning sickness have a slightly higher chance to give birth to girls by 7%. However, this study was only conducted in Sweden and care needs to be made in the interpretation of the data.
Your Skin Condition
Although a baseless belief, there are some people who believe that having a baby girl causes breakouts as the baby girl will try to “steal” her mother’s beauty. This also applies to hair where having a baby girl causes the hair to be limp and dull. There are no studies to support this belief. In pregnancy, the hormones can be unbalanced and affect each and every woman differently. Try washing your face more frequently to prevent breakouts and using a nourishing shampoo and conditioner to improve the condition of your hair.
The Type Of Food You Are Craving
Medically known as pica, these cravings during pregnancy are common. However, some believe that if you crave savory and salty foods such as pickles and potato chips, you are having a boy. If you are having a baby girl, you tend to crave foods that are sweet such as candy and chocolate. This belief also has no support and no conclusive studies have been conducted to associate the types of food cravings and gender of the baby. Generally, food cravings usually have more to do with the nutritional needs of the body. During pregnancy, it is common to crave foods that you don’t usually like. A study found that approximately 50 to 90% of pregnant women have specific food cravings. However, researchers and scientists do not know why this happens, but it may be due to your rapidly changing levels of hormones. It may also be due to the fact that you are now supporting another life inside and your body is working much harder to produce the nutrition that is needed by both you and the baby. It may be interesting to note that food aversions occur at the same time food cravings start.
What Is The Heart Rate Of The Baby
One of the most famous myths is that the heart rate of the baby can tell you the gender of the baby as well. It is said that if the fetal heart rate is below 140 beats per minute, it is a boy while if it is above 140 beats per minute, it would be a girl. Although this may sound as if there is scientific backing, there has been no conclusive studies that supports this belief. Instead, a study conducted and published in 2006 concluded that there is no significance between the fetal heart rates of male and female babies.
How Are You Carrying The Pregnancy
Another famous belief is predicting the gender of the baby based on how you “carry” the pregnancy. It is believed that if you are carrying low, chances are that you are having a boy while if you are carrying high, it is likely that you will be having a girl. This belief also has no scientific support as how you carry the pregnancy is determined by your body type, shape of your uterus, and tone and strength of your abdominal muscles. It is also affected by the amount of weight you gain during pregnancy and if it is your first pregnancy.
Ways You Can Choose To Conceive A Boy or Girl
Are you specifically trying to have a baby girl? Or a baby boy? There are many theories about factors that could influence the gender of the baby you are trying to conceive. However, science have proven that the chances of conceiving either a girl or boy is almost exactly equal. The gender of the child is determined by the chromosomal pairing of the mother and father. While many in history have often put the blame on the woman for not conceiving a son as an heir, it is the father’s chromosomes that ultimately determines if the child is a boy or girl. Although some couples tend to only have sons or daughters, science have concluded that it is mostly due to luck.
To simplify the explanation of how the gender of the baby is determined, remember that females have the sex chromosomes (chromosomes that determine gender) “XX” while males have “XY”. All the eggs of the female contain the “X” chromosome while the male’s sperm contains either the “X” or “Y” chromosome. During fertilization, if the sperm that contains the “X” chromosome fertilizes the egg (“X”), the baby will be a girl. If the sperm that contains the “Y” chromosome fertilizes the egg (“X”), it will be a boy.
If You Are Trying To Have A Girl…
- It is advised that couples should have intercourse 2.5 to 4 days before the day of ovulation. (This means that you should keep tabs on when you are ovulating!)
- The couple should have intercourse daily starting from the day the woman finishes her menses.
- The couple should avoid intercourse that involves deep penetration. The missionary position is recommended.
- The woman should consume foods that will support a more acidic environment in the vagina. This includes green leafy vegetables, corn, blueberries, and wholegrain foods.
If You Are Trying To Have A Boy…
- Couples are advised to have intercourse on the day of ovulation (within 24 hours of timed ovulation).
- Deep penetrative intercourse is encouraged.
- It may help if the woman achieves orgasm.
- Try having your partner changing from briefs to boxer shorts instead.
A Fertility Clinic May Be The Choice For You
Remember that the above methods are not proven and have no scientific backing. The most reliable way of gender selection is to have it done through a fertility clinic. The process can be very expensive, but may be an option for those who are really set on having one sex as opposed to another.