If you are thinking about getting pregnant after 40, you may have to make a little more effort than your younger counterparts. Don't be discouraged, though, there are many ways you can maximise your fertility that can make a surprising amount of difference to your chances.
The first thing you must do is make sure your body is in a completely healthy state. Whereas some younger women will be able to counter the effects of an unhealthy lifestyle, older women generally cannot. Just as you can't drink as much as you did in your twenties without suffering from a bad hangover, you also can't abuse your body with an unhealthy lifestyle and still expect it to function to the best of its ability.
Cut out all alcohol, cigarettes, drugs and caffeine, all of which are stimulants and will diminish your fertility. You will need to get used to this lifestyle once you get pregnant anyway so you may as well start now. Get your partner to do the same. These stimulants have the exact same effect on his fertility as it does on yours, and contrary to popular opinion, male fertility does decrease with age. If you are both serious about conceiving, he will have to make an effort too.
Embark on a healthy diet and exercise regime. Fatty and sugary foods can cause hormonal imbalances that can destroy your chances of becoming pregnant, so make sure you are not eating too many of these. Regular exercise will make sure your body is in its best state, and should even help with hormonal imbalances. You need to make sure you are eating plenty of folic acid, vitamin C and antioxidants - these will all help you to get pregnant, and also help with your baby's development afterwards. Make sure your partner is getting plenty of zinc in his diet - even a small deficiency can affect his testosterone levels enough to make conception difficult.
Invest in an ovulation monitor. You really must take the scientific approach if you're thinking of getting pregnant after 40, because you have to give your body it's best chance. Every time you ovulate, therefore, make sure there is sperm there to greet it. You may unwittingly be missing your ovulation period every month because it really only lasts for a few days. Having sex once a week just won't be enough, and it's best to direct your efforts straight at the ovulation period.
You should be doing all you can to allow nature to follow its course, because sometimes it needs a helping hand. This doesn't mean only have sex during ovulation, of course. There is no danger of your partner's sperm being 'used up' by too much sex. Although regular sex will diminish his total sperm count by a small amount, it should still be well within the range that will be able to make you pregnant. Regular sex is also thought to keep the testicles healthy and to keep sperm motility at a good level.
To really maximise your chances of getting pregnant after 40, however, you should make sure to take herbal fertility supplements. You may be sceptical as they are not actual drugs given to you by your general practitioner, but in fact these herbs can be as powerful as drugs (as much scientific research has shown). Chasteberry, otherwise known as Agnus Castus or Vitex, Wild Yam, False Unicorn Root and Evening Primrose Oil are all highly beneficial for female fertility. They do this by normalizing the hormones and the function of the pituitary gland. Correct hormone balance is essential for becoming pregnant, and is one of the main reasons it becomes so difficult to get pregnant as you get older. These supplements can, therefore, be literally invaluable for women over 40 who want to conceive.