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Health » Sexual-health » Things-about-babies-060703
Top 10 things we bet you didn't know about making babies

Dr. Aniruddha Malpani Dr. Aniruddha Malpani
Renowned infertility specialist. He runs an infertility clinic in Mumbai and has written many books.

10 things to know about making babiesOne of the most amusing books I have read on infertility is: A Few Good Eggs : Two Chicks Dish on Overcoming the Insanity of Infertility  by Julie Vargo and Maureen Regan.
The book is targeted towards infertile women living in the US, and is written in the currently fashionable "chick-lit" style. It's amusingly written; and is a breath of fresh air, if you are the sort of person who finds a sense of humour helps you cope better with infertility.


The book has lots of Top-10 lists, and here's their list of Top Ten Things We Bet You Didn't Know About Reproduction

  • Cervical mucus has a purpose - really.
  • Men produce sperm constantly.
  • Conception takes place in the Fallopian tubes.
  • You may not ovulate the same time every month.
  • Ovaries don't necessarily take turns ovulating.
  • An egg has a twenty-four hour life span.
  • Conception doesn't take place the night you have sex.
  • Your fallopian tubes might be blocked, and you wouldn't know it.
  • Your uterus could be scarred, and you wouldn't know it.
  • Given the right conditions, sperm can live inside you for several days.
Here are my comments on their list.

  1. Cervical mucus has a purpose - really

    Mucus is like the snot which pours out of your nose when you have a cold - only it comes from another orifice! It's sticky and wet - and most women don't have a clue what it does. They often confuse mucus with a vaginal discharge, and believe that it occurs because of an infection. It's actually a product of the cervix (mouth of the uterus); and is produced prior to ovulation. It helps the sperm to swim towards the eggs; and is a great way of helping you track your "fertile time".

  2. Men produce sperm constantly

    Unlike the eggs in a women, sperm seems to be a renewable resource. Maybe this is why it seems (to some women) that (some) men seem to only think of having sex all the time - all the billions of sperm they produce have to find an outlet!

  3. Conception takes place in the Fallopian tubes

    The mysterious tubes (found only in women, but named after a man who "discovered" them) are where fertilisation occurs. The egg and sperm meet in the fallopian tube - which has evolved to serve just this one specific purpose. It's a magnificent bit of plumbing, which is highly specialised!

  4. You may not ovulate the same time every month

    While all the books seem to suggest that ovulation occurs on Day 14 of a cycle, this is a gross over-simplification - and many women's bodies don't seem to have read the books!
    Remember that this is a biological system, and a little bit of variation is par for the course. This variation occurs in all women - most of whom never pay any attention to. Infertile women, on the other hand, obsess over tracking their ovulation down to the precise minute!

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