You can travel for work or education. You can travel to broaden your horizons and learn about new cultures. And you can travel for family, either to visit them or start one. That last reason for travelling is called either a procreation vacation (gross), or a conceptionmoon (not really a word). The idea is that taking a trip with your partner for a week might be just the thing you need to get knocked up. But does it work?
There are no studies that look specifically at vacation travel for conception. That’s probably because the term “procreation vacation” would make most scientists blush and throw up in their mouths a little. But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a scientific reason a vacation might help you make a baby. Why? More time for sex and less stress.
There are hundreds of studies that show a link between fertility and stress. And they all pretty much point to the same conclusion: Stress isn’t good for fertility. Stress can interfere with hormones related to ovulation and may play a role in decreasing chances of fertilization and implantation. Another study showed that up to three major stress events in one year could decrease sperm count. All told, researchers believe that stress-related issues could account for up to 30% of problems with infertility.
Does eliminating stress help? Possibly. In one bizarre study, stressed women undergoing in vitro fertilization in Israel were made to laugh (and destress) with a clown after treatment. Researchers found that these women were more likely to conceive than those who didn’t get the clown treatment.
Studies also show high levels of the stress hormone cortisol are related to a decrease in sex drive. So is this solved by vacations? Kind of. There is research to suggest that individuals who regularly take vacations feel less stress.
But beyond stress relief, the vacations themselves may be working some magic too. The psychology appears to be sound. Couples who are engaged in exciting activities they both enjoy feel more connected. That connectedness, in turn, leads to increased intimacy.
How To Make It Happen
There are a few tips that will help you make a baby on vacation, and do it safely. Not the least of which is knowing when to go.
You’ll want to try and make sure that you’re taking your trip around the time your partner is ovulating. That can be tricky to figure out, although there are apps that can help.
Essentially, your partner will pop out an egg about 14 days after their period. You have a day or two before and after that to be in the optimum conception window. So there will be some logistics to consider in travel time and length of your stay. But if you try to plan so that the supposed ovulation date occurs in the middle of a long weekend or a week of vacation, you should be covered.
Keep in mind that Zika remains a risk in many parts of the world that are popular for warm vacations. The Centers For Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) warn pregnant people about contracting the virus, but there is little information about how contracting the virus at (or around) conception may affect the fetus. That said, it’s probably best to avoid the risk entirely by vacationing in a Zika-free location. The CDC has a handy map to help.
One you’re at your destination, you may think that the biggest consideration on your getaway will be the hotel room where you’ll be spending most of your time. Not true. Remember that sharing the adventure is what starts the connectedness-to-sex chain reaction. Plus, days of desperate sex will likely be more stressful than fun, which is exactly what you’re trying to avoid in the first place. So plan activities outside of your luxury suite that will allow you to relax and connect. Not every moment has to be focused on getting it on.
In the end, although the various names to describe this kind of trip are incredibly regrettable, there is sound science to suggest it might help you have a kid. In fact, many parents swear by it. If you destress and connect, you just might be planning a babymoon in about six months.
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