- Shettles Overview
- Shettles For a Boy
- Shettles For a Girl
- About Dr. Shettles
- See Also: How Nature Chooses Boy or Girl
How to Choose
The Sex of Your Baby
Dr. Landrum B. Shettles claims it's "the method best supported by scientific evidence". Includes a wonderful chapter clearly explaining with drama and detail how conception takes place, by one of the first men to ever view human conception under the microscope.
How to Conceive a Boy - Shettles Method
Timing intercourse: Have intercourse the day of ovulation.
Why is this important?
- Timing intercourse correctly is the most important factor.
Learn to detect when you ovulate and practice until you're sure you understand your body's signals that ovulation is approaching.
- The ideal time for intercourse is 12 hours before ovulation.
- Have intercourse only once on the day of ovulation.
- If you are tracking ovulation by the BBT method, time intercourse for the day of the "dip" in temperature before the BBT rise.
- If you are tracking ovulation by the CM method, time intercourse as close as possible to the shift from peak mucus back to thicker, cloudier mucus.
- Conditions for conception are ideal on the day of ovulation, favoring the faster Y-sperm. The egg is released at ovulation and is waiting for the sperm, so the sperm don't use up their short lives waiting for the egg to show up. Also, the environment of the vagina becomes more hospitable to sperm at ovulation; the cervical fluid increases and becomes more slippery, making it easier for the sperm to swim, and also becomes more alkaline, helping the sperm to survive.
Abstinence: The father must not ejaculate during the 4 - 5 days before ovulation.
- Intercourse and ejaculation are okay up until 4 to 5 days before ovulation, but after that point the father must avoid any ejaculation until the day of ovulation.
- Always use a condom when you have intercourse, both before and after ovulation, to prevent the possibility of conceiving on days when it is more likely to have girl. (Except, of course, during your one attempt on the day of ovulation.)
- Avoiding ejaculation allows a higher sperm count to build up. Dr. Shettles associated a higher sperm count with more male offspring.
Scrotal temperature: The father should "keep it cool".
- The father should make sure to avoid excessive heat around the scrotum, which can be caused by tight, hot clothing, or an overly hot workplace.
- Choose boxers. Even close-fitting underwear can make the scrotum too warm by holding it too closely against the body.
- No saunas, hot tubs, or scuba diving.
- Bicycling has been linked to impotence and reduced sperm count, so while you are actively trying to conceive you may want to choose another sport.
- The optimum temperature for sperm production is a little lower than body temperature, which is why a man's sperm factory is housed in a handy bag just outside the body -- the scrotum. If the temperature is too warm, sperm count for both X and Y sperm will be reduced, but the more fragile Y-sperm will perish first.
Sperm count: The father should avoid other causes of reduced sperm count.
- Illness can temporarily reduce sperm count, so if the father is sick you may want to delay your attempt until the following cycle.
- Smoking, drug and alcohol use, and exposure to toxic chemicals, can all reduce sperm count.
- Emotional stress is associated with lower sperm counts. You may want to check into relaxation techniques.
- Regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight are lifestyle changes that can improve sperm count.
- Lack of certain vitamins and minerals can lower sperm count. You may want to try a nutritional supplement for enhancing male fertility.
- If you're worried that you may have a low sperm count, you can use an at-home semen analysis kit to check your sperm concentration.
- Any form of stress, not just heat, can affect sperm production and lower sperm count.
Diet: The father may have some caffeine just before intercourse.
- The father can have a couple of cups of coffee (or other caffeinated drink) fifteen minutes to half an hour before intercourse.
- Dr. Shettles believed the caffeine would give both types of sperm a boost, but that Y-sperm would get a little more of a boost.
Female orgasm: Have one!
- The woman should try to have an orgasm during intercourse, ideally just before the man's. (If you don't, though, don't get too hung up about it.)
- Female orgasm causes the cervical fluid to become even more plentiful and alkaline, and thus more hospitable to the sperm, which would again favor the faster swimming Y-sperm.
Vaginal environment: Try to make the vagina as alkaline as possible.
- Douching: Dr. Shettles originally recommended enhancing the vagina's alkalinity with a baking soda douche, but in his book's latest edition, he recommends douching only for women who are very acidic, and under the advice of a doctor. Please consult your doctor before using a douche. If you do decide to douche, here is how to prepare a baking soda douche:
- Use 2 tablespoons of baking soda in warm (not hot) mineral or filtered water.
- Wash your hands and mix thoroughly in a clean glass.
- Cover glass with a napkin, and wait 10 minutes to allow to completely dissolve.
- Most drugstores have reusable douche kits available. You may also be able to buy an inexpensive disposable douche (with a removable top), and pour out the original contents. Since most douches are acidic, rinse very thoroughly.
- Dietary supplements: Although not mentioned by Dr. Shettles, many women also try the gender diet, dietary supplements, and eating alkalizing foods.
Even if you're trying for a boy, read the next part so you know what NOT to do!