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Ovulation is the release of an egg from the ovarian follicle. Knowing the time of ovulation is crucial to be able to conceive, because fertilization can occur only on ovulation. See ovulation symptoms and ovulation calendar.

Thus, the probability of conception is determined by the lifespan of the sperm which is up to seven days, but usually is not more than three, and the lifespan of the egg, which is less than 24 hours. Given the survival times, we can conclude:


You need to know exactly the time of ovulation to be able to conceive successfully, especially if you are not able to have intercourse so often.

Girl or Boy?

Can you select the timing of intercourse to predict the gender of your baby? There are theories that say that the earlier before ovulation intercourse took place, the more chances that the baby will be a girl. This is because the "female" (X chromosome) sperm has a longer lifespan than the "male" (Y chromosome) sperm, but "male" sperm is more motile than "female" sperm.

So, if the intercourse takes place on ovulation, then male sperm, because of better ability to move, will reach the egg earlier than the female, and thus a boy will be conceived. If the intercourse takes place several days before ovulation, then chances that only female sperm will survive, and thus the chances of a girl are higher.

So, to conceive a girl, you need to have intercourse about three days before ovulation. To conceive a boy, you need to do that on ovulation.

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