Babies are dreamt about long before held in the arms of their parents meeting them for the first precious time.
Before seeing for our own eyes the child we will love all of our lives, it is exciting to dream about who the baby will be. A boy? A girl? Whether a first pregnancy or a fifth, parents often have a personal preference for either a bouncing baby boy or a darling little girl to complete their family.
There are many theories about how to conceive a boy or a girl.
Strong beliefs about how to ensure a certain gender are seen in many different cultures through out time. Some claim high standards of proven effectiveness, yet others seem just for fun.
One prediction method, a 13th century Chinese conception chart, helps to calculate the mother’s Chinese lunar age and understand which months of the year have better chances for her to conceive a boy or girl. The Chinese Gender Chart, or Chinese Gender Predictor as it also called, can purportedly identify the sex of the baby before birth with 90% accuracy.
How does it work? Very simply! To plan for a baby’s gender using the Chinese Gender Chart, one refers to the chart to find a period of conception to have a boy or a girl based on the mother’s 'Chinese age".
It is recommended that to increase the chances of becoming pregnant with the desired gender, a period from the chart when the gender is consistent for at least two months should be chosen.
To predict the gender of a baby one needs only find the mother’s age according to the Chinese Lunar Calendar on one axis of the chart and the month of conception (also according to the Chinese Lunar Calendar) on the other axis. The meeting point indicates the baby’s gender.
Even though the answer is astrology based, the ancient Chinese Gender Chart remains today a popular way to have some fun with natural gender selection.
There are other popular reproductive medicine techniques for gender selection and plenty of folk wisdom about how to optimize the chances for a boy or a girl. We know that modern medical science techniques for fertility treatments, inclusive of sex selection, offer the advantage of comparably higher accuracy rates and scientific bases. Of course these methods come at higher costs by adding up to several thousand dollars to the cost of in-vitro fertilization.
Introduced more than two decades ago Preimplantation Genetic Diagnosis, or PGD, a technique used with assisted reproductive technologies such as in-vitro fertilization, has an almost 100% effective rate for sex selection. Primarily used as a way for at-risk couples to have an embryo screened for certain genetic conditions such as single gene disorders and chromosomal abnormalities, it is also used to screen for sex selection. Its use for sex selection is principally to avoid the passing on of serious sex-linked diseases such as hemophilia.
Yet, in select cases couples wishing simply to balance their families with a healthy baby boy or girl can do that with preimplantation genetic diagnosis. Although the American Society for Reproductive Medicine recommends against using PGD for non-medical gender selection, clinics around the world in countries like Cyprus, Mexico, Ukarine, Columbia, Greece, and Panama offer gender selction for families already with a child and who are interested in family balancing: for those who wish a preferred gender order among children, a gender distribution in the family, or the offspring of the same sex.
The increasing use of PGD for general, non-medical purposes of sex selection raises ethical questions making it more controversial. “Designer Babies” refers to a term for babies whose genetic makeup has actually been selected through reproductive technologies and PGD or perhaps MicroSort methods. The idea is that parents can select certain physical traits such as eye color, height, and hair color in addition to the gender of their babies.
From an ancient Chinese Gender Chart to the advantages of modern medical infertility techniques, it seems there are plenty of ways to plan (with varying degrees of effectiveness) for a baby boy or a baby girl to balance and complete your family.
To find out your options for gender selection contact an infertility specialist near you.
American Society of Reproductive Medicine Practice Committee. Preimplantation genetic testing: A Practice committee opinion. Web. Jan. 31, 2012.
Chinese Gender Calendar: The Secret of Baby Gender Prediction. Web. Jan. 31, 2012.
Center for Genetics and Society. PGD Frequnetly Asked Questions. Web. Jan. 31, 2012.
Baby Center. Choosing Your Baby's Sex: What the Scientists Say. Web. Jan. 31, 2012.
The information on this site is not a substitute for diagnosis or treatment from a licensed medical practitioner. If you are experiencing a serious medical condition call your local emergency services or your doctor.