Stress and Infertility

February 16, 2009 by  
Filed under Fertility

A lot of people believe that those who chose to be homebodies after graduation generally had more kids while the career-oriented achievers in the class either had only one or no children at all. Which led to a debate whether it was by choice – the homebodies have more kids because they have the time to make them and rear them, or if it was something actually related to the perceived stressful environment that working couples are exposed to?

Working full time is synonymous to being busy and always on the go. The theory is that the physical and mental stress of keeping a career will inevitably affect hormones and organ functions which can then lead to, among others, infertility. However, homebodies who had several kids contend that they are exposed to just as much stress as those working in office environments. Household chores and taking care of kids can be just as physically and mentally draining as beating deadlines but this has not prevented them from having more kids.

The fact is that infertility is more than lifestyle and the stresses associated with it. Infertility affects one in seven couples all over the world. Infertility and the failure to carry the pregnancy to term is a medical condition that, in many cases, is reversible with the right intervention. Infertility can be caused by problems in either or both the man and woman’s reproductive systems.

In a small percentage of cases, the cause of infertility cannot be determined at all. Often, the solution can be as simple as getting the timing right or as complex as a combination of fertility pills and surgical procedures that make it possible for a couple to conceive. In all cases, taking a vacation away from work and stress will, unfortunately, not be enough to resolve infertility.

While there are no conclusive studies that can actually directly relate stress and infertility, it is important to note that stress does lead to lifestyle choices which have been proven to reduce fertility. Stressed individuals have been known to smoke and drink more and these are directly related to diminished quality of sperm and egg cells.

The failure to conceive and successfully carry the pregnancy to term can also lead to anxiety and increased sexual dysfunction. In this case, it is infertility that is actually causing the stress rather than the other way around. The pressure to conceive can be daunting for many couples. Often it strains the relationship which makes it even more difficult to work on getting the right timing to get pregnant. When a couple tries a fertility solution, team effort is necessary especially when using fertility calculators. If stress on the marriage results to the couple having sex less then fertility indeed suffers.

Research on the link between stress and fertility is still relatively new and more studies will probably provide a clearer picture about the connection. What is important is to not get too caught up in the mechanics of getting pregnant but work on getting the right attitude to pregnancy and parenting. If working on getting pregnant is stressful, imagine what it’s like raising the kid.

Infertility Solutions – Finding the One that Works

February 15, 2009 by  
Filed under Fertility

You finally married the man of your dreams, got settled in a cozy suburban home where there is plenty of warm, open space for lazy afternoon strolls. The only problem is you still do not have a rosy-cheeked cherub to take on those dreamy strolls. You have grown wary of pregnancy tests – it simply breaks your heart every time the results come out.

Guess what? You are not alone. In fact, studies show that one in seven couples experience infertility. The good news is that infertility is a medical condition, and like most medical conditions, advances in medicine and technology can make it possible for couples to conceive. There are several options available but the key is getting an accurate assessment of the problem which is preventing the couple from getting pregnant.

A common misconception is that infertility is a woman’s problem. On the contrary, male infertility is just as common as female infertility. In women, the most common problems causing infertility are endometriosis, having polycystic ovaries, and damage to the fallopian tubes caused by infections like Chlamydia. The most common causes of male infertility include azoospermia and oligospermia where no sperm or very few sperm are produced. Chromosomal anomalies can also cause malformation of sperm cells or cause the sperm cells to die before they can reach the egg.

Medical treatment for infertility can range from simple home remedies like tracking ovulation with basal body temperature or fertility calculators to more invasive surgical procedures like In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and related techniques belonging to what is now called Assisted Reproductive Technology or ART. ART is used to for complex problems which prevent successful fertilization inside the woman’s body. It usually begins with using stimulants that induce the ovaries to produce eggs. The eggs are then fertilized outside the body in a laboratory setting before being reinserted into the uterus where the fetus continues its development.

In the United States, the FDA approved the first medical conception device that can be used at home. A cervical cap allows all the semen to be placed directly on the cervix for several hours. This prescription device can be used to bypass problems such as low sperm count and mobility, or a tilted cervix. This is definitely more scientific than the “hips up theory” which requires the couple to do bedroom acrobatics supposedly to aid the sperm cells into the cervix.

Alternative fertility solutions are also available and have been scientifically proven to provide results. These alternative infertility treatments include acupuncture, which is now widely used in conjunction with IVF to provide better transfer success, and manual physical therapy. Physical therapy techniques include the Wurn Technique which is aimed at returning function to blocked fallopian tubes.

Like any other medical issue, the key to resolving infertility is accurate diagnosis of the problem. Knowing what it is that prevents successful pregnancy will allow you to choose the most suitable solution. Also, a positive attitude to the whole process is necessary especially since the pressure to get pregnant quick can be daunting and stressful. In the end, it is important to remember that the picture-perfect life is not something already set and framed. It is a working canvass of endless possibilities.

Planning Your Pregnancy-Why You Should Do It?

February 14, 2009 by  
Filed under Fertility

Pregnancy is a wonderful experience for a mother who wants to experience motherhood and the joys of being a parent. To some who are not ready to become parents, pregnancy is not something that they do not want to go through for the moment due to a number of reasons. Since statistics show that there have been quite a number of cases on unplanned pregnancies, one should consider panning their pregnancy so that getting pregnant does not become a burden to them but a beautiful experience.

Once a woman become sexually active, she has to take into consideration that anytime she has sex, there is a huge possibility that she becomes pregnant if she is not protected. Contraceptives play a huge role in preventing unplanned pregnancies and women should be aware that if she is not prepared to become pregnant, she can use contraceptives with the help of her service provider or she can abstain from sex and wait until she becomes ready to become a parent.

Planning one’s pregnancy is something that every woman should take into consideration. Once a woman becomes pregnant, she needs to be healthy and as much as possible worry-free for the entire 9 months that she is pregnant. If her pregnancy is unplanned, this may result in a very worrisome and stressful experience for her which is not only bad for her but also for her baby.

Studies show that when a woman is pregnant and problematic, these results in pregnancy complications such as low birth weight in babies, premature labor and some could also lead to miscarriages. Pregnancy should be a happy experience for a woman not something that she dreads to go through and not being happy during pregnancy affects the baby inside of her.

Aside from the emotional problems, having unplanned pregnancies also has financial repercussions. For one thing, giving birth entails a lot of money and so does raising a baby. After the delivery, the parents need to think about buying diapers and paying for the vaccines that the baby needs so that the baby grows up healthy and strong. If the couple is not financially ready, they won’t be able to provide for their baby’s needs and the baby might grow up sickly and most probably undernourished.

Pregnancy is not something that should be taken lightly. Couples have to remember that taking care and raising a child are serious responsibilities and this should start the minute the woman becomes pregnant. Having a baby is a gift, not a curse so couples have to make sure that they plan their lives as well as their families so that no one suffers in the end. If their lives are planned properly, the children will grow up well loved and well taken care of. If not, more often than not, the children suffer the consequences of their parent’s actions and they end not feeling wanted and needed by their families. Pregnancy is not a game. It is a responsibility and it should be planned.