Conception Misconceptions – Debunking Infertility Myths

February 16, 2009 by  
Filed under Pregnancy

In an Asian country, there is a popular practice where couples wishing to have a child dance on the streets carrying images of saints. The frenzied procession of couples have become a tourist attraction of sorts but the sad fact of it is that the couples are there seriously imploring the heavens to give them a child.

Here are some other myths about infertility that range from simple misconception to downright ridiculous beliefs:

1. Getting pregnant is easy.

Not true. Getting pregnant may seem very easy and effortless especially when you hear stories about teenagers getting knocked up fairly quick but the truth is, one in seven couples all over the world find it difficult to conceive. Infertility is a medical issue that is mostly caused by physical problems in the reproductive system of one or both partners. Even in perfectly healthy, fertile couples engaging in unprotected sex, the chances of fertilization is only 20%. Which means, that your neighborhood teen probably had several tries before getting into the problem she is in now.

2. Failure to get pregnant indicates infertility in the woman.

Not true. Only 35% of infertility cases are caused by problems in the woman’s reproductive system. An equal 35% is caused by male infertility. Another 20% is caused by problems in both partners while the remaining 10% of infertility cases cannot be diagnosed even by today’s modern fertility clinics. As such, when trying to find out the cause of infertility, both the man and woman will have to be thoroughly evaluated.

3. Stress from work and personal problems can cause infertility.

Not true. Unless of course the stress and personal problem actually prevents the couple from having intercourse in the first place, there is no conclusive medical study to indicate that stress actually directly causes fertility problems. However, if stress leads you to smoke and drink more, then fertility problems can arise. Smoking is directly linked to infertility, preterm delivery and stillbirth especially among women.

4. Bedroom acrobatics can increase the chances for pregnancy.

Not true. There is a popular belief that, if a couple wants to get pregnant, they should use certain positions to aid the flow of semen into the cervix. There are no medical tests to prove this. However, there are new medical devices that can be used at home which address fertility problems such as low sperm count or mobility. In the US, the FDA has approved a prescription device called a cervical cap which allows all the semen to be collected and placed up directly on the cervix to increase the chances of fertilization.

5. Adopting a baby will “induce” a couple to get pregnant naturally.

Not true. Probably owing to the fact that Angelina and Madonna got pregnant after having had a couple of adoptions, people actually think that adopting a baby can somehow “induce” the couple to get pregnant with their own child. Not only is this ridiculously unfounded but is actually sadly twisted. Adopting a baby should not be used as a means to achieve an end because parenting, whether naturally or through adoption, is not only a physical but a moral responsibility.