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August 17, 2022 Fertility

10 Things You May Be Surprised To Learn About Fertility

Written by: Beverly Clinic

If you’re trying to conceive, you may think you know everything there is to know about fertility. However, there are actually quite a few surprising facts about this important topic. Here are ten things you may be surprised to learn about fertility:

Your clock is ticking

As a woman gets older, her chances of getting pregnant naturally start to decline. This is because the quality and quantity of a woman’s eggs starts to decrease as she ages. While a 20-year-old woman has a 25-30% chance of getting pregnant each month, by age 40, her chance of conceiving drops to just 5%. Age is not the only factor that can impact a woman’s fertility. Other things like smoking, being overweight or underweight, and stress can also make it more difficult to conceive. However, age is the most significant factor. So, if you’re over 40 and trying to get pregnant, it’s important to talk to your doctor about your options.

The law of numbers

Women are born with all the eggs they’ll ever have, and that number decreases as we age. Before ever entertaining the notion of building a family, a woman has between 6 and 7 million eggs prior to birth. By the time adolescence begins, ovarian follicle atresia, a process that causes this to gradually drop with age, reduces that number to approximately 300,000 eggs. This decline begins in our mid-to-late twenties and accelerates as we approach menopause. As a result, egg freezing has increased in popularity in the last few years for its ability to preserve your fertility for years to come.

Infertility affects more people than you may think

Infertility isn’t just a woman’s issue. While it is typically considered a female problem, infertility affects both men and women. In fact, infertility is diagnosed in men about 30% of the time.

There are a variety of causes for male factor infertility, including low sperm count, poor sperm quality, and blockages in the reproductive tract. Low sperm count is one of the most common causes of male factor infertility, and it can be caused by a variety of factors, including genetics, health problems, or environmental factors. Poor sperm quality is another common cause of male factor infertility. This can be caused by genetic defects, health problems, or exposure to certain chemicals or medications. Blockages in the reproductive tract can also cause male factor infertility. These blockages can be caused by surgery, injury, or infection. Regardless of the cause, male factor infertility can make it more difficult to conceive.

Being regular is a good thing: your hormones

Hormones play a vital role in fertility, as they help to regulate the menstrual cycle and ovulation. Imbalance in hormone levels can lead to problems with fertility. A hormonal imbalance may be indicated by periods that are heavier during menstruation, shorter, more frequent, or longer than usual. For example, if there is too much or too little of the hormone progesterone, it can interfere with ovulation. If there is an imbalance of the hormones follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH), it can also affect ovulation. PCOS (polycystic ovarian syndrome) is another hormonal disorder that can impact fertility. PCOS occurs when there is an excess of testosterone, which can prevent ovulation from occurring regularly. Treatment for hormonal disorders will vary depending on the cause, but may include medication or surgery. In order to ascertain whether an underlying disease exists, women should discuss menstruation symptoms with their gynecologist.

Drugs are drugs, prescribed or not

It may be challenging to get pregnant if some drugs mess with your hormones.
It is well-known that some prescription drugs can have an impact on fertility. For example, certain treatments for cancer can significantly reduce sperm count and make it difficult for a man to father a child. Other medications, such as those taken for high blood pressure or depression, may also affect fertility. It is important to speak with a doctor about any concerns you may have about how your medication may affect your fertility. In some cases, there may be alternative treatments available that do not have the same risks.

While there is no definitive answer as to how illicit drugs affect fertility, it is generally believed that they can have a negative impact. Drugs can interfere with the body’s natural hormone levels, which can in turn disrupt the delicate balance required for fertility. Even marijuana use might have an impact on a woman’s menstrual cycle. Research shows that heavier medications, such as opiates, can inhibit ovulation by interfering with the brain regions that regulate the release of female hormones. Additionally, some drugs may directly damage the eggs or sperm, making it more difficult for conception to occur. While every person’s body is different, and therefore will react differently to drug use, it is generally best to avoid using any illicit substances if you are trying to conceive.

“Baby-proofing” your home takes on a whole new meaning

Fertility is the natural ability to produce offspring. It is a complex process that involves many different hormones and chemicals in the body. Some of these hormones and chemicals can be affected by common household chemicals. One example is phthalates, which are found in plastics and many personal care products. Phthalates can disrupt the normal production of hormones in the body, including those that control fertility.

Perfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), such as those found in Teflon, have also been proven to have an impact on the menstrual cycle. Bisphenol A (BPA) has also been linked to a decrease in female fertility.

Exposure to lead can also impact fertility. Lead is found in old paint, soil, and water pipes. It can damage the reproductive system and cause problems with hormone levels.

Other common household chemicals that may affect fertility include: pesticides, herbicides, cleaning products, and solvents. Some of these chemicals can interfere with the body’s ability to produce hormones. Others can damage the reproductive system or affect the way that the body uses hormones.

If you are trying to conceive, it is important to be aware of the potential risks of these chemicals. Talk to your doctor about ways to reduce your exposure to them. You may also want to consider using natural or organic products in your home.

Your parents were right, you are a product of your environment.

There are a number of social factors that can affect fertility, such as obesity, smoking, and alcohol consumption. All of these can lead to hormonal imbalances that make it more difficult to conceive. Social factors such as these are often interrelated, so it is important to address all of them if you are trying to conceive. Making lifestyle changes such as eating a healthy diet, quitting smoking, and reducing stress levels can improve your chances of conceiving.

It is clearly established that smoking cigarettes adversely impacts fertility. This is applicable to both men and women and includes non-smoking partners who passively inhale tobacco smoke. Smoking cigarettes – even secondhand smoke – has been shown to reduce fertility time and time again. This is true for both assisted (IVF) and non-assisted reproduction. If you are thinking of becoming pregnant (and even if you’re not) now’s the time to quit. Fertility specialists also recommend avoiding drinking alcohol for at least one month prior to trying to conceive or starting a fertility treatment. Alcohol can impair fertility and lead to serious damaging health effects to the fetus.

STDs

Sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) can have a significant impact on fertility, both in terms of the ability to conceive and in terms of the health of the pregnancy itself. In some cases, STDs can cause permanent damage to the reproductive organs, making it impossible to conceive, or scarring, infection and obstruction problems that can make conception difficult without infertility treatments. Even when fertility is not affected, STDs can still pose a risk to the developing fetus, causing birth defects or other health problems.

For these reasons, it is important for couples who are trying to conceive to be tested for STDs and to receive treatment if necessary. If you have an STD, it is also important to tell your healthcare provider so that they can take steps to protect your fertility and the health of your pregnancy.

Enjoy that dessert, just not too much.

One of the most crucial aspects of your lifestyle that might impact your fertility is maintaining a weight within the ideal BMI range of 20 to 25. Obesity has been linked to fertility problems in both men and women. In men, obesity can lead to lower levels of testosterone and sperm quality. In women, obesity can lead to insulin resistance and polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), both of which can make it difficult to become pregnant. Being overweight or underweight can have a detrimental impact on your fertility, according to several studies. Women run the danger of being unable to ovulate naturally and becoming pregnant if they don’t get enough calories and fats each day. However, as obesity can impair normal hormone function and fertility, being overweight or obese can also have a detrimental impact on a person’s ability to conceive.

The small things can matter in the long run

When it comes to fertility, stress can be a major roadblock. When you’re feeling stressed, your body goes into “fight or flight” mode, which can lead to a decrease in fertility hormones and an increase in the stress hormone cortisol. This can make it more difficult to conceive.

There are a few things you can do to manage stress and improve your fertility:

  1. Get regular exercise. Exercise can help to reduce stress levels and improve overall health, both of which can be helpful in boosting fertility.
  2. Eat a healthy diet. Eating nutritious foods can help to improve energy levels and mood, both of which can be impacted by stress.
  3. Practice relaxation techniques. Taking time each day to relax and de-stress can make a big difference in overall stress levels. Try yoga, meditation, or deep breathing exercises.
  4. Seek support from loved ones. Talking about what’s causing stress can help to lessen its impact. Lean on loved ones for support and understanding during this time.
  5. Talk to a doctor. If stress is impacting your ability to conceive, talking to a doctor can help. They can offer additional tips and resources for managing stress and improving fertility.

Conclusion

So, if you’re like most people and think you know all there is to know about getting pregnant, think again! The truth is, fertility is complex and each person’s journey toward conception is unique. That’s why it’s important to consult with an experienced fertility specialist who can help you navigate your specific situation and give you the best chance of achieving pregnancy. Beverly Hills Fertility is here to provide you with the latest information and answer any questions you may have. Contact us today to schedule a consultation and start your journey toward parenthood.

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