Lifestyle choices can affect a woman's ability to conceive. If you want to get pregnant, you may be wondering about your fertility and if there is anything you can do to improve it. Some factors may be beyond your control, such as medical issues that affect your ability to conceive. However, your lifestyle choices can have a big impact on your fertility.
What is female fertility?
Female fertility is a woman's ability to conceive a biological child. You and your partner may question your fertility if you try to get pregnant with frequent, unprotected sex for at least a year - or at least six months if you are over 35 - without success.
What causes female fertility problems?
Difference medical issues can contribute to women's fertility problems, such as:
- Ovulation disorders, which affect the release of eggs from the ovaries. These include hormonal disorders such as polycystic ovary syndrome, hyperprolactinaemia and thyroid problems (hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism).
- Abnormalities of the uterus or cervix, such as polyps or fibroids in the uterus.
- Damage or obstruction of the fallopian tube, which is often caused by inflammatory pelvic disease.
- Endometriosis, which occurs when the tissue that normally covers the inside of the uterus grows outside the uterus.
- Primary ovarian failure (early menopause), which occurs when the ovaries stop working and menstruation ends before the age of 40.
- Pelvic adhesions - bands of scar tissue that block organs after a pelvic infection, appendicitis, or abdominal or pelvic surgery.
- Medical conditions associated with the absence of menstruation, such as poorly controlled diabetes, celiac disease and certain autoimmune diseases such as lupus erythematosus.
Age also plays an important role. Delaying pregnancy can reduce the chance of you being able to conceive. THE reduction in the quantity and quality of eggs your age makes it harder to conceive.
What can I do to improve female fertility?
Healthy lifestyle choices can help you promote fertility.
- Maintain a healthy weight. Overweight or significantly underweight can inhibit normal ovulation.
- Prevent sexually transmitted infections. Infections such as chlamydia and gonorrhea are a major cause of infertility in women.
- Avoid night shifts if possible. Regular night shift work can put you at a higher risk of infertility, possibly affecting hormone production. If you work the night shift, try to get enough sleep when you are not working.
Although stress will not prevent you from getting pregnant, think about minimize stress and apply healthy coping techniques - such as relaxation techniques - when trying to conceive.
What is out of bounds?
The healthy lifestyle choices count here too. To protect your fertility:
- Do not smoke. Tobacco use is associated with lower fertility. Smoking ages your ovaries and destroys your eggs prematurely. If you smoke, ask your healthcare provider to help you quit.
- Limit the amount of alcohol you drink. Excessive alcohol consumption is associated with an increased risk of ovulation disorders. If you want to get pregnant, consider avoiding alcohol altogether. Abstinence during conception and during pregnancy is generally recommended because a safe level of fetal alcohol consumption has not been established.
- Limit caffeine. Female fertility does not appear to be affected by caffeine intake below a certain amount daily. Consider limiting your caffeine intake to one or two cups of coffee.
- Be careful with overwork. Excessive physical activity can inhibit ovulation and reduce the production of the hormone progesterone. If you have a healthy weight and are thinking of getting pregnant soon, consider limiting strenuous physical activity to less than five hours a week.
- Avoid exposure to toxins. Environmental pollutants and toxins - such as pesticides, dry cleaning solvents and lead - can adversely affect fertility.
If you are thinking of getting pregnant and worry about the impact of your lifestyle choices on your fertility, consult a breeding specialist. He can help you find ways to improve your fertility and increase your chances of getting pregnant.