Fertility: 12 things you didn ’t know (and 1 to never ask)
By Katrina Mark, MD 1. Fertility naturally declines as we age That alone doesn’t mean you should start to worry. The general advice I give a woman is if she has been trying to become pregnant for a full year with no luck, she might consider a fertility evaluation. For a woman over age 35, she might consider it after six months. If a woman is younger and has irregular periods, it’s likely she isn’t regularly ovulating, so she might want to be evaluated sooner. 2. Sometimes there’s a reason for infertility – and sometimes, there’s not There are some things we know cause infertility. About 20 percent of the time, we find no reason for it. For a woman, infertility can be due to a condition that causes you to not ovulate regularly such as diabetes, thyroid disease and polycystic ovaries. It can also be caused by blocked fallopian tubes or a history of ectopic pregnancy. For men, it can be due to semen issues such as a low sperm count. Early menopause in women under the age of 40 is rare, but it can run in families and cause infertility. Lifestyle factors such as smoking and obesity contribute to infertility in both women and men. 3. Taking birth control for long periods of time does not hurt fertility No, taking birth control stops you from getting pregnant, but it doesn’t hurt fertility once you stop taking them. 4. If you are having trouble conceiving, consider these culprits: Lifestyle factors: If you smoke, try to quit. If you are ob...
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