What can affect your fertility?

What can effect your fertility (Blog Banner) (1)

It's thought that five to six thousand people undergo fertility treatment in Ireland each year. There are a lot of reasons for infertility, some can be diagnosed and sadly sometimes, the only diagnosis is unexplained infertility. The medical science is changing quickly, and we are learning and adapting all the time but there are some medical reasons and lifestyle choices that can affect fertility.

Firstly, it’s important to note that it’s not just women who are the only ones experiencing infertility. Among couples experiencing infertility, roughly 35 percent is due to the male, while another 35 percent is due to the female. Another 20 percent is a combination of both male and female factors, and the remaining 10 percent is unknown.

When one of the most natural things to happen isn’t happening, it’s an extremely tough time, emotionally and psychologically. If you have any concerns regarding you or your partners fertility or you have been trying to conceive for a period of time with no luck, then you may want to consider booking an appointment with a fertility specialist.

 Here are some of the main reasons for infertility/fertility issues:

  • Age is very important because women are born with their eggs. Egg quality starts to significantly deteriorate after the age of 35. By the age of 40 the percentage of damaged eggs is much higher than pre-35.

  • Ovulation Disorders – these can include PCOS (Poly Cystic Ovarian Disorder), over or under-active thyroid, too much exercise and excessively controlled diets can also lead to ovulation issues.

  • Endometriosis - which occurs when endometrial tissue grows outside of the uterus, may affect the function of the ovaries, uterus and fallopian tubes.

  • Abnormalities on the cervix or uterus for example, polyps or tumours.

  • Any damage to the fallopian tubes - The fallopian tubes are very important but sometimes they can get damaged, during a surgery for example. If someone has an infection, such as Chlamydia, it can block the tubes.

  • Complications relating to a prior pregnancy or surgery – you may have got pregnant before but are experiencing secondary infertility.

  • Male Factor Fertility – lots of reasons for male infertility including but not limited to – low sperm count/sperm function, impaired sperm delivery (problems with ejaculation), environmental factors (over exposure to pesticides, radiation, chemicals, heat), substance abuse, excessive alcohol consumption, being overweight, smoking.

  • General Lifestyle – smoking, lack of exercise, unhealthy diet, excessive alcohol consumption, high BMI.

  • Early menopause/peri-menopause – these affect the overall hormonal balance in the body which can affect the ability to get pregnant.

  • Cancer and cancer treatment – both radiation and chemotherapy can affect fertility.

So, as you can see, there are a lot of reasons which could be causing fertility issues. At ReproMed, our rule of thumb is, if you are under 35 and have been trying to conceive for one year with no success, we suggest seeing a fertility expert who can organise investigative testing. If you are over 35 and trying to conceive for over six months, we then advise seeking the help of a fertility specialist.

Get in touch today if you would like to learn more about your options.

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