A struggle to get pregnant is becoming increasingly common. Today, as many as one in six couples are still trying to get pregnant a year after they started trying. A further one in eight couples have still not achieved a pregnancy after two years of trying.
That’s a dramatic difference to fertility rates 30 years ago and what's more worrying is that studies show that infertility is expected to increase in the future.
So what has changed? The truth is plenty has changed! 30 years ago, the average age that women had their first child was around 21 years of age. Today, that age is closer to 27 or 28 and for many women that starting point is in their 30's.
Many couples are waiting longer to start their families – they may want to finish their educations first, or get established in their careers, or be living in the right house for raising their family.
Divorce and remarriage are also much more common – impacting the fertility window. The truth is – female fertility starts to decrease from the age of 35.
When you think about it, the older you are the more likely you are to be exposed to environmental toxins and more likely to be taking medication for healthy problems.
As well as medical factors, several other issues could be to blame such as poor nutrition and increased stress levels. With so many factors to take in to account it is clear no single solution is likely to resolve the problem.
The practice of Traditional Chinese Medicine holds the belief that the health and well-being of both parents at the time of and/or three months prior to conception are key to the health of the child conceived.
Of course every couple is different but my approach has been to work on what I view are the four main pillars that support your fertility. An imbalance even in one of these can affect your ability to get pregnant.
These pillars are:-
- Your relationship
- Stress levels
Pillar 1 – Nutrition
Nutrition is the first key to fertility – for me it's a little like preparing the soil for planting your garden seeds. If the soil is poor quality and has not received essential nutrients and adequate hydration, the seeds are unlikely to grow and flourish.
In addition, exposure to chemicals such as fertilisers and pesticides is also something to take in to account as an overload of these can interfere with fertility hormones.
Pillar 2 – Your Relationship
Any persistent struggle can affect even the strongest of relationships. A struggle to get pregnant adds in another layer because the potential answer to that struggle involves making love! A lot!
Once you add strong emotions such as anger, guilt fear and performance anxiety in to that mix – then you may have a problem!
Pillar 3 – Stress Levels
Medical evidence is mounting of a link between stress and infertility, both as a cause of infertility but also an effect of the anxiety caused by the failure to conceive.
Stress affects the body in many negative ways. In women, the chemical changes that occur can not only affect the cycle but also prevent the maturation and release of the egg. For the guys it can lead to erectile dysfunction and have an adverse affect on sperm count and motility.
In addition, failure to conceive a desperately longed-for child, repeated medical tests and procedures and failure to get to the root of the problem can create a stressful environment. The entire process can become a vicious circle of disappointment and anxiety.
Whilst managing stress does not in itself guarantee a successful fertility outcome, there is powerful evidence that it can help.
Pillar 3 – Lifestyle
In modern day society there are so many lifestyle factors that can potentially affect your ability to conceive. Long working hours, shift work, a long commute to work, allowing time to eat at work, family commitments, environmental exposure at work, toxic work environments, leaving little or no time for relaxation or healthy exercise .... the list is potentially endless! Of course not all of these factors can be changed – but what you can change is how you manage the effects that they have on your fertility health.
In conclusion - the causes of infertility can be many and varied – they could be related to structural abnormalities, hormonal imbalances, nutritional deficiencies or many other reasons.
Fortunately – you have the ability to take back control! There are viable, safe, and effective natural options to not only support and boost your own natural fertility but which can also assist the medical options.
By making changes to your own health and lifestyle you will feel empowered and back in control. And the fabulous news is – these changes will not only help you get pregnant but will help you have a healthy baby and a healthy life!
Taking responsibility for your fertility is not about your diagnosis or what's wrong. It is about seeing yourself and a fabulously fertile baby making machine, seeing yourself as whole and making whatever changes you need to make – while you wait for your baby to arrive!
Are you tired of being controlled by your struggle to get pregnant? How would you like to take the reigns on your fertility instead of having it control you? Send me a private message to find out how!