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Infertility / Fertility Guide

Susan Cody HERWriter Guide

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ask: How can you tell if you're able to have a baby?

By GennaV
 
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I want a child, I am thirty nine and I want a child. I am sexually active yet cautious. I am starting to think maybe it is getting too late for me to have a child. Are there any tests to do to see if I am fertile? Are they 100% accurate? I really want a baby...any suggestions?

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EmpowHER Guest
Anonymous

Is it true if your having a regular period and having periods you can have kids?

January 6, 2012 - 12:05pm
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide (reply to Anonymous)

Hi Anon

Thanks for your post!

Unfortunately, no, having a regular periods does not necessarily mean a woman is fertile, although regular periods do help women who are trying for a baby.

There are many reasons for infertility, and women with regular periods can also be infertile.

You can read all about infertility here: http://www.empowher.com/media/reference/infertility-women

Best,

~Susan

January 6, 2012 - 12:38pm
Alison Beaver

GennaV,

I have a little different perspective that I wanted to share.

My concern is that you lost 100 pounds without even knowing (and, I assume, without trying?). Have you had this evaluated by a doctor?

Why are you asking about infertility if you have not begun trying to conceive; I'm wondering if you are worried about any health conditions? Most women we talk to assume they are so fertile that they will "get pregnant" the minute they stop using birth control, so I'm wondering why you have a different take on this?

I'm sorry to hear about your sister's passing away, and hope that you and your family are able to depend on each other for support.

Are you currently seeing an OB/GYN on a regular (annual) basis? I think it is crucial for you to make an appointment for a check-up to talk with your doctor about wanting to conceive, while talking about your family history of conditions, and learning why you had a rapid and significant weight loss---this can most certainly have an impact on your cycle. It will also help ensure that when you do become pregnant, that you will have all the knowledge and preparation (prenatal vitamins, for instance) for the healthiest body you can have for your growing baby! :-)

Best wishes!

September 1, 2009 - 12:53pm
GennaV

Thank you Susan...I feel more confident and I am so ready to start trying!!! I will keep you updated!

September 1, 2009 - 1:20am
Susan Cody HERWriter Guide

Hi GennaV

Nobody can tell you if you are too old to have a baby (unless you are, you know, really old!) - and just because men can have a baby in their 80s, doesn't mean they should!

If you know you are ready for a baby and really want one (and you indicate a resounding 'yes' on all counts!) then your best bet is to start trying right now.

We all know women who have had kids into their 40s, and Hollywood seems teeming with these women, but the fact is that it's much harder to get pregnant at 40, than 20. In fact, at the age of 20 your odds of getting pregnant per monthly cycle are up to 30%+ and at age 40 it has decreased dramatically to a mere 5%. In addition, the risks to both mother and baby (from diabetes to Down's Syndrome) are also greatly increased.

At 39, you are certainly not "too old" (at least by my standards, I do know women who think having babies after 35 is downright wrong!) but you do need to be realistic. You could be pregnant by the end of September, but you may also find that it's taking far longer than you planned. A lot of people say things like "look at Celine Dion, she's pregnant! And Marcia Cross was mid 40s and had twins and so was Christie Brinkley and Nancy Grace..." but the fact is that these women have undergone fertility treatments or used frozen embryos in order to get pregnant. They were unable to do so naturally. This is very costly and hard on the body.

I am an "older mother" myself, having had my kids at the age of 34, 35 and 36 and I don't think that the age of 40 is some kind of cut off point for all women but I think women have been drawn to believe that it'll be magically easy because they know people who have done it and they see gorgeous 50 year old movie stars on the cover of magazines with their newborns! But the fact is that these women are the exception, rather than the rule. I do know many women who had very successful pregnancies at 40+ but know more who did not, although they tried.

No-one should tell you "when it too late too late" - it's your own business! But you do need to be informed of the risks involved, as well as the potential of needing fertility treatments.

Congratulations on all your weight loss - it sounds like your body is very healthy and ready to carry a little passenger! I wish you the best of luck and I hope to hear some good news soon! By the way, a friend of mine just had a baby and she's 39. It's not "too late" and certainly not impossible!

August 31, 2009 - 12:17pm
Alison Beaver

GennaV,

Yes, there is infertility testing that both you and your partner can undergo. Some of the testing is expensive and invasive; others are less expensive and non-invasive.

How long have you and your partner been trying to actively conceive? Are you using specific methods to increase your chances (tracking cervical mucus, tracking menstrual cycle on a calendar, having unprotected sex frequently, etc)?

If your answers are "yes" and "we have been trying for over 12 months", you will need to talk with your OB/GYN regarding your concerns regarding infertility, and can refer you to an Infertility Specialist. You can read about the signs, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment for infertility Women's Infertility Reference page.

You can read more about the different types of infertility testing below from our experts:
- Dr. David Adamson Videos on Infertility Testing
- Dr. Dao Videos on Alternative Medicine and Infertility/Fertility
- Infertility-Fertility

Does this information help?

August 30, 2009 - 8:52pm
GennaV (reply to Alison Beaver)

Yes, very much Thank you!
I will read the infertility pages actually, I have been irregular all my life up until about 3 years ago.

I had been dealing with personal family deaths, I lost over 100 pounds within a year and a half without even knowing I did. Everyone kept saying your losing weight, but I never paid attention until my oldest sister passed away before my birthday.

I had a herniated disc from moving furniture after out of town family left...had back surgery in March of this year and am still trying to get my core stronger, I still wake up achy.

I realized that for a year my menstrual cycle was evened out so to speak...I would go 6 months without it or six months straight on my period...when I didn't notice to eat and lost weight, I could count on my period being regular. I was always at the beginning of the month always around the 6, 7, or 8th of the month and it never failed, for a year i was like this and it lasted only 3 days...this was awesome. Never been regular like this before and I never knew about how to diagnose my fertile moments or when I was Ovulating...until recently.

I so want a child and I just want to be able to know if I am still able to have one. I know men can have them until their a hundred or so, but for women I know, we are limited...when is too late too late? Should I even try? No my bf and I still practice safe sex. We haven't started trying but we are active.

August 30, 2009 - 10:31pm
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