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Five Fertility Myths Debunked

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Myth #1: If my period is regular, I’m fertile.
Fact: Most irregular cycles can be traced to a specific cause, such as polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) or primary ovarian insufficiency (POI). However, just because you have a regular cycle doesn’t guarantee that all’s fine with your fertility. A number of underlying issues may hamper conception: blocked fallopian tubes, endometriosis, structural problems, and even STDs.

Myth #2: If I take good care of my general health, my fertility will be in check too.
Fact: Yes, a good diet, supplements, exercise and healthy lifestyle are all recommended to get your body baby ready. However, just because you’re in seemingly tip-top shape doesn’t mean you’ll be able to conceive easily. An underlying condition, including a structural issue, blocked fallopian tubes, fibroids, polyps and even blood clotting disorders can all compromise your fertility.

Myth #3: If I’ve already had a baby, I won’t have problems conceiving again.
Fact: Secondary infertility -- the inability to conceive or carry a pregnancy to term after having one or more children -- is on the rise. It accounts for more than half of all infertility cases. The causes tend to be the same for primary infertility, but increased age may be a factor too.

Myth #4: Infertility is primarily a woman’s issue.
Fact: Infertility affects men and women equally. In fact approximately 40 percent is male factor, 40 percent is female factor, and in 20 percent of cases it’s a combination of factors or unexplained. If a couple is having trouble conceiving, it’s important that both undergo a fertility workup.

Myth #5: 40 is the new 30; and that pertains to fertility too.
Fact: Age matters. A woman’s fertility starts to decline in her early 30s and then rapidly in her late 30s. Just because the media is rife with stories of celebrities having babies into their 40s doesn’t mean they conceived naturally.

So if you’re under 35 and have been trying to conceive for a year, over 35 and trying to conceive for six months, or are aware of any underlying problems, schedule an appointment with a fertility specialist (reproductive endocrinologist).

By Jennifer A. Redmond / www.fertilityauthority.com

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