It usually takes an average of six months for a couple to conceive after they start trying, but for 1/5th of the population in the US this might be a problem. Of course, it is recommended to visit a doctor, if you are experiencing prolonged problems getting pregnant.
Apart from some medical issues which may impair either the male or female or both to get pregnant, there are a number of other factors, which may affect the chances of conceiving.
Here are some of the lesser known factors, which can affect fertility:
One recent study has shown that even the season you choose for trying to conceive is important. Israeli scientists have found that men’s sperm quality and quantity is at its peak in the spring season. Thus, March or April could be the best months to try for a baby. The reasons for this correlation are not so clear though. One of the theories is that sperm likes and thrives best in a cooler environment, and that the summer heat may lessen the quality of the sperm produced, killing off a lot of healthy sperm. Another possible reason for the spring sperm peak is the affect of longer daylight on sperm production. In any case, a correlation was found in this study involving more than 6,000 men.
Other studies have found that obesity and being overweight can affect the fertility of both sexes. The reason is that, when a person is overweight, the body’s metabolism changes and usually slows down. With the metabolism slowing down, the hormone levels in the body also start to fluctuate. Hormones, as we know, are crucial for the proper functioning of both the male and female organism. So, a good idea is to lose that extra fat through a healthy diet and some exercise if you are planning on starting to conceive a baby.
Another research team recently announced that men who lead a less active lifestyle and lead a more sedentary life tend to have lower sperm counts than those who choose to exercise 3 or 4 times a week. The reasons for this correlation are also not fully clear. Some of the experts claim it is the heat factor affecting the sperm, and others – the obesity associated with the more sedentary lifestyles.
Drinking more than the recommended quantity of alcohol, as well as smoking, are two of those habits which you should consider quitting when trying to get pregnant. And this goes both for the future mothers and the future fathers as well. A study done in the UK earlier this year showed that about 25% of the men who chose to quit smoking did it because they were suffering from some type of erectile dysfunction or were having trouble conceiving. The fact is, that quitting smoking increases the chance of conception by improving the health of the womb and the quality of the sperm, and decreases the risk of suffering a miscarriage as well.
Stress is another factor which can affect fertility both in men and women. An Italian research found that men who were suffering with medium to long-term stress and anxiety had lower sperm counts than healthy men. Again, whether the stress was causing the infertility, or the infertility was causing the stress wasn’t clear, but the fact is that there is a link between the two. This means, that finding ways to treat the stress, through various relaxation methods or stress management can definitely boost fertility as well.
Eating an unhealthy diet based on foods rich in saturated fat, such as fast food meat and dairy products also was found to be linked to lower fertility rates by a research team in Denmark. Choosing to eat the healthier fats such as Omega-3 fatty acids in salmon, mackerel and sardines and olive oil, and generally following a healthier and balanced diet, such as the Mediterranean diet will not only improve the overall health of the parents-to-be, but will also increase the possibility of conceiving a child as well.
A good idea to improve your fertility is to try some natural medicine, including herbs known to safely improve and boost fertility, such as: Ginseng, Ginkgo, and Maca root for improving quality and quantity of sperm, and Milk thistle, Alfalfa and Vitex for the ladies. There are some ready supplements available, such as Conceive for Him and Conceive for Her, which the couple can also take to improve their fertility and increase their chances of conception.
In conclusion, we might suggest that leading a healthy lifestyle, free of stress and eating a healthy and balanced diet, along with some herbal supplements, will improve your fertility.
Remember, even if there are some health issues involved which deter the chances of becoming pregnant, the couple should not lose hope – the modern medicine is capable of wonders, and in case even that fails, there is always the possibility for artificial insemination, using a surrogate mother, adopting a child and feeling the wonders of being parents!
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