Between 90 to 95% of couples trying to conceive will succeed within 2 years of trying – most of those within 1 year in fact. Some however do have to turn to a fertility specialist for treatment, whether in the form of medication, surgery or lifestyle changes. And then there are a smaller number that actually need assistance in having a baby, choosing options such as IVF, egg donor, surrogacy and so on. If you are having infertility problems you probably have questions you need answered.
While your first approach should be with your doctor here are some infertility FAQs that may help you as they have helped others.
Infertility FAQs – For women
Q.1 Could coming off a patch affect my fertility?
A.1 As with the pill, the patch works by changing your hormones so the body does not ovulate. When you come off it you need to allow your body time to re-adjust an begin a normal cycle again. This can take anywhere from two to eight weeks. You do not need to worry about infertility if you have only been trying for such a short amount of time. Some couples take up to a year!
Q.2 Does having a tilted uterus affect my chances of having a baby?
A.1 This condition is also called a retroverted uterus and it is quite a common condition that around one in three women have. It should not cause problems with your fertility.
Q.3 Can taking the pill for a long time affect my fertility later on I life when I am ready to have children?
A.3 While the pill can cause some problems it is very rare. It is more likely that your age will have an impact if you are delaying pregnancy. After 35 your fertility starts to decline by larger amounts and even more so after 40.
Q.4 I am in my 30s – how do I know if I can am still fertile?
A.4 If you are having regular periods and you are ovulating each month then you are still fertile. How healthy your eggs are and so on can only be judged by getting some tests done, but in your early 30s most women are still perfectly able to conceive. If it has been longer than 12 months of trying despite having regular ovulation cycles, your partner may be the one with fertility problems.
Q.5 I am healthy and in my 20s. We have just decided to have a baby so what are my odds of conceiving? I have a regular cycle.
A.5 For a healthy woman in her 20s your odds are about 20 to 25% of conceiving each month. Half of couples will have succeeded within 6 months and 85 to 90% by a year.
Q.6 Does having an irregular cycle affect my fertility?
A.6 Track your ovulation carefully to see if there are any irregularities with that. Tracking ovulation is harder when you have an irregular cycle and ovulation kits may not be the most accurate for you. Try using basal body thermometers and charting.
Infertility FAQs – For men
Q.7 When is the best time to have unprotected sex with my wife to have a baby?
A.7 During a woman’s cycle she ovulates. This is when a mature egg is released ready to be fertilized. The best time to have unprotected sex is the 5 day leading up to ovulation and the day of ovulation. Your sperm can live for around 5 days inside the woman waiting for an egg to fertilize so this gives you the greatest chances of conception.
Q.8 I have been trying to have a baby with my wife for 5 months with no success. Should I have a semen analysis test?
A.8 It can take a healthy fertile couple in their 20s up to 12 months, some a little longer. However having a semen analysis test would ease your mind if you are concerned about your fertility. If you are a couple in your mid 30s or older then now is the time for both of you to have a fertility test.
Q.9 Do vitamins or supplements really help my sperm?
A.9 Yes they do. Having the RDA of all the vitamins and minerals is important for general health and for your sperm quality.
Q.10 I know what sperm count means but what is sperm morphology and sperm motility?
A.10 Morphology means the shape and size of the sperm and motility means whether it can move forward in a straight line. All men have a certain number of sperm that have an abnormal shape or size and poor or no motility, but you need to have a certain percentage that are normal to be fertile.