With every tick of the biological clock, the reproductive biology in a woman's body suffers a set back. As compared to her 20s and early 30s, getting pregnant after 35 becomes difficult, if not impossible. Even the healthiest of women is subject to natural decline of fertility levels. Her ability to sustain pregnancy is at risk. Huge strides have been made in the medical field in troubleshooting both.
Recently the world's oldest mom gave birth to a healthy child at the age of 70 - Which just proves that the odds are workable. Here is an exclusive article on infertility in women 35 years of age, causes and factors. Find out to what extent infertility issues can be solved. Check what can be done to improve fertility. Pregnancy after 35 is truly possible and can be successful too. Getting older isn't a barrier anymore to enjoying joys of motherhood
Age and infertility
Fertility is the natural capability of reproduction. In women over 35, infertility refers to the inability to conceive and deliver a child even after six months of unprotected sexual intercourse. There are various causes and factors that contribute to infertility
The ovaries play a pivotal role in a woman's reproductive system. Ovaries are the pair of reproductive organs that produce eggs and sex hormones in females. The function of ovaries is linked to a woman's age. As a woman ages, the ovary's ability to produce normal, healthy eggs decline. She may be less fertile than younger women.
Here is stage-by-stage information that succinctly proves decline of ovaries in a woman's body as she ages.
With increase in age, specifically during mid-to-late 30s, fertility rapidly declines. Blood flow to the ovaries decreases, egg quality and quantity suffers. The chances of pregnancy reduce. Further medical problems increase, ovulation becomes irregular, less estrogen and progesterone levels and possibilities of chromosomal abnormalities are higher. Here is information on how fertility decline rapidly with age.
Less egg and ovarian disorders: As a woman ages, the quantity and quality of eggs take a beating. Besides, there can be disturbances in the production and release of eggs.
Reduced blood flow to ovaries: Better blood circulation to any organ of the body supports its proper functioning. As a woman nears menopause, the ovarian blood is considerable lesser than her prime reproductive period.
Fluctuating hormones: Her dwindling hormone levels too affect her fertility. With age, hormones like estrogen, testosterone and progesterone levels fluctuate and will affect fertility levels and pregnancy. An imbalance of estrogen and progesterone hormones can cause infertility.
Cervical mucus: Cells line the walls of the cervical canal, which produce mucus. Fertile mucus allows sperm to pass freely into the cervix. The sperm live for up to 3 or up to 5 days or even longer in women in her 20s. As she grows older, say by 40, the time limit is drastically down to almost less than a day.
Other health conditions: Uterine abnormalities, fibroid tumors are other health conditions that contribute to infertility. Also, women over 35 years are more likely to have endometriosis. It is a health condition wherein the tissue attaches to the ovaries or fallopian tubes, the channel between the uterus and ovaries. Damage to the fallopian tube can lead to infertility. If the fallopian tubes are not functioning well, the eggs cannot move from the ovary to the uterus, a major interference in the process of conception.
Chronic illnesses: Some illnesses and intake of medications can interfere and cause negative impact on fertility.
Unexplained causes: Medical examinations usually reveal a combination of one or two causes that contribute to infertility. However, there are instances where infertility remains undefined in spite of an extensive medical evaluation.
Ovulation disorder: Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the commonest cause of ovulation disorders. 40% to 80% of women with pcos have a problem with fertility. And, pcos affects about 8-10% of women of reproductive age.
The fertility odds are workable. There are many factors that contribute to infertility. Though some infertility factors can't be helped, women can indeed take simple steps that contribute to improving fertility at 35. Understand and acknowledge that your body is the key to successful conception. Set a target and work towards optimal health, which is more than mere functional health. Medical experts opine that a woman's body responds well to conception when things are optimal.
Begin by assessing your daily schedule. Account for diet, habits, exercise, travel time, stressors, relaxation techniques, and quality time with partner, sleep pattern, sex life etc. Check for factors not contributing to good health such as fatty food, cigarette smoking, and alcohol or caffeine consumption. These do contribute to reducing fertility levels and increase chances of miscarriage. List what you can do to control these factors.
Health care providers on their part suggest a hormone level check. The levels of progesterone, estrogen and thyroid hormones will be measured. If need be, cleansing the liver will have to be performed. Other steps such as diet balancing tips, recording menstrual cycles and ways to stabilize menstrual cycles are advised. Partners will be taught relaxation techniques to reduce individual stress levels.
Optimizing all odds can be difficult.Some infertility factors can't be helped. But proactive attention to general health can prevent others, improve fertility so that chances of pregnancy are better and the body gets prepared for pregnancy.
Eat a healthy diet: Nutrition
plays an important role in improving fertility as it has a profound effect on
hormones. Your body requires all that is nutritious, particularly foods that
are high in protein, iron, vitamin c and zinc. These nutrients lower risks
associated to miscarriage. Avoid processed foods and sugar-rich foods. Keep
away from fast foods.
These foods contain fertility damaging toxins. Instead include variety of fresh vegetables and fruits. Vegetables are one of the most natural foods and contain different vitamins, minerals and fiber essential for good health. Nuts, grains and legumes should form part of healthy diet. Include marine food especially fish and poultry products.
Exercise regularly: Consult your physician and discuss suitable exercises taking into account body weight. Being underweight or overweight can cause problems in conceiving. Exercise helps balance insulin and testosterone levels. Your odds of ovulating and getting pregnant also improve. Be cautious, because over exercising can impair fertility.
Detoxify inside: Over the years, on a daily basis, your body is exposed to pollution and toxins by way of inhalation, usage of body care products and cosmetics etc. Some toxins do accumulate and damage our systems. These affect health and fertility. Essential vitamins and minerals deplete thus decreasing fertility levels. In order to remove the accumulated undesirable elements, consider a physician for detoxification and find effective ways to clean inside.
Sleep well: If you are wondering how sleeping well contributes to improving infertility, it would help to know about leptin (hormone) levels in the body. Leptin is an appetite suppressant. It restricts hunger and the person may not eat too well. The person will be more active as a result more energy will be burnt. If one doesn't eat well, sleep patterns are more likely to suffer. If one doesn't get enough sleep, leptin levels may decrease. Medical experts have found that in some infertile women, leptin levels are low.
Avoid Alcohol and caffeine: Alcohol consumption interferes with and alters estrogen levels; which in turn hampers egg implantation. It is best to give up alcohol while trying to get pregnant and restrict to an occasional glass of wine with dinner. Caffeine increases risks of early miscarriage. If totally unavoidable, restrict to one cup of coffee.
Quit smoking: Smoking directly impacts fertility. Compared to non-smokers, women smokers take two months additionally to conceive. At the same time, quitting has immediate effect and helps quickly. The chance of getting pregnant improves greatly. Cigarette smoking is harmful to a woman's ovaries, increasing risks of genetic abnormalities and miscarriage.
Ease stress: There is ample proof as to how the mind affects body. Psychological effects of stress can have negative effects on fertility. Excessive stress may severely impact menstrual cycle and result in suppression of the menstrual cycle. Irregular ovulation, interference with regard to transport of gametes through the fallopian tube etc are likely impacts. The levels of hormones like cortisol or epinephrine remain high when highly stressed. Higher and prolonged levels of cortisol in the bloodstream can have various negative effects in the body. Engage in relaxation techniques. Yoga and massage assist in reducing stress.
Track periods: You should know when you are ovulating, days when you are fertile. Two ovarian hormones, oestradiol and progesterone are produced during ovulation. All conditions are favorable for fertilization. Your chances of getting pregnant are high. Your fertile period starts about 4-5 days before ovulation, and ends about 24-48 hours after it. Track menstrual cycle and be aware of your body's natural cycle. Notice physical changes to learn exactly when you ovulate. Consider purchasing a fertility monitor. An ovulation monitor will indicate when you are fertile and when you aren't.
Ignite intimacy: Let not engaging in sex become a chore with a successful outcome as an expectation. Look for ways to discover new techniques that provide sexual satisfaction. Give enough time to each other. Both partners should view sex as a form of deriving pleasure and providing pleasure. Make the most during the ovulation period. Having sex about once a week can improve fertility. Also, experiment different conception positions so that the sperm gets deposited closer to cervix.
Go herbal: Many women have benefited opting for herbal remedy. Herbs are considered to be a natural fertility medication. Consult a registered naturopath who can assess and suggest herbal medications suitable for your body. Herbs not only improve fertility but also help balance hormone levels and cleanse the system of fertility damaging chemicals. Herbs help in normalizing menstrual cycles, reduce premenstrual syndrome and regulate ovulation.
Desist douching: Douching is detrimental to conception. The vagina has a natural self-cleaning mechanism. The vagina needs good bacteria. Douching gets rid of both good and bad bacteria. The normal pH balance is disturbed and can result in inflammation and allergic reactions in the vagina, which in turn is not conducive for sperm.
Focus on man's health: Healthy sperm is most important for successful conception. Focus on your partner's health, the diet, habits etc. All efforts to boost sperm count and improve shape of sperm (morphology) is required to maximize opportunities of conceiving. Remember a man's body takes 90 days to produce new sperm and following a healthy regime can help in producing healthy sperms.
Improving fertility with PCOS
Women with PCOS besides making simple lifestyle changes to improve fertility naturally need to take some additional responsibilities.
For women who have not benefited by making modification in lifestyle and or medications, surgery for improving ovulation (ovarian drilling) or assisted reproductive technology is an option. Some fats and oils contribute negatively to PCOS symptoms. Avoid vegetable oils like corn oil or man-made fats such as trans-fats, fats found in fatty meats and dairy products. Instead opt for virgin olive oil, flax oil, cod liver oil and fish oil.