While getting pregnant is a deeply personal experience, it’s important to understand the professional opinions and science surrounding fertility. This way, you and your partner can prepare yourselves to bring a new life into this world.
Like with everything though, not every piece of information surrounding fertility is accurate. Some fertility myths are based on old stories while others are just outdated information or common misconceptions.
It’s important to remember that fertility science and technology is moving quickly and this is a good thing. It means that new avenues are emerging that may help you to conceive. Unfortunately, it also means that not all fertility information will be accurate or up to date.
Today we’re going to look at 5 common fertility myths to help you better understand this subject.
Age is the Most Important Factor
It’s undeniable that age is a factor in fertility. As you age, your ability to conceive will decrease and you may face more difficulties getting pregnant. What this doesn’t mean is that your age is the defining factor is getting pregnant.
Women of many ages can conceive and deliver healthy babies. This applies whether you are in your 20s, 30s, or 40s. You may be able to get pregnant easily or you may require some assistance. The important thing to do is to talk to an expert in advance and explore all your options and goals.
Most People Conceive without Trouble
It can be easy to become discouraged about your ability to get pregnant, especially when you hear other people’s good news. While this is understandable, it’s essential to remember that fertility is complex. Many factors can affect your ability to conceive and these factors affect many people.
In fact, 1 in 6 couples have reported difficulties when trying to conceive. Remember that you are not alone on your journey and that getting to know yourself and your situation can greatly enhance your chance of getting pregnant. To take the first step, talk to your partner and discuss your fertility options with an expert.
Male Fertility Does Not Decline
The idea that infertility is a woman’s problem is as much a social issue as it is a scientific one. Not only is this a myth, it’s also an unhelpful misconception. Fertility issues are never about blame and in many cases the problems are multiple, complex or even unknown.
In Australia, around 40% of fertility issues can be traced back to men. This is important to understand because it can help men to prepare and assist them in minimising their risk factors.
IVF Leads to Twins or Triplets
Like many myths, the idea that IVF will result in twins or triplets has some truth to it. When you undergo IVF you and your doctor will generally discuss how many embryos you want transferred to your uterus. Because a single embryo isn’t guaranteed success, many couples opt to transfer multiple at one time.
This can result in multiple births but this is by no means guaranteed. If you only transfer one embryo, there will of course be no chance of having twins or triplets.
Family History Dictates Fertility
If you have an uncle, aunty, older sibling or other relative with fertility issues, this does not mean you will have fertility issues.
You can, however, inherit other medical conditions that are related to infertility. These include polyps, PCOS and other reproductive problems. If you are in this situation, talk to an expert about strategies to increase your chance of getting pregnant.
Dr Alex Polyakov is a Gynaecologist, Obstetrician and IVF Specialist in Melbourne. If you would like to make an appointment or have a confidential discussion, please call us today.