Understanding Secondary Infertility



You conceived your first baby on the first
try. No stress, no counting on the calendar, not even quite sure you
were ready.The next one should be just as simple, right?
Unfortunately, your first experience with

conception does not necessarily predict what will happen the next time around.

Below,
we answer some common questions we hear about secondary
infertility.Read on to learn more about this condition, as understanding
your fertility clock is key to making each possible moment of
conception count.

What is secondary infertility?

Secondary
infertility means you’re experiencing difficulty conceiving after a
previous pregnancy, whether it ended in birth or miscarriage. Its
prevalence in couples has increased by 60 percent in last 20 years,
occurring in nearly 12 percent of couples. Often couples will delay
seeking help because they assume everything will fall into place as it
did the first time.

What is the most common cause of secondary infertility?

The
most common cause of secondary infertility is increasing maternal age.
More frequently, women are delaying childbearing. In general, almost 15
percent of women wait to have their first child until after the age of
35. Some women may be close to 40 before they are ready for baby number
two, an age when fertility rates decline rapidly.

How does aging affect fertility in general?

You
are born with all of the eggs you are going to have. They age as your
body does and lose the ability to form a healthy embryo. At age 40,
almost half of your eggs are genetically abnormal and unable to grow. By
age 42, over 80 percent are abnormal. For this reason, it is so
important that women over 35 do not miss any opportunities to conceive.
Using an ovulation kit or an iApp to predict ovulation can insure that
you know when is the fertile time of your cycle to optimize your chances
of conception.

Can my diet and overall health influence my ability to conceive the second time around?

Many
women are surprised to hear that their diet and overall health cannot
overcome the effects of aging. Often times after a baby, women find it
difficult to lose the extra weight they had gained. This, too, can cause
fertility problems. Women who are overweight have higher levels of
estrogen, because estrogen is stored in fat cells. When estrogen levels
are elevated, the normal cycle of ovulation can be shut down. Women may
find that their periods become less predictable or they may skip them
all together. If your periods are more than 35 days apart, talk to your
doctor about dietary changes you can make to lose weight or about
medications that can help you to ovulate.

What forgotten factors might be hindering my chances of conception?

Everyday
factors may also hinder a woman’s likelihood of conceiving. After baby
number one, some women simply do not have the time or energy for sex.
Having a toddler, or two, at home leaves many moms exhausted. The last
thing on their mind after a day of work, making dinner, chasing a little
one, and organizing the house is being intimate with their partner. As
much as they love their partner, sex can feel like a chore. In these
cases, identifying the most fertile times of the month – with the help
of an ovulation calculator – can focus a woman’s energies to the times
that they are most likely to conceive.
Dealing with secondary infertility can awaken a variety of emotions, and the experience is unique for every woman.
You
may feel guilty for waiting so long to try again, stressed about making
time for sex while juggling the duties of a wife and mother, or angry
that this is happening to you. Do your best to accept these emotions as
they come and know that everything you are feeling is normal. Be open
and honest with your OB/Gyn and she will work with you to discuss your
options and help you through this journey.
The
Mommy Docs are practicing OB/GYNs and stars in the hit show “Deliver
Me,” airing daily on Discovery Fit and Health, in addition to a new
series in development. The Docs are also authors of “The Mommy Docs’
Ultimate Guide to Pregnancy and Birth,” and spokespersons on behalf of
Insight Pharmaceutical’s portfolio of women’s health products, including
e.p.t and Monistat.Their opinions and professional recommendations are
their own.

Read more: galtime
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