If you or a loved one has been trying to conceive for a year or more, you have probably heard well-intended advice like "Just relax, do not stress it, and it will happen!"
However, the reality is a little more complicated, says Dr. Shweta Shah, one of the best gynecologist doctors in Malad. She says that infertility can impact a relationship in a variety of ways that are too difficult to establish.
Infertility can negatively impact a person's relationship with friends and families, cause financial hardship, disrupt a couple's relationship, and affect the couple's sexual relationship. Infertility, in a nutshell, can be very upsetting and stressful.
How are stress and infertility related?
Going through a highly stressful period can affect one's fertility temporarily, but studies have shown that the impact is not long-term on the ability to conceive. For example, your menstrual cycle might become irregular during a stressful period, but it will return to normal as the tension subsides.
According to Dr. Shweta Shah, an accomplished gynecologist doctor in Malad, not only is it necessary to be physically fit, but a happy and healthy mentality is also necessary for conceiving a child. Your body is in sync with your mental health; it is wise and understands that having a baby during times of stress is not a good idea.
It is still debatable whether stress might directly impact your chances of conceiving. However, what is certain is some stress-related elements can make it more difficult to conceive.
What are the stress-related elements that impact fertility?
Stress can lead to unhealthy habits that have been shown to influence fertility, and they include:
- Irregular sleep
If you are going through immense stress, it will affect your sleeping habits, and lack of sleep can affect your health and fertility. Less sleep will also make you more tired and lower your desire to get intimate with your partner.
Dr. Shweta Shah, among the best gynecologists in Malad, cautions that lack of sleep can also cause irregular periods, a potential risk factor for fertility issues.
Following are ways to improve your sleep cycle:
- Follow a bedtime routine
- Avoid checking your email or working during bedtime
- Have a cup of a stress buster herbal tea right before bed
- Avoid caffeine past noon
- Do not keep your TV in the bedroom
- Unhealthy eating habits
When people are worried, they are more likely to eat unhealthy foods. Constant stress can cause you to put on a lot of weight, and being overweight and obese have been associated with fertility issues. On the other hand, you may end up losing your appetite when you are under a lot of stress.
Anyone seeking to conceive should be aware of their food and overall nutrition. You should aim for a well-balanced diet that includes whole grains, plenty of fruits and vegetables, protein, and healthy fats.
Some people use alcohol as a coping mechanism when they are stressed.
You are probably aware that smoking and drinking are major "no-nos" when trying to conceive. In pregnancy, no quantity of alcohol is completely safe. Be careful; do not drink while you are trying to conceive or while you are pregnant.
Consumption of alcoholic beverages regularly has also been shown to reduce sperm count. According to one study that looked at the impact of alcohol consumption on IVF success, for every additional drink a guy drank, his chances of having a live birth decreased by 2 to 8 times.
If you are one of the people who cope with stress by smoking, please understand that smoking or vaping can significantly influence fertility in both men and women. Of course, this is in addition to all the other terrible health consequences of smoking.
Women who smoke have an increased chance of obstructed fallopian tubes, cervical cancer, harm to the eggs in the ovaries, and miscarriage. Male smoking has been linked to a lower chance of IVF success and a higher risk of miscarriage. Secondhand smoke can also have a negative impact on fertility.
- Lowered libido
Sex is an essential aspect of conception for couples who are not using ART (assisted reproductive technologies) like IVF. It can also serve as a stress reliever.
Trying to keep up with life's pace, on the other hand, can make it difficult to find time for it, which, unfortunately, can make scheduling stressful—especially when trying to get pregnant. Furthermore, stress might reduce your sex drive, so you may not be in the mood.
If you or a loved one is considering going for IUI or IVF treatment in Malad, Mumbai, please visit Dr. Shweta Shah. She is a highly experienced infertility specialist and has helped many hopeful parents achieve their dream of having a baby.
Ways to manage stress
As we have understood, the consequences of stress can come in the way of your trying to get pregnant. Following are some tips to deal with stress and fertility problems to help you through your journey:
- Support and understand each other
- Find the time and ways to relax
- Work together as a team to combat the day-to-day pressures
- Acknowledge your fears and hopes
- Live for today, and be present in the moment
- Take a break, go on a relaxing vacation
- Prioritize yourself and stop worrying about what people say
- Watch light-hearted and feel-good movies together
- Keep some time aside to meditate
Although stress can not cause infertility directly, it can contribute to lifestyle choices that make it more challenging to conceive. Aside from the usual sources of stress, you may find that infertility is in itself a significant source of anxiety.
Consider speaking with a therapist to help you feel less overwhelmed. Therapy may not help you become pregnant directly, but it may reduce your stress levels, allowing you to adopt healthier lifestyle choices that will benefit your reproductive health. Do not let the stress of not conceiving get the better of you and your dream of having a child. Please get in touch with Dr. Shweta Shah, a top-notch gynecologist in Malad, for safe, reliable, and effective treatment options.