Trying for a baby has become increasingly difficult for many couples, and it is not only affecting women in their forties. Now that you have decided to start a family or try for number two or three, it may not be as easy or as quick as you thought. Irregular menstrual cycles, unexplained infertility, lack of ovulation, polycystic ovaries and poor sperm quality or sperm count are some of many factors contributing to fertility problems. You may be facing a barrage of tests to possibly discover the cause, and waiting month after month to be pregnant. This can be an emotional roller-coaster, consuming and overwhelming for any couple. Infertility is on the rise, with one in six couples in Australia struggling with fertility issues.
There is hope – prepare for pregnancy. Preconception health care, is increasingly being shown to be an essential start to pregnancy for every couple and both prospective parents. That’s right, it’s not just about focusing on the female body. For healthy fertility, it takes two, and there needs to be a focus on both the male and female. Especially considering there are many male factors influencing difficulties conceiving as well as miscarriage rates. Healthy sperm are essential for fertilisation to take place successfully and can also promote optimal birth outcomes.
You might be wondering, what’s the point in preparing for pregnancy or believe you don’t have the time to make any changes. Every day in clinic I see the positive impact that investing in your health provides my fertility couples. Improving your health has significant benefits for fertility, optimises the chances of conception, a healthy pregnancy and the future health of your child. Whilst giving you the best possible chance of success. You have so much to gain when you prepare and set the foundations for your child’s blueprint.
Your health in the lead up to pregnancy can greatly affect your fertility. You and your partner need to have optimal health to provide your bodies with the appropriate building blocks needed to make your healthiest baby possible. Each month, you get one shot in a 24 hour window, with one egg and one sperm, and that DNA is the instruction manual for every single cell. Fertility and reproductive health face many challenges today. From increasing environmental toxic exposure, nutritional deficiency, along with the problems of stress and advancing age for many prospective parents.
Without a doubt, pre-conception care is such a valuable time for couples to invest in preparing for pregnancy and to become their healthiest. These months help to create the healthiest eggs, sperm and environment possible for a healthy pregnancy, and also investigate any minor or major obstacles getting in the way. Every day in clinic I see how powerful and life changing our work can be, and to be part of such a precious journey is wonderful. As a mother of two children, when I work with fertility patients, the thought of optimising their health and fertility, always makes me want to do a happy dance. Their journey may not always be easy, but it is wonderful to hear the words: “I’m pregnant “and then “We’ve had our baby.”
It is never too early to start preparing. Understandably, most couples are keen to conceive as quickly as possible. Optimising your health, implementing improvements and maximising your fertility takes time to be effective. Healthy eggs and sperm take around 120 days to develop. That’s why it’s recommended to start preconception care a minimum of four months prior to “trying” to increase your chance of success. As well as providing time to identify, address and improve any general health, reproductive, lifestyle, toxicity and environmental issues that may affect your fertility. It also ensures your body has optimal nutrition and supply of all those factors essential to the health of eggs and sperm, healthy conception and foetal development, and an absence of all those things which have shown to be harmful, including stress and toxins. Being healthy and preparing your body in the lead up to pregnancy is so important. The rewards these months of preparation to make your healthiest baby can offer you are well worth your commitment, and extend far beyond nine months – they last a lifetime.
By improving your health, you create a stronger and healthier environment to increase your chances of getting that positive test result of you becoming pregnant, whether naturally or assisted. Either way, you still need a healthy body, healthy eggs and sperm for even IVF to be successful.
Wishing you all the very best on your fertility journey.
Naturopath & Conception Connector