When you’re trying to conceive and are unsuccessful after months of intercourse without birth control, it’s time to talk to your doctor. After some basic assessments your doctor will likely refer you to a fertility doctor who specializes in Advanced Reproductive Technology, such as IVF.
For many couples it’s a little surreal and disheartening to go this route. However, there are many families who benefit from fertility treatment like IVF. If you have any of these seven signs, it might be time for you and your doctor to discuss IVF.
When Is it Time to Talk IVF?
If your struggle to conceive is leaving you and your partner concerned there may be something going on with your fertility it might be time to talk with your doctor about IVF. When you see a fertility specialist, you’re seeing someone who has expert knowledge of reproduction and treatment for infertility. Here we offer seven reasons you should discuss IVF with your fertility doctor.
- You’re Under 35 and Trying to Conceive With No Success After 1 Year
Most doctors agree this is the “red flag” of infertility. Fertile couples under 35 have a 20%-25% chance of conception each month they try. If the first month is unsuccessful, conception is likely in time.
After three months of intercourse without birth control, 57% of fertile couples are pregnant. After six months 72% conceived. And after 12 months 85% of couples get a positive pregnancy test.
If you are under 35 and you and your partner actively try to conceive for 12 months or more with no success contact your doctor.
- Over 35 And Trying For 6 Months
The closer a woman is to menopause the quality of her eggs declines. If you’re over 35 and haven’t been successful after six months of unprotected intercourse, it’s time to talk with your doctor. If you are 40 or over your odds of natural conception are much lower. Also, your age places you in the high-risk category which means you are at greater risk for miscarriage.
- You Have Irregular Periods, Heavy Periods or No Period At All
Each of the above symptoms are signs that you aren’t ovulating regularly, if at all. Without ovulating you can’t conceive. Here are the symptoms broken down:
- Irregular Periods: indicate the possibility of a hormonal imbalance or an ovulation disorder.
- Very Heavy Periods: If your period lasts longer than seven days or is so heavy you bleed through more than one tampon or pad and hour or you pass clots bigger than a quarter you experience what doctors define as a heavy period. An endocrine imbalance or uterine fibroid may be the cause but contact your physician.
- Bleeding Between Your Periods: If you bleed between periods or after intercourse, you may have a cervical lesion, polyp or fibroid in your uterus. Mention this to your doctor.
- No Period: For those who don’t have their period at all you may not be ovulating.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a common cause of ovulation issues. If you suspect you have PCOS talk to your doctor about your options.
- You Have a Chronic Medical Condition
There are certain medical conditions which impact your fertility. Cancer is the most obvious as treatment such as chemotherapy interrupts normal function of the ovaries. Here are some other conditions which wreak havoc on your fertility:
- Genetic Disorders
- Thyroid Condition
- Kidney Disease
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Heart Disease
Another issue that could cause fertility problems? If your biological mother experienced early menopause. Early menopause means the ovaries stop producing normal amounts of estrogen. This disrupts the regular release of eggs. There is a genetic link.
- You or Your Partner Have a History of STIs
Sexually transmitted infections cause inflammation in your pelvic region, including your reproductive organs. If you develop an infection, you may have scar tissue in your fallopian tubes which prevents your partner’s sperm and your egg form meeting. In men an STI may cause recurrent infections which interferes with sperm production, motility and function.
- You’ve Had Two or More Miscarriages
A miscarriage is a pregnancy loss before 20 weeks. The reason is usually due to a chromosomal abnormality in the embryo, which prevents normal development. A fertilized egg that fails implantation also causes miscarriage.
Two or more miscarriages may be indicative of a bigger issue. Talk to your doctor.
- Your Partner’s Sperm
Male factor infertility is at the root of between 30%-50% of infertility diagnoses. Any number of conditions affects your partner’s sperm’s motility (movement), count, production or delivery. Speak with your doctor about assessing your partner as well.
You Have Options
For those trying to conceive without success, the frustration is huge. If you and your partner are eager to start your family and it just isn’t happening, contact LA IVF and together let’s find out your options.