Affecting 1 in 6 couples, infertility is defined as the failure to conceive after 1 year of regular, unprotected intercourse. Maybe you’re curious about the main causes, signs, and symptoms of infertility.
In this article, we will discuss this serious matter and we also like to help you with what you should do in case you have trouble getting pregnant.
All About Infertility
Infertility is a common problem. It has been suggested that approximately 9% of couples are involuntarily childless. The rate of infertility is largely determined by the miscarriage rate. In most people, age is the most important determinant of the conception rate
There was a wide range of infertility rates, ranging from 3.5% to 16.7% in developed countries and from 6.9% to 9.3% in less developed countries, with a median overall prevalence of 9%, equating to more than 70 million women worldwide.
What are the main causes of infertility?
There are different kinds of factors that affect one’s fertility. Here are some of the widely known causes.
- Hypospadias – It is a common congenital anomaly, with a prevalence of 0.04% – 0.4%, and it results when the urethra opens into the ventral aspect of the penis at any point from the glans, down the shaft or even perineum.
- Undescended Testes (Cryptorchidism) – Boys with this condition have a 40% rate of epididymal and vassal abnormalities. These abnormalities may have resulted from the failure of testicular descent, ductal immaturity, or an abnormal hormonal environment.
- Testicular Cancer – It is a relatively rare type of cancer that occurs in the testicles, or testes.
- Orchitis – It is an inflammation of the testicles.
- Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) – Some examples of this condition are HIV, chlamydia, genital herpes, genital warts, gonorrhea, syphilis, and many more.
- Injuries – Trauma to the testes can result in permanent damage and also increase the risk of the subsequent production of anti-sperm antibodies.
- Occupational Factors – Men should be aware if they have to work in the presence of environmental toxins that can affect fertility. Some metals, such as lead, cadmium, and mercury are toxic to spermatogenesis.
- Drugs – Some drugs can have permanent effects on spermatogenesis.
- Chemotherapy and Radiotherapy – These treatments can be particularly damaging to gonadal function.
- Pelvic infection – This condition results in severe tubal damage in 10% – 30% of women after a first attack, 30% – 60% after a second attack, and 50% – 90% after a third attack.
- Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) – It is a hormonal disorder common among women of reproductive age as they have infrequent or prolonged menstrual periods or excess male hormone (androgen) levels. The ovaries may develop numerous small collections of fluid (follicles) and fail to regularly release eggs.
- Primary Ovarian Insufficiency (POI) – It is a condition in which a woman’s ovaries stop producing hormones and eggs at a young age. Women with this complication ovulate irregularly, if at all, and may have abnormal levels of ovarian and pituitary hormones due to problems with their ovaries.
- Endometriosis – It is an often painful disorder in which tissue that normally lines inside your uterus or the endometrium grows outside of it.
- Implantation failure – It refers to the failure of a fertilized egg to implant in the uterine wall to begin pregnancy.
- Endocrine disorders – Some examples of this condition are thyroid disease or problems with the hypothalamus, which affect the hormones produced by the body necessary for reproduction.
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Infertility?
Getting pregnant is not easy for some couples out there. They may experience various difficulties concerning their fertility. For you to be aware of this matter, here are the following signs and symptoms of this condition.
- Hormonal imbalances
- Erectile dysfunction
- Changes in testicles
- Heavy, long, or painful periods
- Dark or pale menstrual blood
- Irregular menstrual cycle
- Pain during sex
- Hormone changes
- Underlying medical conditions
- Smoking tobacco/marijuana
- Drinking alcohol
- Poor diet
What if I have one or more symptoms of infertility? Does it mean I can’t get pregnant anymore?
No. Studies have shown that having one or more symptoms does not mean that one is infertile. Most couples with infertility symptoms usually have hormonal changes in their bodies. They will eventually conceive with or without treatment.
Tips and Ways for You to Avoid Infertility
In this section, we are glad to provide you some effective tips and ways to avoid infertility and successfully become fertile according to an article from Healthline.
- Eat antioxidant-rich foods. Eat a bigger breakfast.
- Avoid trans fat.
- Cut down on carbs.
- Eat less refined carbs.
- Eat fiber-rich foods.
- Replace animal proteins with vegetable protein sources.
- Choose healthy high-fat dairy.
- Consider taking some multivitamins containing iron and folate or folic acid.
- Have a daily and moderate exercise.
- Have some time for self-care and relaxation.
- Avoid caffeine.
- Avoid overconsumption of alcohol.
Therefore, it is beneficial to consciously take care and maintain a healthy body to avoid having infertility. We hope that the aforementioned information will help you to get pregnant in the future. But first of all, seek help from a professional medical practitioner or fertility expert before doing anything else.