Infertility: 10 Common Myths Debunked

As more couples are turning to fertility clinics to try and conceive, it is important to separate fertility myths from the facts. The conflicting information about what to eat and wear or how to exercise can make anyone question what fact is and what is fiction. Read on to know about this.
fertility

There are many myths involved with infertility, which are so widespread that most people perceive them as hard cold facts

Infertility affects nearly 15 per cent of the Indian population, and the number is only increasing every year.
According to experts, late marriages, stressful lifestyles, obesity, high junk food intake, smoking, alcohol intake, and drug addiction contribute to the problem.
Also, with a significant rise in cases, infertility has become a personal and public health issue in India. Infertility not only causes financial and emotional stress for couples but also brings social stigma, which becomes a big cause of concern.

What is infertility?

Infertility is defined as the inability of a couple with normal sexual relations to conceive after a year of trying. Infertility can affect anyone, but there are many treatment options available for people who wish to begin or expand their family.
However, there are many myths involved with the condition, which are so widespread that most people perceive them as hard cold facts backed by scientific evidence.
Let us shed some light on some of these misconceptions:

Myth

Certain sexual positions increase pregnancy chances.

Fact

There is no scientific evidence that any particular sexual position is more effective for conception than another. According to Dr. Nisha Bhatnagar, MD (ObGyn), Medical Director of Infinite Fertility, “The most important factor is the timing of intercourse about ovulation.”
Dr. Bhatnagar said more than the position you have sex in, timing your intercourse during a fertile window is most effective when you are trying to conceive.

Myth

Freezing your eggs is of no use as they age as well.

Fact

Once you have frozen your eggs they stay at the same age and maintain the same quality as when they were frozen. 1

Myth

The impact of stress on fertility is just a myth.

Fact

Stress has a horrific impact on your physical as well as mental health, especially when you are trying to conceive. “Stress can interfere with the hormonal balance that regulates ovulation and sperm production, as well as reduce sexual desire and performance,” Dr. Bhatnagar added.
Research has shown that women with a history of depression are twice as likely to experience infertility.
Anxiety also can prolong the time needed to achieve pregnancy.

Myth

Wearing tight underwear or pants causes infertility in men

Fact

False. Wearing tight-fitting underwear or pants can increase the scrotal temperature which needs to be 3-4 degrees below the normal human body temperature of 98.6°F for fertility factors.
However, there is no scientific evidence stating tight clothing causes infertility.

Myth

Extracting eggs for egg freezing is a long and painful process.

Fact

Egg extraction is a simple process that takes only around five minutes and leaves no mark or scar after the procedure is completed.

Myth

Age affects only women's fertility.

Fact

According to Dr. Bhatnagar, affects the chances of conceiving naturally in both men and women equally. “Women's fertility declines with age due to the decrease in the number and quality of eggs. Men's fertility also declines with age due to the decrease in sperm quality and motility, as well as the increase in genetic abnormalities in both egg and sperm,” she said.

Myth

Infertility is always a woman's problem.

Fact

Infertility is a medical condition that affects both men and women equally. According to the World Health Organization, around 30 per cent of infertility cases are due to female factors, 30 per cent are attributed to males, 20 per cent are because of combined factors, and the rest 20 per cent are unexplained.

Myth

Hormonal injections during the fertility process lead to permanent weight gain

Fact:

According to Dr. Bhatnagar, during the process, you might feel a bit bloated, “but it is just temporary and will pass once the medications have stopped.”

Myth

You can boost your fertility by eating certain foods or taking supplements.

Fact

There is no magic food or supplement that can guarantee pregnancy. However, eating a balanced diet that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, healthy fats, and dairy products can help improve your overall health and fertility. Some nutrients that are especially important for fertility are folic acid, iron, zinc, selenium, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, and antioxidants.
Certain foods that can harm your body should be completely avoided, like trans fats, processed meats, refined carbohydrates, added sugars, caffeine, alcohol, and tobacco.

Myth

You will have to take bed rest if you opt for egg freezing or IVF.

Fact

There is no need for any bed rest when it comes to egg freezing or IVF, after the extraction you can go about your day with ease.
Bed rest affects the success rate negatively.
End of Article
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