Is It Time To See A Fertility Specialist?

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With the new statistics coming out about fertility rates dropping that you may have been hearing about, you might be wondering if you are one of the ones that may be affected. Reproductive problems are rising in both males and females at about 1% per year in the US, with the birth rate being the lowest it has been in more than three decades in the United States.

We used to perceive fertility issues as a women’s issue, but in fact it is affecting both males and females. Sperm counts and testosterone levels have been found to be dramatically lower than they were a couple decades ago, while testicular cancer, erectile dysfunction, and miscarriages are increasing at about 1% per year.

With 1 in 6 couples diagnosed with infertility, this is causing many couples to seek out fertility help, and those that have needed it have increased by 5-10 percent per year. These statistics can cause alarm to anyone who is trying to start or add onto their family, so let’s take a look at some things to know before you seek out fertility help.

How Long Have You Been Trying To Conceive?

I think something many women do not talk about is how long it took them to conceive. We should start normalizing the fact that it is not like the magic we were once told when we were in middle school that through intercourse, you will immediately become pregnant. It is actually pretty common for it to take several months to get pregnant, so if you are not getting pregnant right away, don’t panic! The best thing you can do is to track your cycle.

There are so many free apps that you can download to help you track your cycle. In addition to tracking your menstrual cycle, try using ovulation strips. These will tell you when the peak of your fertile window is.

Painful Periods

Unfortunately many women have become victims of improper diagnosis of endometriosis. On average, women will suffer through endometriosis for ten years before being diagnosed. Endometriosis will be the cause of nearly half of women who are infertile. The reason why it takes so long to properly diagnose, is because the only sure way to tell that a woman is suffering from endometriosis is through in depth uterine lining testing, or through laparoscopic surgery.

Women who suffer from this experience severe cramping in the uterus, and often the doctor will dismiss these cramps as ordinary period cramps. Another sign of endometriosis is cramping even when you are not on your period. If you suffer from debilitating cramps, endometriosis is something I strongly suggest researching further. Often, your typical OB will not be trained in or properly educated on the subject, unfortunately. This would be something a fertility specialist should be consulted about in order to be properly diagnosed.

Irregular Periods or None At All

Women who suffer from PCOS also suffer from infertility. Some signs of PCOS are very irregular periods. This means, you might go months without a period, or you could have a period that will last much longer than a week at a time. They do not seem to ever be consistent from month to month. Another symptom of PCOS that women experience is facial hair growth, and difficulty in losing or maintaining weight. If these are something you experience, it might be worth it to seek a second opinion from an OB for further testing. PCOS is a lot easier to diagnose than endometriosis.

Seeking a Functional and Integrative Medicine Clinic

If you do not feel like endometriosis or PCOS are issues that you may be experiencing, yet you are still having difficulty conceiving, the good news is that the problem may be fixable without needing IVF. Invitro-fertilization is incredibly expensive and something many couples are not able to afford. Unfortunately, these clinics are willing to take your money quickly without actually trying to solve your fertility issues.

Using a holistic approach by seeking a doctor at a functional medical clinic is a great option for any women who are experiencing issues in trying to conceive. This is a great route to start with, so that hopefully your issues can be resolved without needing to use thousands of dollars worth of drugs and procedures just to become pregnant. These doctors are trained to look at each woman’s history and individual issues and look for the root cause so that they can properly solve the problem.

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