A miscarriage is one of the most difficult situations a couple can experience. Both parents are left in unimaginable pain and grief. In addition, it can lead to many questions and wondering what went wrong and why the pregnancy didn’t take. However, it can be even worse if there is a situation of several miscarriages.

What Causes a Miscarriage?

Miscarriages are described as the loss of a pregnancy prior to the 20th week. In many instances, the woman might not even realize she is pregnant because she might miscarry before she has even missed her menstrual period. Generally, however, around 15 to 25 percent of known pregnancies end in a miscarriage. Over 80 percent of those occur within the first trimester. A miscarriage can occur after the 20th week of pregnancy, but those are rare.

The majority of miscarriages occur because of chromosomal abnormalities that are not inherited by either parent but that abruptly develop in the unborn baby. Most often, the miscarriage occurs because the baby would not be able to survive. Miscarriages can occur for other reasons as well. They are as follows:

• Hormonal problems
• Uterine abnormalities
• Immune system responses
• Infection
• Diabetes or thyroid conditions in the mother
• Physical problems in the mother
• Being over 35
• Problems with the cervix
• Recurrent miscarriages (three or more)

Are Multiple Miscarriages a Sign of Infertility?

Sadly, approximately four percent of couples end up experiencing recurrent miscarriages. At this point, miscarriage and fertility become a worrisome issue. However, there is hope because there are options for these couples that can help them to conceive and go on to enjoy a healthy pregnancy.

Anyone who has experienced multiple miscarriages will want to get support and answers to their numerous questions. Medicine has advanced considerably over the years and there is the option of infertility and genetic testing that can help couples to regain control over their fertility.

Testing Available for Couples Who Experience Miscarriage

There are certain tests available for couples who have experienced miscarriage. These are as follows:

Genetic Karyotype: Couples who have experienced several miscarriages, generally three or more, who are considering trying to conceive naturally or through in-vitro fertilization (IVF), should consider this type of test. Genetic karyotype testing checks for chromosomal abnormalities that can present the risk of miscarriage and a baby being born with a genetic issue.
PGS (Preimplantation Genetic Screening): This type of test is recommended for people who have a high risk due to a family history of genetic problems like cystic fibrosis or fertility issues and have a history of recurrent miscarriages. It can check for healthy embryos for couples who plan on using IVF so that the embryos can implant and develop in a normal and healthy manner.
Fetal Tissue Testing: This type of testing is done on the fetal tissue after a miscarriage. It is done to determine why the pregnancy didn’t develop and progress normally and can bring couples some answers. It is recommended for couples who have no known risks for miscarriage. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always result in a conclusive answer.

Solutions for Infertility

When it is discovered that you have a correlation with miscarriage and infertility, you can seek help from your doctor to conceive and have a normal, healthy pregnancy. Couples have the following options:

Artificial Insemination: The sperm is inserted into the woman through a tube, which helps with conception when there are issues like low sperm count or problems with cervical mucus. It is frequently used with a medication known as Clomid.
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART): ART is done by removing the woman’s eggs and directly fertilizing them with her partner’s sperm. After fertilization, one or more embryos are inserted into the woman.
In-Vitro Fertilization (IVF): IVF is a type of ART, but multiple embryos are placed inside the woman.

Remember, if you have experienced miscarriage and infertility, it’s important to not lose hope. There are options that can help you to have the family of which you’ve always dreamed.

mother's day infertility

Mother’s Day is bittersweet when you are struggling with infertility. On one hand, you want to celebrate all of the mothers in your life. Yet, you also find that this day dredges up some difficult emotions. As this special day draws near, use these coping strategies to shower the women in your life with love while also taking care of yourself.

Start The Day With Self-Care
Waking up on Mother’s Day is difficult when you long for a family of your own. Begin your morning by doing what makes you feel best. Perform a few yoga stretches, treat yourself to breakfast in bed or go for a walk. Investing a few minutes of your morning on taking care of yourself will give you a better perspective before you start celebrating the mothers in your world.

Reach Out For Support
One of the hardest things about dealing with infertility is that your struggles are often invisible to the rest of the world. Consider talking to your mother today about what you are really going through, or you could reach out to someone else who is also struggling with infertility. Finding a listening ear allows you to vent your painful emotions while benefiting from knowing that someone out there understands.

Choose How You Spend The Day
There is no rule that says that you have to be a smiling participant at every Mother’s Day event. If you know that the day will be difficult, consider taking your mom out for lunch the day before or after. Alternatively, you can recruit your partner or support person to attend your family’s Mother’s Day event so that they can soothe your emotions if you become overwhelmed. It is also okay to cut your attendance at these events short or just stay home if you are dealing with raw emotions.

Find Ways To Laugh
Laughter truly is the best medicine, and you can find ways to distract yourself with a little humor. Head to your local comedy club for brunch, or find a hilarious comedy on a movie channel that you know will make you laugh. Alternatively, you could invite a group of your single girlfriends over for a silly makeover session. Whatever you choose, make sure that it is lighthearted and fun so that they day flies by with humor.

Indulge In Some Pampering
Who says that mothers should get all the love on this day? Everyone woman deserves to be celebrated for their caring nature, and spending a little extra time on yourself reminds you that you are also important. Run a luxurious bubble bath, schedule a massage or go for that new hairstyle. You’ll feel better both inside and out.

This year, don’t let Mother’s Day leave you feeling burdened by the pain of infertility. Surround yourself with family and friends who understand what you are going through, and remember that reaching out to others is better than wallowing in self-pity. By being willing to practice a little self-care, you can make it through this day while emerging stronger and with a better support system in place.

questions to ask your fertility doctor

National Infertility Awareness Week was just last week. This purpose of this campaign was to encourage people who have been battling infertility to seek help from a doctor. It also encourages them to seek the support of their family members and friends. Additionally, people are encouraged to ask their insurance company if they will cover infertility treatments. It is important to note that infertility is a common problem. It is estimated that 15 percent of couples are battling infertility.

Questions to Ask Your Fertility Doctor

When you’re ready to take the leap, consider these important questions to ask your fertility doctor during a consultation.

  1. What are some of the reasons we have been unable to conceive?
  2. What treatments should we try first?
  3. What is the success rate of these treatments?
  4. How many times do people have to try this treatment before it works?
  5. What medical tests do I need to get before I get this treatment?
  6. What are the short-term side effects of this treatment? Are there any long-term complications?
  7. Will we provided with a psychologist if we choose a sperm or egg donor?
  8. Do we have access to egg donors, sperm donors, or surrogates through this fertility clinic?

If you are in an LGBT relationship, then there are additional questions to ask your fertility doctor.

  1. Can you recommend an attorney to me who has experience in family law in the LGBT community?
  2. Will you work with the donor agency and reproductive attorney that I already have?
  3. How many gay patients do you have?
  4. What options do I have that will allow both partners to be physically-involved in the process? Is there a way to make sure that both parents are biologically-related to the child?

You should not hesitate to ask your doctor any of these questions about infertility and the potential treatments. The more you know about infertility, the easier it will be for you to get it treated.

national infertility awareness week

Did you know that 1 in 8 couples struggle with infertility? Even though it’s a common issue affecting many people throughout the world, infertility doesn’t get the awareness it deserves. An astounding 15 percent of all couples in the country struggle with creating a family. Some consider infertility unimportant, but infertility needs to be considered a subject of compassion and education. With National Infertility Awareness Week fast approaching, those struggling with infertility and those who support them have created a movement aimed at removing all barriers that stand in the way of building families.

What is infertility?

Infertility is defined as the inability to naturally conceive a child. It does not discriminate on sexuality, economic status, religion, or race. If after 12 months of unprotected sex one cannot conceive, you are considered infertile. On average, a third of all cases can be traced back to the woman, a third of all cases can be traced back to the man, and the other third of all cases are because of both partners or a cause cannot be found.

Medical technology has come a long way, especially in recent decades. Those who specialize in infertility can now help determine the root of the cause and help those who suffer with infertility in tremendous ways. Treatments for infertility are available to both men and women, including various surgeries, drugs, and assisted reproductive technology.

What is National Infertility Awareness Week (NIAW)?

National Infertility Awareness Week was founded by Resolve, The National Infertility Association. Resolve is a non-profit organization whose goal is to help improve the lives of the many men and women affected by infertility. They provide free support programs in areas all over the country, assist in raising awareness on the issue, and works hard to protect the rights and legal access of every family they work with.

NIAW is April 23-29, 2017. This year, Resolve’s theme is “Listen Up!”. Their campaign was created for anyone who cares about the infertility community can feel endowed to make a difference. NIAW wants people to understand how infertility affects people and their families. By joining the movement, people can help create a community in which infertility is supported with compassion and help.

Resolve urges people to join their movement during NIAW to help in any way they can; getting involved in their communities, supporting friends and families who suffer with infertility, and supporting policies and legislations that stop anti-family laws.

What can you do to help?

This National Infertility Awareness Week, there are many ways to get involved. Resolve hosts many events at local and national levels in which they urge people to get involved with. They ask that you show compassion and support to anyone you know or don’t know who suffers with infertility. Addressing an issue is the first step in finding acceptance and help among others. Start the conversation and donate your time to help even one person deal with their infertility.

National Infertility Awareness Week is a necessary step in finding more tolerance and help among the infertility community and beyond. While infertility has come a long way in recent decades, it’s still a subject most people are uncomfortable with. But with so many people around the world suffering with this issue, what are we so afraid to talk about? It’s time to broach the subject and offer help to the many people trying to build a family.

improve fertility

National Infertility Awareness Week is April 23 to April 29. It is estimated that 10 percent of couples struggle with infertility. Not being able to conceive can be frustrating for the couple. Fortunately, many couples have been able to improve fertility after making a few changes in their lifestyle.

Maintain a Healthy Weight

Your weight can have a positive or negative affect on your ability to conceive. Studies have shown that underweight women take four times as long to conceive. Women who are underweight can take twice as long to conceive. Weight problems can lead to irregular ovulation, which makes it harder to conceive. If you are underweight, then you can increase your chances of conceiving by gaining five pounds. Likewise, you can improve fertility if you lose five to 10 pounds if you are overweight.

Stop Smoking

Women who smoke are less likely to get pregnant. Women are also less likely to conceive if they have a partner who smokes. Tobacco use can damage sperm and egg. It can also increase the risk of miscarriage.

Supplement Use

There are a number of vitamins that can boost your fertility. The B vitamins can help stimulate ovulation. Folic acid, which is a type of B vitamin, is not only important for conceiving, but it also helps prevent defects in women who are already pregnant. Vitamin D is another supplement that can boost your chances of conceiving. Studies have shown that women who are infertile have lower vitamin D levels.

Vitamin D helps promote regular ovulation. It also helps the body produce sex hormones. Additionally, you can take vitamin C. This nutrient helps prevent progesterone production. Progesterone helps regulate the menstrual cycle.

Stay Calm

Stress can make it more difficult to conceive by increasing cortisol production. Cortisol can cause hormonal imbalances. Stress can also make it harder for you to be intimate with your partner.

infertility emotionalExperiencing infertility can be like riding a roller coaster that you can’t get off. The ups and downs keep coming on a regular (or not-so-regular) basis as couples plan for ovulation, endure the two-week wait, experience the sadness and frustration of a negative pregnancy test result, then pick themselves back up to try again. For couples in fertility treatment, there is the added stress of new procedures, hormone treatments, doctor visits, endless scans, and significant financial speculation. (read more…)

We live in the age of information. For any given subject, there is a plethora of data at our fingertips. Unfortunately, not all of it is factual. This is especially true when examining fertility, and more specifically- infertility. Infertility is a very complex thing and while there are some truths about this subject, some are only old wives’ tales. Because of its complex nature there is a lot of confusion. Let’s examine a few myths about fertility. (read more…)

preserving fertilityWomen that are being treated for cancer may have questions about preserving their fertility if they haven’t had children yet or are planning to have children in the future. It is important to know how cancer treatment will affect fertility as well as preservation steps that can be done before starting cancer treatment. (read more…)