Reasons to Consider Surrogacy

Infertility can be heartbreaking for couples who want children. But infertility is far from rare. One in every eight couples has a hard time getting pregnant or sustaining a healthy pregnancy.

If you and your partner are struggling with infertility, you don’t have to give up your dream of having your own family. There are numerous options available to you. One of these options is surrogacy.

If you and your partner choose to grow your family through a surrogate pregnancy, another woman – called a surrogate – will carry your baby to term. You will be able to get to know the surrogate, and perhaps form a lifelong bond, while she is pregnant. A surrogate pregnancy can be a wonderful way for infertile couples to have their own child. Here are five reasons you and your partner may want to consider using a surrogate.

1. Surrogacy lets you fulfill your dream of growing your family.
First and foremost, a surrogate pregnancy gives you and your partner a healthy baby to raise. If you’ve always dreamed of having a child of your own, or if you want to give the children you already have a sibling, a surrogate pregnancy may be a simpler and more reliable choice than fertility treatments.

2. You can be involved with a surrogate pregnancy.
Unlike adoption, a surrogate pregnancy lets you stay involved with your little bundle of joy from the very beginning. You’ll be able to get to know your surrogate personally, and she’ll tell you about how the pregnancy is coming along. You can go to doctor’s appointments with your surrogate, and you can even be there when your baby is born.

3. The fertile parent can be biologically related to the child.
If you and your partner are both infertile, you may not be able to be biologically related to your surrogate baby. In a case like this, you would probably use the surrogate’s own egg and sperm from a sperm donor. If either of you is fertile, though, it is possible for the surrogate mother to carry the fertile parent’s egg or sperm.

4. You’ll be able to raise your baby from day one.
When you adopt a baby, you probably won’t be able to raise it from the day of its birth. When you choose a surrogate pregnancy, though, you’ll be able to hold your baby when it’s only a few minutes old. Your surrogate baby will be part of your family from the very beginning.

5. You’ll have peace of mind.
Surrogate mothers are carefully chosen. To qualify as a surrogate, a woman must have had at least one successful pregnancy in the past, and she must pass a psychological examination to prove she’s mentally healthy. Surrogate mothers also receive excellent health care and counseling throughout their pregnancy. All in all, when you choose to use a surrogate, you’ll know that your baby has the best possible odds of growing healthy and strong.

Surrogacy isn’t the right choice for everyone, but for many infertile couples, it’s the best way to have a healthy, well-loved child. If you and your partner are weighing your options for having a baby of your own, a surrogate pregnancy might be the perfect way to grow your family.

Posted in Uncategorized

Staying Positive After A Miscarriage

Pregnancy is supposed to be the happiest time of a woman’s life and of a couple’s relationship. Sadly, for some, the pregnancy doesn’t make it to full term, resulting in a miscarriage. This can be the result of a myriad of medical conditions. Modern medicine is advancing daily to successfully reduce the chances of a miscarriage, but there are aspects of this devastating loss which too often go untreated. There is an emotional trauma that settles over the couple, especially the woman, during the aftermath.

When this tragedy befalls a woman, it is only natural that she goes through the five stages of grief. These stages are denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance. During this time, it is important to keep a strong support system of family and friends to help share in the pain. You don’t have to carry it alone. You have people who love and care for you. Depression can be the most difficult of these stages since it is the last one to endure before acceptance.

Recovering from depression can take time, but you will see the bright days ahead. There are different options available to treat depression. The most common option is to take antidepressants. If you’d rather try a more natural treatment for your depression, you can also sign yourself up for sessions of psychotherapy to help you cope with your emotions.

During this difficult time, it is also common to feel stressed. A stillbirth can be classified as a traumatic event that causes extreme stress. If you find yourself feeling highly stressed or suffering from anxiety attacks, it would be beneficial to seek professional counseling. Sharing your feelings with family and friends can help immensely as well. Some healthy activities to help you cope and relieve stress would be yoga classes, jogging, taking up a creative hobby, or learning an instrument.

While you’re dealing with all of the stress and grief, it’s easy to neglect yourself. Almost all women who miscarry begin to blame themselves and succumb to a feeling of failure. This results in low self-esteem and refraining from self-care. It is important to know that you are not to blame. This tragedy does not diminish your value as a person, as a woman, or as a partner. You should do something for yourself at least once a day to keep your spirits lifted and learn to love and cherish yourself again.

A miscarriage doesn’t just affect the woman. It can also affect the partner. They also lost a child. It is crucial not to lose sight of the love you have for one another. Surviving a stillbirth requires the communication and presence of both partners. Don’t repress your emotions. You need to share during this difficult time. Cry to one another, lean on one another, and, most importantly, grieve together to properly heal.

On the journey of life, there will be many difficult times. Some times won’t just be difficult. They’ll be devastatingly traumatic. No matter how dark of times you encounter, always remember that as long as there is life in you, there is hope.

Posted in Uncategorized

PCOS And Infertility

Polycystic ovary syndrome is one of the leading causes of infertility and affects up to 10 percent of women of childbearing age. It is a hormonal disorder that is characterized by many tiny cysts on the ovaries. The hormonal issues that come with the disorder can interfere with ovulation, egg health and implantation. The cause of PCOS remains unknown.

What Are The Symptoms Of Polycystic Ovary Syndrome?

While some women with the disorder experience multiple symptoms, others may not. Some report persistent feelings of depression or anxiety. Affected women often experience irregular and long cycles. Some women have only one or two menses per year. They usually have anovulatory cycles but may experience heavy periods. Many women notice extra body or facial hair. However, male-pattern baldness is present in several cases. Acne is also a common symptom. These problems are usually due to an excess of androgens, which are male hormones. A large percentage of women with polycystic ovaries are overweight due to hormonal imbalances.

How Is The Disorder Diagnosed?

Although some physicians are quick to diagnose women with missed periods or trouble conceiving with polycystic ovary syndrome, proper testing must be conducted to rule out other issues or identify underlying problems that worsen the condition. For example, some women who are diagnosed with polycystic ovaries have hyperthyroidism. Others are resistant to insulin. Both problems can be identified through blood tests and can be treated with medication. By identifying an underlying problem and treating it, your symptoms may be reduced considerably. In addition to testing hormones, doctors use ultrasound imaging to look for multiple tiny cysts on the ovaries.

How Effective Are Fertility Treatments With PCOS?

Regulating ovulation is the best way to maximize your ability to conceive if your periods are sporadic. The good news is that many women who are diagnosed with polycystic ovaries go on to have healthy pregnancies with proper treatment. If you are overweight, losing weight is usually recommended before starting fertility treatments to optimize success. Medications that help balance your hormones often make it easier to lose weight.

Most doctors treat infertility with an ovarian stimulation drug such as clomiphene to induce ovulation. It is effective in regulating ovulation in about 80 percent of women with polycystic ovary syndrome, and about 40 percent of those who ovulate with it also conceive. However, letrozole works for many women who have the disorder and cannot conceive with clomiphene. Your doctor may prescribe metformin with a fertility drug if you are resistant to insulin. If additional factors are affecting your fertility, injectable gonadotropins may be prescribed.

When drugs are unsuccessful, your doctor can perform a hysterosalpingogram to see if there are also uterine abnormalities or tubal issues contributing to infertility. Although IVF is often a last resort, it has a good success rate for helping women with polycystic ovaries conceive. Our compassionate staff will be happy to discuss more options with you.

Posted in PCOS, Uncategorized

Boost Your Man’s Fertility With These Tips

Tips For Male Infertility

When we think of infertility, we often think of it as a women’s issue. However, many times, the infertility issue lies within the male. Don’t ever lose hope, because there are steps you can take to boost male fertility. It is a common problem, and it is nothing to be embarrassed about. more importantly, it should not be ignored. Read on for tips on how to boost male fertility, and be one step closer to starting the family that you’ve always dreamed of.

Increasing Sperm Count

Some men suffer from low sperm count without knowing it. Low sperm count is considered anything below 40 million per cubic centimeter. Sometimes, the cause is something simple, such as regular hot baths, spending long periods of time in a hot tub, sitting for long periods of time, or wearing tight fitting underwear. Alcohol and street drugs can also cause low sperm count. The cause may also be slightly more complex, such as radiation or prescription drugs. Discuss your lifestyle with your doctor and see if he or she can help determine the cause.

Eat Healthy

A poor diet can contribute to low sperm count. Make sure you are including lean proteins, fresh fruits and vegetables, and low-fat dairy into your diet each day. Avoid coffee and other beverages that contain caffeine. Balance your diet by avoiding refined carbohydrates, and artificial ingredients.

Hit The Gym

Regular exercise can help boost male fertility. You don’t have to spend hours at the gym, but make sure to exercise moderately about 3-5 times per week for at least an hour. Weight training helps increase sperm count and adding cardio to your workout routine helps maintain your ideal weight, another factor in boosting male fertility.

Be Mindful of Electronic Use

Most men carry their phones in their pockets without giving it a second thought. They might sit on the couch with their laptop without thinking twice about it. But, what they don’t realize is that they are hurting their fertility. Wi-Fi signals are damaging to sperm count and structure, so think twice before you put your phone in your pocket each day.

Take Vitamins

A multi vitamin each day can help increase sperm function. Make sure you are taking a vitamin that contains folic acid and vitamins C, D, and E for best results.

Think About Your Stress Levels

Constant high stress can lead to low sperm count. Take some time and think about your lifestyle and daily activities. Are you constantly under pressure at work? Talk you your boss about ways to reduce your stress. Are there other aspects of your life that are stressful? Find ways to manage the stress. Take necessary steps to relax and calm down. It is extremely helpful when trying to conceive.

Male infertility is an issue that is all too common, yet can be treated. Take the steps toward adopting a healthy lifestyle, and don’t hesitate to talk to your doctor for additional help.

Posted in Improve your Fertility

Myths About Female Aging and Infertility

While we know that fertility naturally declines with age, misinformation about the link between aging and infertility can lead to confusion. Women who are trying to conceive need to know the truth behind these five female aging and infertility myths.

1. Women don’t need to worry about fertility until they’re in their 40s.
In fact, egg supply begins to decline rapidly as early as the 20s, with a steep drop-off after age 35. Not only does a woman have fewer eggs in her 30s, they also begin to decline in quality, increasing the risk for birth defects and other complications. Research published in the journal Human Reproduction found that women have about a 20 percent chance of getting pregnant naturally each month at age 30, and just a 5 percent chance at age 40.

2. Most women can get pregnant easily.
When you’re trying unsuccessfully to conceive, it might seem like babies and pregnant women are everywhere. However, about 1 in 10 couples struggle with infertility, and the inability to conceive is more common as fertility declines with age.

3. Age only affects a women’s fertility.
While it’s true that we usually talk about women when it comes to age-related infertility, men also experience an age-related decline in the ability to conceive. Their sperm volume and motility begins to drop at age 40, reducing the chances of conception each month.

4. Women who have already had a baby will have no trouble conceiving after 35.
One successful pregnancy is unfortunately not a predictor of a subsequent successful pregnancy. Age-related decline affects those who have already had children at the same rate it does women who are attempting to conceive a first pregnancy.

5. Regardless of age, women should try to conceive naturally for a year before seeking medical help.
The older you are, the more important it is to seek treatment for infertility sooner rather than later. Most doctors recommend seeing a specialist if you are older than 35 and have been trying unsuccessfully to get pregnant for six or more months, or right away if you’ve had two or more miscarriages at any age.

Posted in Infertility

7 Natural Foods That Prevent Infertility

Infertility is a problem that affects 10 to 15 percent of couples. Fortunately, one of the ways that you can prevent infertility is by changing your diet. There are a number of healthy foods that can boost your fertility.

Fresh Fruits

Fresh fruits are filled with Vitamin C. This nutrient has been shown to improve sperm count and quality. It can also help increase progesterone production. Progesterone is a female hormone that builds up the uterine lining in order to prepare for a pregnancy. Oranges, lemons and mangoes are examples of some of the foods that are high in vitamin C.

Beans

Beans are a great plant source of protein. There was a study done that involved 19,000 female nurses who were trying to conceive. The study showed that the nurses who had the highest intake of animal protein were less likely to conceive. However, plant-based protein increased the nurses’ chances of conceiving.

Nuts

Nuts are a great source of vitamin E. They can also help prevent infertility. Vitamin E improves female sex drive. It can also reduce the risk of miscarriage.

Leafy Greens

Leafy Greens are high in folate. This is a B vitamin that can help stimulate ovulation. It can also improve sperm quality. Furthermore, it can reduce the risk of miscarriages and genetic problems in the baby.

Eggs

Eggs are another great source of folate. They are also high in vitamin B12. Additionally, eggs have carotenoids that can boost female fertility.

Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are a great source of non-heme iron. This is a type of iron that is found in plant-based foods. One study showed that people who took an iron supplement, which is a form of non-heme iron, were 40 percent less likely to have problems conceiving.

Olive Oil

Olive oil can reduce inflammation. It can also improve insulin sensitivity. Inflammation can interfere with ovulation and conception. It can also interfere with fetal development.

Posted in Improve your Fertility, Uncategorized

Does Caffeine Impact Fertility?

Women trying to conceive might be able to increase their chances of getting pregnant by putting down that cup of coffee. Studies show that too much caffeine can make it harder to conceive, while reducing caffeine intake can increase fertility. While scientists don’t know for sure how much caffeine is too much, they know that reducing caffeine can increase chances of conception.

Researchers say that drinking three cups of coffee a day is on par with regular smoking in terms of what it does for fertility. They say that even one cup of coffee per day can decrease chances of fertility by as much as fifty percent. While experts seem to think that small amounts of caffeine don’t seem to make a difference, as soon as those amounts are significant, it can be harder to get pregnant. Experts say that the prudent thing to do is to avoid caffeine when you’re trying to have a baby. They also say to taper caffeine use in order to avoid symptoms of withdraw that may include irritability and nervousness.

Why is this the case?

Caffeine is a stimulant to the nervous system. However, it also affects other parts of the body. It increases a person’s heart rate and metabolism. Researchers say that when the mother consumes large amounts of caffeine, an egg doesn’t mature as quickly or with the same health as it might otherwise. Although they’re not sure, they suspect that this reduction in egg quality is why caffeine is a problem for would-be mothers.

Cutting the caffeine makes pregnancy safer

While it’s important to cut the stimulant while you’re trying to conceive, it’s equally important to hold off on caffeine intake during your entire pregnancy. That’s because scientists say that heavy caffeine users are much more likely to miscarry than nonusers. In addition, they say that caffeine can travel through the placenta to the baby.

When it doubt, cut it out

Although there appears to be some evidence that caffeine can hurt fertility, there doesn’t appear to be any evidence that any small amount of caffeine use increases fertility. That means that women can error on the side of caution and cut it out all together. By avoiding caffeine, they can receive the benefits of increased fertility, while there don’t appear to be known drawbacks.

Caffeine hides in mysterious places

While most people know that coffee is full of caffeine, many women don’t realize that caffeine lurks in some mysterious places. Even tea can have significant amounts of caffeine. Hot chocolate and ice cream can be other surprising sources of the stimulant. Women planning to cut caffeine as they plan for pregnancy should evaluate their entire diet to make sure that they aren’t consuming caffeine in unexpected places.

If you’re trying to have a baby, reducing caffeine or cutting it out completely can make a difference. Scientists don’t know exactly how much is too much, but they say that women hoping to conceive can cut back on caffeine intake in order to avoid the risks. It’s also important to avoid caffeine during pregnancy because of increased risks of miscarriage.

Posted in Improve your Fertility

Odd Foods That Increase Fertility

When you’re trying for a baby every little life change counts: the amount of exercise and sleep you get, the timing of your attempts to conceive, but especially what you eat. Eating the right foods at the right times in your cycle can significantly raise your conception odds.

When you have your period, eat fish, beans, and leafy greens. When you are menstruating, it may be tempting to give in to your cravings. Your body hurts and your feelings hurt because this means another month not pregnant. Yet, this critical time in your cycle is when you should be watching your nutrients the closest. Your body is losing iron, which is a critical nutrient in conception, so you should be replacing it as effectively as you can. At the same time, getting enough vitamin C will help your body absorb this iron and use it well.

In the follicular stage, while your body prepares to drop an egg, broccoli, avocado and cashews are your best friends. These foods contain a nutrient that helps balance and stabilize your estrogen levels. They are also high in vitamin E which becomes the fluid your precious egg is held in.

During ovulation, the most important thing you should be consuming is water. Water is essential in getting your hormones and nutrients where they need to be. Being hydrated also thins your cervical mucus so you have a better change of conception. Other foods you should be eating include fish or fish oil, which has important fatty acids and also raises testosterone so you can become aroused more easily. You should also load up a plate of oysters, as they are an aphrodisiac, and also have a remarkable amount of zinc. Zinc is thought to help with cell division and is one of the main ingredients in prenatal vitamins for this reason.

After ovulation, your main goal is to make the environment right for the pregnancy to stick. Soups and other body-warming foods are a good way to do this. At the same time, Beta-carotene in yellow and orange foods like carrots and pineapple balance your hormones to prevent complications. On top of that, pineapple may support implantation due to its mild anti-inflammatory qualities.

What you don’t eat and drink is just as important as what you do. Avoid alcohol and caffeine throughout the process. Both of these can alter your hormones, make your cervical mucus more hostile, and dehydrate you.

Your body is a wonderful thing. It will forgive the little slip ups that are bound to happen, but you should still take the time and effort to nurture it. These foods at these times are proven to help you conceive, so nurture yourself, and you’ll nurture your baby.

Posted in Improve your Fertility

10 Life Lessons About Maintaining Good Health

According to statistics, over the past two decades, life expectancy for humans have significantly risen. It was common for our ancestors to die in their late 30s. One of the main reasons we are living longer is that we take better care of ourselves.

Even more important than quantity of life is quality. When you maintain an active lifestyle and a healthy diet, you have a better chance of living a long, productive life. Here are ten helpful hints for keeping optimal health:

1. You Are What You Eat

Alarming data shows that 67.7% of Americans are obese. Being obese puts you at risk for several major diseases and disorders, says the source. Just like a car, your body needs the right fuel to run efficiently. It needs the right balance of vitamins, minerals, proteins, carbs, and fat. Cutting out processed junk food and eating a variety of whole foods is the best way to stay fit.

2. Daily Exercise

Being a couch potato does nothing good for your body. It needs to be up and moving to keep your blood flowing and your joints limber. The good news is that you do not have to pay an exorbitant price for a gym membership. There are plenty of exercises that you can do at home that will get you in shape just as easily. Even a brisk walk every
day has its benefits.

3. Get Your Beauty Sleep

Staying active does not mean that you do not need rest. Your body was designed to get anywhere from 6-10 hours of sleep in a 24 hour period. While you are sleeping, your cells recover from all the work that you did. They gather an energy reserve for the next day. All of your organs, including your brain, need to rest so that they function right.

4. Take Care Of Your Mental Health

Your brain and nervous system need activity and rest just like the other parts of your body. Keep your mind agile by learning new things. Challenge yourself daily with puzzles and other logical exercises. Meditation and visualization are wonderful tools for soothing your mind and bringing your life into focus.

5. Practice Good Personal Hygiene

No one wants to be around someone who is unkempt and smells bad. A daily hygiene regimen includes bathing (or showering), brushing your teeth, and taking care of your hair. You should also pay careful attention to your fingernails and toenails. Keep your skin youthful and radiant by washing it daily and using a good moisturizer. You minimize chances of getting sick by washing your hands when needed.

6. Avoid Direct Sun

Your body needs a certain amount of sunshine each day in order to produce important Vitamin D. For years, people were encouraged to lie out in the sun to get a golden tan. Even when studies warn that too much sun exposure can cause skin cancer, we still see people baking on the beaches and simmering in tanning beds. These sun worshipers end up with leathery skin, premature wrinkles, and age spots. Keep your skin safe by wearing hats, protective clothing, and a strong sunscreen. If you want a little tan, try bronzers and self-tanning lotions.

7. Kick The Smoking Habit

There is too much information about the hazards of smoking to ignore. Smokers are not only putting their own health at risk, but they risk the health of their family with second-hand smoke. If you are still hooked on tobacco, talk to your doctor about a good cessation program and medications to curb the craving.

8. Limit Alcohol

You can still enjoy your favorite adult beverage; however, it should be done in moderation. Even the studies concerning the benefits of red wine say that there should be a daily limit. Excessive alcohol can cause a dangerous addiction. It poisons your liver and may contribute to premature death. Parties are just as much fun if you drink soda or a glass of water.

9. Speaking Of Water…

The majority of our bodies are made up of water. It only makes sense that you keep yourself hydrated for all the systems in your body to work properly. Health experts recommend between 6-8 glasses of water each day. Limit yourself on the sodas and coffee. If you miss a bubbly drink, try a glass of seltzer with a little lemon juice.

10. Enjoy Your Life!

An old proverb says that life is for the living. While you have to work to pay your bills and keep your family, you still need time for fun and relaxation. Take up a hobby that you have always wanted to do. You will also appreciate life more if you do things to give back to others, such as volunteering at a homeless shelter.

When you put these life lessons into practice, you can stay healthier and live longer. Share your healthy lifestyle with your family and friends. Taking care of yourself is what living is all about.

Posted in Uncategorized

3 Infertility Problems That Plague Women Over 40

infertility over 40

When women reach the age of forty, studies show that their ability to conceive drops considerably. For most women in prime childbearing years, the chance of conceiving each month is around 20 percent, but a woman over the age of forty has about a 5 percent chance for conception each month. It has little to do with physical age, and more to do with the age of a woman’s eggs. Both the quantity and quality of eggs, along with a higher risk of miscarriage can cause infertility problems in women over the age of forty.

Quantity
Fertility begins to decline in women after thirty, and by forty has significantly tapered off. Women are born with all the egg follicles they will ever produce. At birth, that number is around two million. Through a process known as atresia, many of these immature follicles die off, and by puberty, young women have around 400,000 egg follicles. Each month, about 1,000 follicles are released and only one will mature and become an actual egg ready to be fertilized. By menopause, which most commonly occurs between the ages of 48 and 55 years old, women have few, if any, egg follicles remaining.

If you are trying to conceive naturally, egg quantity doesn’t affect potential conception as much as it does if you are attempting to conceive via in vitro fertilization (IVF). The quantity of eggs collected can affect the outcome of IVF, and tests are performed to determine your ovarian reserve. The more eggs retrieved during an IVF cycle enhances the potential for a successful pregnancy.

Quality
The quality of eggs is an essential factor for conception and a healthy pregnancy, whether you are trying to conceive naturally or through fertility treatments. As your eggs age, they are more likely to be affected by chromosomal abnormalities. These abnormalities enhance the risk of both miscarriage and birth defects. At the age of 30, about 30 percent of a woman’s eggs are considered abnormal. At 40, the number of abnormal eggs climbs to 60 percent, and by 44, it hits 90 percent.

Miscarriage
Women over forty are at a higher risk for miscarriage. The quality of eggs plays heavily into this factor. The genetic abnormalities that are present at the time of conception cause the majority of miscarriages. As a woman ages, the percentage of abnormal eggs grows, therefore the risk is higher in women over forty.

Though infertility concerns and risk factors may be more prevalent for women over the age of forty, with proper care and treatment, you can certainly have a wonderful, healthy pregnancy. Being monitored by a physician experienced with high risk pregnancies is crucial. They will partner with you to ensure you have the care you need and that any concerns are addressed if they arise.

Posted in Infertility, Infertility Contributing Factors