If you're trying to have a baby, there are certain things that you know that you should probably do to increase your chances of getting pregnant and having a healthy pregnancy. You might give up smoking or drinking alcohol, exercise more, and take more care to eat a healthy diet, for example. But there could be some other factors affecting your fertility and making it harder for you to conceive. Take a look at some surprising things that could be interfering with your fertility.
You probably already know that stress can affect your health. You may have noticed that you are more vulnerable to colds during stressful periods of your life, or that you develop headaches and other symptoms when you're under stress. But did you know that stress can disrupt your body's ovulation cycle?
The hypothalamus gland is the gland that tells your ovaries when it's time to release eggs each month. However, stress hormones affect the function of the hypothalamus. When this happens, you may fail to ovulate, or your cycle may become irregular, meaning that you may not ovulate when you expect to. This can cause difficulty in getting pregnant. Avoiding undue stress can increase your chances of conceiving.
It's difficult to sleep with the lights on, and you may have noticed that even the light from your phone, alarm clock, or tablet screen can be disruptive to your sleep. What you may not know is that this disruption can also impact your fertility.
Your fertility is affected in the same way that your sleep is affected – the artificial light suppresses your body's ability to produce melatonin. You probably only know melatonin as the sleep hormone, but it also helps protect your eggs from damage, especially during ovulation. This can make it harder to conceive. Even worse, if you do get pregnant, melatonin suppression can affect your developing fetus negatively as well. Your best bet is to make sure to block out all the lights at night – including those from electronic devices.
You may not know the word phthalates off the top of your head, but you probably come into contact with them regularly. They're a type of substance used to make plastics flexible, and they're found in everything from food wrappers to makeup to children's toys.
Phthalates are xenoestrogens – substances that behave like estrogen. This can cause hormone disruptions in your body that affect both male and female fertility. They can also cause early menopause in women. In order to increase your chances of conceiving, look for labels that specify products are phthalate-free and opt for natural products wherever possible. Since phthalates affect male fertility as well, talk to your partner about reducing their exposure to phthalates as well.
If you're trying to get pregnant, it's a good idea to visit your OBGYN for a checkup and to make sure there are no causes for concern. Make sure to mention any concerns that you have about your fertility so that your doctor can check them out. For more information, contact establishments like Desert Rose OBGYN PC.