There are numerous factors that can affect your fertility. Last month, we examined some of the medical conditions that are linked to infertility, so this month we wanted to highlight some of the lifestyle choices and habits that may help shed some more light on underlying causes of infertility.
In order to promote regular ovulation, it’s recommended that you maintain a healthy weight. Being significantly overweight or underweight can have an effect on your fertility because it can lead to irregular ovulation. Extra weight can actually prevent ovulation because both the ovaries and fat cells produce estrogen. Too much estrogen can function in a similar way as a hormonal birth control method by preventing ovulation altogether. When you are underweight, the opposite issue can occur. Not having enough fat can cause your body to stop producing estrogen, causing irregular menstrual cycles.
2. Irregular sleeping patterns
Sleep is beneficial for many different systems in the body, and allows for detoxification and regulation, including the regulation of hormones. Irregular sleeping patterns, including night shifts, can negatively affect hormone production that can lead to infertility.
3. Alcohol use
Excessive consumption of alcohol puts you at a higher risk of ovulation disorders. This is due in part to the effect drinking has on your liver. Your liver aids in hormone function, so heavy drinking may disrupt this function within the liver and lead to infertility.
4. Tobacco use
If you smoke, quitting should be one of the first steps you take when trying to conceive. Not only does tobacco increase the risk of health problems in developing babies, but smoking also can decrease your chances of getting pregnant in the first place. This is because tobacco use has an aging effect on the ovaries, and depletes the number of viable eggs prematurely.
While exercising is an important part of daily life, too much vigorous exercise can impede ovulation and reduce the production of the hormone progesterone. Any lifestyle choice that directly affects your hormonal system should be avoided because it can correlate with a decrease in fertility.
6. Exposure to Toxins
While exposure to toxins may not be a choice or ever something we’re aware of, it’s important to be aware of the fact that exposure to certain chemicals and toxins such as pesticides, solvents and heavy metals can lead to problems with fertility. Avoid these toxins when at all possible, and make sure you follow safety protocols if you are exposed to any of these pollutants.
7. Sexually Transmitted Infections
If having a baby is something you want in the future, make sure you follow safe sex practices leading up to the conception of your child. Sexually transmitted infections such as chlamydia and gonorrhea are some of the leading causes of infertility in women. Avoid these infections by using a condom and by getting tested regularly for STIs.
Talk to A Fertility Expert
If you have questions or concerns about lifestyle choices that may cause fertility issues, reach out to Carolinas Fertility Institute today. We offer a wide variety of services, from fertility evaluations to In Vitro fertilization. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation by calling our Charlotte office at (844) 686-2233 or our office in the Triad at (336) 448-9100.