Breaking Down the Top 10 Fertility Myths
Myth 1: Stress Causes Infertility
This myth is both true and not true. Stress certainly can a
ffect fertility for men and women, but it is rarely the sole cause of infertility. There are two mechanisms by which stress can “cause” infertility. The first is if the stress is extreme and the woman stops ovulating; the second is if the stress causes the couple to stop having sex or to have sex less frequently.
Myth 2: If You Stop Thinking About It, Pregnancy Will Happen Naturally
This is simply not true and, when facing fertility a problem, is practically impossible. You need to make sure that you are having sex at a time when the sperm will reach the egg during ovulation.
Myth 3: Breastfeeding Equals Birth Control
Breastfeeding can extend the amount of time before your period returns, after giving birth. However, this is not true for all women, and the effects are strongest for only a couple months after giving birth. Even during this time, conception is certainly possible.
Myth 4: Good Health Conquers Age
Good health, though important for pregnancy, cannot make up for time. The quality of a woman’s egg starts to decrease dramatically after the age of 35.
Myth 5: Eating Yams While Trying To Conceive Will Result In Twins
This myth started when researchers were trying to determine why the people of Igbo Ora in Africa had such a high occurrence of twins. One thing they noticed was that the people there ate a lot of yams. These results have not been replicated in any U.S. studies.
Myth 6: You Need To Orgasm In Order To Conceive
While an orgasm may be an important factor in keeping a couple interested in sex, it is not necessary for pregnancy to occur. An orgasm, which contracts the uterus, does help to push sperm toward the fallopian tubes, but even without an orgasm sperm can easily move in this direction.
Myth 7: Only Women Need To Take Supplements Before A Pregnancy
Folic acid is important in the fertility of both men and women. Low levels of folic acid can lead to birth defects.
Myth 8: Lifting Your Legs In The Air For 20 Minutes After Having Sex Will Help You Get Pregnant
The idea behind this myth is that gravity will help the sperm to stay in the woman’s body and increase the chance of them reaching the egg. This is unnecessary. Sperm do not need help knowing where to go, and of the millions of sperm in each ejaculation only one is needed to make it to the egg.
Myth 9: Having Sex Every Day Is The Best Way To Ensure Pregnancy
Having sex every day does not give you a significantly better chance for getting pregnant than having sex every other day. However, if that is your preferred method, it is good to know that if a man has a normal sperm count his sperm concentration should not decrease with daily sex.
Myth 10: He Does Not Have Any Fertility Problems; He Is Already A Dad
Men’s fertility, like women’s fertility, is affected by age. Especially after the age of 40 men will start to see an increase in genetic mutations in sperm, as well as an overall decrease in volume and mobility of semen.