Infertility refers to an inability to conceive after having regular unprotected sex. Infertility can also refer to the biological inability of an individual to contribute to conception, or to a female who cannot carry a pregnancy to full term. In many countries infertility refers to a couple that has failed to conceive after 12 months of regular sexual intercourse without the use of contraception.
Studies indicate that slightly over half of all cases of infertility are a result of female conditions, while the rest are caused by either sperm disorders or unidentified factors.
According to The Mayo Clinic:
About 20% of cases of infertility are due to a problem in the man.
About 40% to 50% of cases of infertility are due to a problem in the woman.
About 30% to 40% of cases of infertility are due to problems in both the man and the woman.
According to the Department of Health and Human Services, USA, approximately 10% to 15% of couples are infertile – meaning they have not conceived after at least one year of regular, unprotected sex.
Many cases of apparent infertility are treatable. Infertility may have a single cause in one of the partners, or it could be the result of a combination of factors. For details visit www.enjoyqualityhealth.com
Risk Factors of Infertility
In medicine, a risk factor is something that raises the risk of developing a condition, disease or symptom. For example, obese people are more likely to develop diabetes type 2 compared to people of normal weight; therefore, obesity is a risk factor for diabetes type 2.
Being obese or overweight
Eating disorders – women who become seriously underweight as a result of an eating disorder may have fertility problems.
Being vegan – if you are a strict vegan you must make sure your intake of iron, folic acid, zinc and vitamin B-12 are adequate, otherwise your fertility may become affected.
Over-exercising– a woman who exercises for more than seven hours each week may have ovulation problems.
Not exercising – leading a sedentary lifestyle is sometimes linked to lower fertility in both men and women.
Sexually transmitted infections (STIs) – chlamydia can damage the fallopian tubes, as well as making the man’s scrotum become inflamed. Some other STIs may also cause infertility.
Exposure to some chemicals – some pesticides, herbicides, metals (lead) and solvents have been linked to fertility problems in both men and women.
Mental stress – studies indicate that female ovulation and sperm production may be affected by mental stress. If at least one partner is stressed it is possible that the frequency of sexual intercourse is less, resulting in a lower chance of conception.
Causes of infertility in women
Problems with ovulation are the most common cause of infertility in women, experts say. Ovulation is the monthly release of an egg. In some cases, the woman never releases eggs, while in others the woman does not release eggs during come cycles.
The egg travels from the ovary to the uterus (womb) where the fertilized egg grows. If there is something wrong in the uterus or the fallopian tubes the woman may not be able to conceive naturally. This may be due to:
Previous sterilization treatment
Medications: Some drugs can affect the fertility of a woman. These include:
NSAIDs (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) – women who take aspirin or ibuprofen long-term may find it harder to conceive.
Chemotherapy – some medications used in chemotherapy can result in ovarian failure. In some cases, this side effect of chemotherapy may be permanent.
If radiation therapy was aimed near the woman’s reproductive organs there is a higher risk of fertility problems.
Some women who take marijuana or cocaine may have fertility problems.
Causes of infertility in men
Abnormal semen is responsible for about 75% of all cases of male infertility. Unfortunately, in many cases doctors never find out why. The following semen problems are possible:
Low sperm count (low concentration) – the man ejaculates a lower number of sperm, compared to other men. Sperm concentration should be 20 million sperm per milliliter of semen. If the count is under 10 million there is a low sperm concentration (subfertility).
No sperm– when the man ejaculates there is no sperm in the semen.
Low sperm mobility (motility) – the sperm cannot “swim” as well as it should.
Abnormal sperm, Testicular infection, Testicular cancer, Testicular surgery
Overheating the testicles, Ejaculation disorders
Varicocele– this is a varicose vein in the scrotum that may cause the sperm to overheat.
Hypogonadism– testosterone deficiency can result in a disorder of the testicles.
Genetic abnormality – a man should have an X and Y chromosome. If he has two X chromosomes and one Y chromosome (Klinefelter’s syndrome) there will be an abnormal development of the testicles, low testosterone, and a low sperm count (sometimes no sperm at all).
Mumps– this viral infection usually affects young children. However, if it occurs after pubertyinflammation of the testicles may affect sperm production.
Hypospadias– the urethral opening is at the underside of the penis, instead of its tip. This abnormality is usually surgically corrected when the male is a baby. If it is not the sperm may find it harder to get to the female’s cervix. Hypospadias occur in about 1 in every 500 newborn boys.
Radiotherapy– radiation therapy can impair sperm production. The severity usually depends on how near to the testicles the radiation was aimed.
Some diseases – the following diseases and conditions are sometimes linked to lower fertility in males: Anemia, Cushing’s syndrome, Diabetes, Thyroid disease.
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Are you experiencing or having any of the following problems?
Miscarriage, High Prolactin, Hormonal Imbalances, Low Sexual Drive, Irregular Menstrual Cycles, Delayed Periods, Endometriosis, Ovarian Cyst, Abnormal periods. Bleeding is heavier or lighter than usual,Irregular periods, No periods. Painful periods. Back pain, pelvic pain, and cramping may happen.Skin changes, including more acne, Weight gain.
Other symptoms include:Milky white discharge from nipples unrelated to breastfeeding and Pain during sex For men