Stress and fertility: Is stress killing your odds of pregnancy?María Arellano
Are your odds of pregnancy high or low? And what does stress have to do with that? Check out the reasons why you should take stress more seriously when you are planning to get pregnant.
The feeling of stress, with its biological-endocrine symptoms, may be affecting your odds of pregnancy.
This can be good news if you take into account that once the problem is diagnosed it is easier to find a solution.
However, there is little research to date on the impact of stress on fertility (masculine or feminine).
Nerdy readers beware: research does suggest that stress is the cause of behaviors that lead to serious medical issues which become precursors to infertility problems.
Natural fertility and my emotions
Sometimes what we feel is insecurity, for example if it is your first attempt to get pregnant – if you and your partner are anxious to start a family together. It also happens with some people who have problems getting pregnant after the first pregnancy.
Here you can even experience other emotions such as the feeling of surprise because it is not the first pregnancy and the first one occurred easily- everything flowed- so the question arises… Now what is happening?
Different emotions meet and are confronted during the process of wanting to get pregnant. Each person experiences their disappointment in their own way during this process.
“My mood, then, is contradictory, anger, frustration, sadness, hope … I do not know what to feel and I wait, simply” – Ena
It is important to start from the recognition of your own emotions because this allows you to be more present for yourself, just as you would be present for a friend. Also, by taking the time to understand what you are feeling you can explain it patiently to your doctor or even insist that he or she listen and give importance to your emotional health.
“Just relax”? What the research says
Just relax and you’ll get pregnant does not apply to all cases. This is especially important to understand if you have received this advice and feel that the ongoing failure to get pregnant is due to your levels of stress – levels which you consider you should be able to control and fix.
“In fact, even when physical stress or emotional stress does interfere with your menstrual cycle, stress-induced hormonal changes are usually self-correcting and self-limiting. That means when there is a fertility problem that follows stress, the stress was most likely a trigger for a pre-existing medical condition or predisposition” – Georgia Witkin, Ph.D
The impact of stress on your body
Research on the impact of stress on the possibility of getting pregnant suggests that certain times of the month should be your zen moments – peace oasis…
The conclusion was based on the measurement of alpha amalyse which is a substance the body uses to digest starch and is secreted “when the nervous system produces catecholamines, compounds that initiate a type of stress response” (See article by the National Institutes of Health).
More research is necessary, though, because the enzyme we most associate with stress, our friend cortisol, did not register impact (negative or positive) on the ability to conceive.
Stress during Ovulation
Heads up! There is still a lot to research on fertility and stress BUT it does seem like there is clear indication that certain times of the month are key: “Stress during the ovulation window, the research showed, translated into a three-month delay in conception” (Read more by Lila MacLellan at Quartz)
Stress reduction and fertility
With the knowledge of your emotional state and after prior consultation with your physician, you can now consider what role stress is playing on your infertility. In a future post we will expand in greater detail on anti-stress therapies for the benefit of our fertility.
In any case, keep this in mind, if you do not have a diagnosed medical condition that may be affecting your ability to conceive, it is possible that the cause of your temporary infertility is stress.
Are you stressed about getting pregnant?
Studies also show that laughter can help you on your path to a healthy pregnancy.
Ways to address stress reduction include games and jokes.
“You have to apply what a friend of mine says, imagine you are 16 years old, you are studying and you have not taken precautions” – Alhandra
So try to surround yourself with a couple of clowns during your natural family planning efforts, especially when your ovulating. How would you know exactly when your ovulating? With himama, of course. Get the most accurate fertility monitor, today. And remember: we´re here for you, too.