Deciding to start a family
Deciding to start a family is an exciting milestone. For some, pregnancy comes as soon as the first birth control pill is missed. But for 1 in 8 American couples who dream of parenthood, the inability to become or stay pregnant can be filled with heartache. Knowing when to turn to a fertility specialist can minimize the time spent hoping for a baby and make your family a reality sooner.
Maternal age is the greatest predictor of fertility success. Egg quality begins to decline at age 30, and sharply declines at age 35. This means, with each passing year, the chances of conception continue to fall, while the risks for chromosomal issues and miscarriage rise if pregnancy does occur.
Physicians define infertility as one year of unprotected intercourse without pregnancy in women <35 years old, or 6 months of unprotected intercourse without pregnancy in women 35+ years old.
If you are beginning to suspect there is an issue, it’s never too soon to schedule a consult, especially if you have a medical condition linked to infertility. You know your own body, medical history, and relationship.
If you are younger than 35, it is possible to improve your fertility with positive lifestyle changes to: