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Smoking, Alcohol, Caffeine, & Drug Use Can Affect Your Fertility

There is no question that smoking is harmful to fertility.  Women who smoke  are more likely to experience infertility and enter menopause at an earlier age.  Research shows that smokers are less likely to respond to fertility medications and tend to produce fewer eggs when going through IVF.  Quitting smoking should be a priority when trying to conceive.

Recreational and illegal drugs should be no where near your body if you are trying to conceive due to the detrimental effects that can occur with an ever-changing fetus. 

The negative effects of alcohol on pregnancy are well documented. It is not safe to drink while pregnant, and alcohol should be avoided prior to conception because even moderate amounts have been linked to early miscarriage.

A good rule of thumb is no drinks while you are a patient in cycle at CC. If you are not currently in a treatment cycle, ARE NOT PREGNANT, and feel like you’d like to have a glass of wine, a little in moderation is OK in the first half of your cycle while you are on your period. After your period ends, your body will enter its “fertile window” and all alcoholic beverages should be avoided in hopes of conception after ovulation.

aMany patients wonder about the safety of caffeine during conception and pregnancy because they have come to love their morning coffee or afternoon soda. Research here is conflicting and inconclusive. Some studies connect increased early miscarriage risk to caffeine intake. We feel if you’re trying to conceive, experiencing infertility, and considering investing in expensive fertility treatments, it makes sense to start cutting back on your caffeine intake if you haven’t already.  


BabyCenter.com has a great article on Caffeine During Pregnancy if you’d like to learn more. The article describes how caffeine crosses the placenta and provides a chart detailing the amounts of caffeine found in common beverages and foods.  Some doctors may recommend completely cutting out caffeine.  However, most studies show that caffeine only increases miscarriage rates at very high amounts (think 5-6 cups of coffee daily!).  Therefore, other physicians consider caffeine in moderation (under 200 mg of cffeine daily) to be reasonable for infertility patients to consume.

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