If you have been trying to make a baby with your partner for some time and things don’t seem to be working out, don’t fret. You’re not alone in this struggle. According to research, infertility is currently affecting about 10% to 15% of couples in the United States. At Centennial OBGYN PA, in Frisco, TX, women receive teachings and services on conditions like infertility, cancer screening, and obstetrics, among others.
Here are the common reasons why women become infertile:
Having Problems with Ovulation
Ovulation problems are caused by hormonal imbalance, which interferes with the occurrence of regular ovulation. Premature ovarian failure refers to a condition where the eggs fail to function correctly before one reaches menopause, it’s also called pre-menopause. It affects the release of eggs, hence minimizing the chances of you becoming pregnant.
Ovulation problems may also be caused by a condition known as hyperprolactinemia, where you have excess prolactin hormone that stimulates breast milk, thus interfering with ovulation. Extreme amounts of thyroid hormones in the body can also affect your menstrual cycle. Problems caused by the two hormones can be treated with simple medication; hence, the importance of diagnosis as soon as possible.
Having Damaged Fallopian Tubes
Damaged fallopian tubes cause tubal infertility, where a fertilized egg is blocked from getting into the uterus, or sperm are prevented from getting into the egg. Below are the typical causes of a damaged fallopian tube:
- You have pelvic tuberculosis
- You have undergone surgery for ectopic pregnancy, and the embryo begins to develop inside the oviduct instead of the uterus.
- You have undergone other surgeries in the pelvis or abdomen
- You have a pelvic inflammatory disease, which is an infection that damages the oviducts and uterus due to gonorrhea and chlamydia.
Having Uterine or Cervical Abnormalities
These abnormalities include a damaged cervix, an abnormal shape of the uterus, and having polyps in the womb. The uterine walls can also develop fibroids, which cause infertility by blocking the oviducts such that a fertilized egg doesn’t reach the uterus or the sperms fail to reach the egg and fertilize it.
The most significant factor for infertility in women is age. The fertility of a woman starts to decline in her early thirties, and before you reach 36 years your fertility levels will have dropped by almost 40%. Apart from age, there are other age-related issues like endometriosis, which slowly develop into a level that affects fertility.
Endometriosis is the migration of the endometrium cells from the linings of the uterus to the pelvis. This migration can cause significant damage to the ovaries and oviducts, thus successfully altering the movement of the sperms and eggs. Endometriosis also affects egg fertilization, ovum pick-up by the tube, and the growth of an embryo and its implantation.
Other Factors That Increase the Risk of Infertility in Women
- Poor eating habits that can result in severe weight loss may cause fertility problems
- Sexually transmitted diseases, such as chlamydia, damage the fallopian tube hence instigating infertility
- Exposure to various chemicals like herbicides and pesticides, as well as ingredients of some household detergents, can cause infertility
- Mental stress can affect ovulation and result in reduced sexual activities
- Smoking can significantly increase the risk of infertility in women. Pregnant women are advised against smoking as they risk losing the baby.