Exactly when does infertility begin?

Infertility is defined as the inability to get pregnant after actively trying for one year. There are many contributing factors that can lead to infertility, but there really is no way to tell when fertility problems will start. If you have only been trying for a few months, don’t worry too much yet about infertility. Sometimes it just takes awhile.

Primary infertility

Primary infertility is when you have trouble getting pregnant at all, after a year of trying. There are so many different reasons that can contribute to primary infertility. About one third of the problems are male related, and about one third of the problems are female related. The final one third of most fertility problems are a mix of male and female fertility issues.

Female factors for primary infertility

There are a huge variety of factors that can play a role in primary infertility for women. Conditions such as endometriosis and PCOS can make it difficult to get pregnant. Age is probably the biggest factor for women as related to fertility. After around age 35, a woman’s fertility drops dramatically. By age 40, it can be almost impossible for a woman to get pregnant on her own. Irregular periods, ovarian cysts, and scar tissue can also be contributing factors.

Male factors for infertilty

There are also many factors that can cause male infertility also. Some of these factors include age, weight issues, immune system problems and STDs. The most common problems as related to male infertility are low sperm count, poor sperm quality and poor sperm motility. However, male infertility is usually more easily treated than female infertility, in most cases.

Secondary infertility

Secondary infertility is when you can not get pregnant after you already have had a successful pregnancy and given birth in the past. Secondary infertility can be especially hard to deal with because it can be very unexpected. If you already have a child, you might think you are in the clear and that you don’t need to worry about fertility issues, but secondary infertility affects many couples.

The bottom line

The bottom line is that there is no way to tell when infertility will happen. With some couples, infertility is an issue from the start. In other couples, infertility doesn’t play a role until they have already had one or more successful pregnancies. Sometimes, infertility comes with age, and at other times, it is already present. There really is no way to know. If you think that you might have fertility issues, talk with your doctor to find out for sure.

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