Much is written about the possible ill effects of stress on our physical and emotional health. However not many people are aware that chronic stress has been cited as one of the key contributors to the alarming rise in male and female infertility. While researchers worldwide are working to establish the exact link between infertility and stress, fertility doctors can no longer afford to overlook the possible effects of stress on an individual’s ability to conceive.
Research supporting the effects of stress on human fertility
Today there is much documented evidence supporting the impact of chronic stress on both natural and assisted pregnancies.
In research published in the journal Fertility and Sterility in 2001, researchers at the University of California, San Diego reported that high levels of stress may affect the success rate of In Vitro fertilization (IVF) and other infertility treatments.
Women who reported being highly stressed were found to have ovulated 20% fewer eggs compared to women who were less stressed. The researchers also found that women with the highest levels of stress were 20% less likely to have successful fertilization.
In another recent study published in the journal Human Reproduction, doctors found that the likeliness of pregnancy was higher in couples who were not stressed during the time they were trying to conceive. Couples who reported feeling anxious or stressed were found to be less likely to conceive during the said period.
According to the American Society of Reproductive Medicine, stress can contribute to delayed or missed ovulation in women by possibly increasing the production of certain hormones in the body.
Particularly in women where no biological reasons for infertility can be found (known as ‘unexplained infertility’), stress could be the often undiagnosed underlying cause.
For men and women dealing with infertility, this can become a vicious cycle wherein the inability to conceive leads to stress and increased stress levels affect the body’s response to treatment.
Therefore it has become vital to consider stress management an important aspect of infertility treatment.
Infertility Counselling for Men
At the international conference on Challenges in Infertility Management (CIIM) held in Chennai last year, experts observed that male infertility now contributes to almost 60% of all infertility cases.
Contrary to popular belief, it is not just women who experience high levels of infertility related stress. The male partner suffers equally, although he may not be as vocal or as expressive about it.
While infertility-related stress could be contributing to the growing incidence of male infertility in ways that we do not yet understand, experts at Gaudium believe that for any stress management strategies to be successful, mental well being of the male partner is just as crucial.
Fertility doctors worldwide are discovering that counselling and stress reduction could play a key role in the success of infertility treatments.
MANTRANA –Counselling Program me for your Emotional Well being
In India, Gaudium IVF has been the first infertility centre to introduce a comprehensive counselling program me for the psychological well being of infertile couples.
MANTRANA by Gaudium is a unique counselling module designed to help patients learn how to confront, manage and resolve stress and anxiety associated with infertility.
The module is based on evidence which indicates that adopting a healthier lifestyle and learning how to cope with stress can help increase the chances of conception in some individuals.
– Stress reduction may influence implantation by enhancing protein levels within the uterine lining.
– Reducing stress may increase blood flow to the uterus, which in turn may positively impact conception.
– Psycho educational support helps both partners resolve relationship conflicts, encourages them to empathise with each other and helps improve interpersonal communication.
Both partners are carefully guided through practical stress reduction techniques and continued counselling which empowers them to overcome stress and inculcate relaxation on a day-to-day basis.
Due to this patient-centric approach, MANTRANA has led to improved outcomes in infertility treatment and has led to a significant increase (10-14%) in the treatment success rate.
Over the last 5 years, Gaudium, the best IVF treatment centre in India, has maintained an unprecedented success rate of 58-65% for IVF treatments and 90% over 3 IVF cycles.
With an , Gaudium has helped thousands of childless couples have a child of their own.
Take the first step to fulfilling your most precious dream with the help of the best IVF center in India. Book an appointment with renowned IVF specialist Dr. Manika Khanna here.