Infertility refers to the inefficiency of an individual to conceive despite having regular unprotected intercourse. This can also mean the biological incapacity of a certain individual from contributing to conception; also, infertility refers to a woman who is unable to carry out a pregnancy to full term or completely. A few millions of individuals just in the United States of America, or about twelve percent of the whole community within their reproductive years, suffer from infertility, and this has been based on a variety of research and studies.
Although the statistics that have been acquired are staggering, and since infertility can definitely take a huge toll on the emotional health of any individual, there are still a lot of reasons to be hopeful despite experiencing infertility since such treatments are available to give you all the hopes of getting pregnant and having a baby.
The Causes of Infertility
There are different causes of infertility for both males and females, so listed below are some of these to give you an idea of what the common causes are:
Causes of Infertility in Males
1. Abnormal production of sperm or function because of genetic defects, undescended testicles, health issues like diabetes, or even infections such as gonorrhea, chlamydia, HIV, or mumps. Varicoceles or enlarged veins in a males testes can also be a reason for infertility since it affects the quality of their sperm.
2. Issues when it comes to the delivery of sperm because of various sexual problems such as premature ejaculation, genetic diseases like cystic fibrosis, structural issues such as an obstruction in the testicles or injury / damage to their reproductive organs.
3. Overexposure to a variety of environmental aspects like pesticides and other dangerous chemicals, as well as radiation. Alcohol, cigarette smoking, taking marijuana or certain medications like selected antibiotics, anabolic steroids, antihypertensives, and more, can also affect a persons infertility. Additionally, exposure to too much heat such as getting into saunas or hot tubs can increase the core body temperature that can highly affect the production of sperm in a male.
4. Damages in connection with cancer and its treatment process, including chemotherapy or radiation can also cause infertility in males since treatment for cancer can greatly impair the production of sperm, and at times, it can severely impair this.
Causes of Infertility in Females
1. Ovulation disorders that usually affect the release of eggs that come from your ovaries; these issues usually include a variety of hormonal disorders like the Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. Hyperprolactinemia a condition where you will have an abundance of the hormone that stimulates the production of breast milk, called prolactin may also be the cause of infertility in women since it interferes with the process of ovulation.
2. Cervical or uterine abnormalities like issues with your cervixs opening, the shape of your uterus, or polyps in your uterus can also be the cause of infertility in women; benign tumors that can be found in the uterine fibroids or walls could also be the reason for this but the tumor blocking your fallopian tubes is a rare case scenario. More often, the fibroids are the ones that interfere with planting the fertilized eggs.
3. Blockage or damage to your fallopian tubes is usually caused by salpingitis, the inflammation of your fallopian tubes. This can stem from a pelvic inflammatory disease which is usually because of endometriosis, an STI or a sexually transmitted infection, or adhesions.
4. Endometriosis is another cause of infertility in women which occurs when the endometrial tissues develop out of your uterus; this occurrence may affect the proper functioning of your ovaries, fallopian tubes, and even your uterus.
5. Early menopause of primary ovarian insufficiency is the period when your ovaries stop working and your menstruation cycle ends even before you reach the age of forty. The cause for this is still unknown but certain factors are linked to the stage of early menopause; these factors include a couple of genetic conditions such as Turner syndrome, immune system diseases, as well as carriers of the Fragile X syndrome. Furthermore, chemotherapy or radiation treatment, as well as smoking can also cause infertility.
6. Also, pelvic adhesions, appendicitis, pelvic or abdominal surgery, or even bands of scar tissue which connects organs right after pelvic infections also cause infertility in women.
Symptoms of Infertility
Keep in mind that the primary symptoms of infertility are not getting pregnant since you may have also possibly overlooked these symptoms that have been already occurring in the past. The symptoms of infertility also depend on the main reason that causes the problem and a lot of health conditions make it quite difficult for you to get pregnant, and at times, there are no real causes found for the cause of infertility.
Here are the common symptoms of infertility in women:
1. Pain during intercourse.
2. Abnormal menstruation.
3. Irregular to no monthly periods at all.
4. Milky white discharge from the nipples is present and this being unrelated to breastfeeding.
5. Painful menstruation.
6. Skin changes such as the development of more acne.
7. Weight gain.
8. Changes in your sex drive as well as the desire for intercourse.
9. Dark growth of hair right on your lips, chin, and chest.
10. Thinning or loss of hair.
Infertility symptoms in males:
1. Changes in their sexual desire.
2. Hair growth change.
3. The feeling of pain, signs of lumps or swelling in their testicles.
4. Issues when it comes to ejaculation and erections.
5. Firm and small testicles.
Science continues to advance as each day passes which only means that treatments for a variety of health issues and problems continue to get better and better. This also true for infertility problems since there are already infertility treatment methods available in fertility clinics, etc. that will help solve your problems. Today, more and more babies are being born with the help of a variety of infertility treatment methods, and in fact, more than half of couples who have problems when it comes to infertility, have become successful in getting pregnant. What is great about this is that these infertility treatment techniques do not really include the overly-priced and high-tech procedures such as the In Vitro Fertilization.
Which infertility treatment procedure you may need all depends on the main cause of your infertility, as well as how much the procedure costs, and also the fertility clinic that you chose for the procedure. You should keep in mind that a fertility clinic sometimes offers shared risk programs where they will return a portion of the fee for the infertility treatment if ever the procedure is unsuccessful.
Listed below are some of the infertility treatment options available:
1. Fertility Drugs
2. Intrauterine Insemination
3. In Vitro Fertilization
4. Intracytoplasmic Sperm Injection
5. Sperm Donors this is sperm coming from a man other than your partner, or the intended father; this can be utilized during In Vitro Fertilization or Intrauterine Insemination.