Did you know that 1 in every 6 couples struggles to fall pregnant?
Trying for a baby is an exciting, hopeful and very special time. There’s a narrow window during which you can fall pregnant each cycle, so it’s not unusual for it to take a few months of trying. However, the medical definition of infertility is failure to conceive after one year of regular intercourse without contraception.
If you, or someone you know, have been in this position, you’ll know how painful it can be. With every passing month without that longed-for positive test, the joy of trying for a baby can turn to frustration, and eventually despair. Other couples may find they can fall pregnant, but suffer the agony of miscarriage.
A proportion of infertility cases are linked to structural issues within the body, but a staggering 30% are simply ‘unexplained’. This means that there is no medically identifiable problem at the root of the issue. However, it should be noted that commonly available investigations are limited in their scope, and test ranges aren’t always indicative of optimum function.
There are dozens of factors that can contribute to infertility. These include (but are not limited to) hormonal imbalances, dietary excesses, nutrient insufficiencies, emotional issues, certain lifestyle habits, toxin exposure and immune challenges.
“A body in balance is a happy body, and one that can more easily provide the terrain for growing new life”
Functional Medicine takes a slightly different stance to conventional medicine. Rather than looking for diagnoses or disease states, it considers the individual. Treatment is designed to bring that unique person back into balance. A body in balance is a happy body, and one that can more easily provide the terrain for growing new life.
Functional Medicine also provides access to state-of the-art tests, which provide more thorough investigation with much more clinically relevant ranges. Armed with this depth of information, nutritional expertise can be employed to provide the body with exactly what it needs. This may include dietary changes, lifestyle adjustments and certain targeted supplements where appropriate.
A study conducted by the University of Surrey found that when couples with a history of infertility made changes similar to those listed above, they achieved an 80% success rate of falling pregnant. When you consider that IVF success rates currently range from 7% to 30%, it’s certainly worth trying these nutrition and lifestyle interventions.
In an ideal world, all future parents would give themselves 3 months of pre-conceptual care, as it takes roughly that long for the female egg and male sperm to mature. With that in mind, even if you haven’t yet encountered fertility issues but are planning to start trying, optimising your health and that of your partner can help ensure a smooth pregnancy—and give your baby the best start in life.
To find out how I can help, please get in touch.