5 Important Factors that Influence Your Fertility

Jan 02, 2024
 5 Important Factors that Influence Your Fertility
Pregnancy doesn’t come easily to every couple. Learn about the factors that can affect your fertility journey, from age and lifestyle to environmental influences, and find out how to navigate these challenges.

When it comes to addressing infertility, a deep understanding of the factors that can impact your ability to conceive is vital. Led by Dr. Kevin Doody and Dr. Kathleen Doody, our expert team at Effortless IVF™ in Fort Worth and Bedford, Texas, emphasizes the significance of these factors for individuals and couples planning to start or expand their families. 

Read on as we share insights into five key elements that affect fertility in men and women alike.

1. Your age

Age plays a paramount role in fertility. Women experience peak fertility in their late twenties to early thirties, with a notable decline starting at the age of 35. This decline, which becomes more pronounced as women approach their forties, is due to a decrease in egg quality and quantity, both of which makes conception more challenging.

Men, while experiencing a later onset of fertility decline, also face reduced sperm quality and volume starting around 40 years of age. This gradual change can prolong the time it takes to conceive and increase the possibility of health issues in offspring.

2. Lifestyle choices

Lifestyle choices play a significant role in fertility. Factors such as smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and drug use can negatively impact both sperm quality and egg health. Smoking, for instance, has been linked to reduced egg quality and can also affect sperm DNA.

Diet and exercise are also crucial. A balanced diet rich in nutrients supports reproductive health, while obesity or being underweight can disrupt reproductive hormone balance, affecting ovulation in women and sperm production in men. Regular, moderate exercise is beneficial, but extreme physical activity can have the opposite effect — especially in women.

3. Health conditions and medications

Certain health conditions can significantly affect fertility. For women, conditions like polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), endometriosis, and uterine fibroids can interfere with ovulation or stop a fertilized egg from implanting in the uterus. In men, issues such as varicocele (enlarged veins in the scrotum) can undermine sperm production.

Medication can also influence fertility. Some antidepressants, anti-inflammatory drugs, and chemotherapy drugs can temporarily reduce fertility in both genders. If you’re actively trying to conceive, it’s important to discuss any medication use with your primary healthcare provider.

4. Environment and occupation

The environment, both at home and at work, can play a significant role in fertility. Exposure to pesticides, heavy metals, and solvents can impact sperm quality and quantity. Environmental toxins can affect women's fertility, too, though the evidence is more nuanced. 

Occupational stress and extended work hours can also disrupt reproductive hormone balance in both genders and reduce the chances of successful conception.

5. Psychological factors

The impact of psychological health on fertility is often overlooked. Stress, anxiety, and depression can disrupt reproductive hormone balance and ovulation in women, and affect sperm production and libido in men. Addressing mental health, managing stress, and seeking support when needed are crucial steps in fostering a fertile physical environment.

When to seek professional guidance

Navigating the complexities of fertility requires a comprehensive approach. At Effortless IVF™, we offer expert advice and personalized treatment options to help you overcome fertility challenges. Embracing a healthy lifestyle, managing underlying conditions, being conscious of environmental exposures, and taking care of mental health are integral to optimized fertility.

Are you ready to explore your fertility solutions? We’re here to help. Give us a call today, or click online to schedule a visit at your nearest Effortless IVF™ office in Fort Worth or Bedford, Texas, any time.