In vitro fertilization (IVF) is an option to assist women having difficulty conceiving a child due to fertility issues or genetic problems. Here are some things you need to focus on to set the stage and build a platform on which you can do your very best to ensure a positive outcome with IVF treatment.
- Healthy Lifestyle Changes: This would include reducing caffeine intake and alcohol consumption, quitting smoking, taking vitamins and antioxidants, and reducing stress. Unhealthy lifestyle habits may reduce the chances of getting pregnant using IVF by as much as 50%. Particularly for women, stress reduction is very important. Consider how you can reduce stress levels. This may involve relaxing exercises such as yoga, reducing the amount of work you do or taking a vacation.
- Optimizing Uterine Health: Your doctor will examine your uterine cavity to make sure you don’t have scar tissue, uterine polyps, or anything that could impede the chances of success with IVF treatment. These problems can usually be treated by a hysteroscopy that can be performed as an outpatient procedure. Keep in mind that you would need at least a month or two to allow your uterine cavity to heal after such a procedure. Estrogen supplements may sometimes be recommended to increase the thickness of the uterine lining.
- Sperm Health: Things to be investigated are sperm count, motility, and morphology. To improve sperm health, men should stay active and eat healthy, maintain ideal body mass index, and avoid smoking, alcohol, as well as saunas or hot baths as increased scrotal temperature is detrimental to sperm health.
- Optimizing Female Hormone Levels: This would include hormones that effect thyroid function and metabolism. If you do have a thyroid problem, you should take thyroid replacement hormones ideally before starting of the IVF treatment. FSH hormone level should also be tested.
- Choosing the Right Fertility Clinic: When choosing a clinic to undergo IVF treatment, success rates alone don’t always give the complete picture. You should ask for detailed information such as the general age and medical issues of the patients treated as well as the approach to treatment.
Try to give yourself at least 3 months or longer to prepare for your IVF treatment. Although the ticking of the biological clock is a big factor in achieving a successful pregnancy, it is very important to prepare well for IVF rather than to rush into it.
ReproMed Fertility Center offers personalized fertility treatments in four convenient locations in the Dallas metroplex and one in Tyler. Please contact us at (214) 827-8777 for all appointments and information.