Myths and facts about fertility

Everything you need to know about the most common myths and facts about fertility.

It is true that with the internet our lives became easier and everything we need to know is just a click away. But is all that information correct? Unfortunately no, there is a lot of misinformation out there, especially when it comes to medical issues, which of course are the most important. 

So, yes you may find important resources about fertility in Google, but it is not 100% sure that they will be accurate. 

In this article, we will try to cover some facts and myths about fertility that need clarity. Let’s not forget though that the safest way for you to be completely informed is by asking your doctor.


Myth #1: Infertility is mainly a woman’s issue. 

Not at all correct! Women tend to blame mostly themselves if there are complications in conceiving but guess what? Scientists have found that only one-third of infertility cases are due to women’s infertility issues, the other third on men and the last third on both genders. 

Myth #2: Women can’t conceive after 35.

Especially now that assisted reproductive technology (ART) has advanced and new treatments have appeared (e.g. ovarian rejuvenation), it is possible for women older than 35 years old to conceive. Of course, because the egg reserve lowers even more after the age of 30, the possibility of getting pregnant is lower, but not zero!

Myth #3: If you have an irregular menstrual period you are probably infertile.

Wrong! Irregular menstrual periods are common and mostly caused by stress, irregular sleep routines, absence of exercise, and a bad diet. That means that if you fix the above irregularities there is a chance of alternating the inconsistency of your period, but if you experience an absence of period more than three/four months you may want to visit your doctor for extra advice and care. 

Myth #4: Your overall health does not affect your fertility levels.

It goes without saying that a healthy lifestyle, regular exercise, balanced diet, good sleeping routine, etc., will surely enhance your quality of life and overall health including your fertility. There are cases that infertility is genetic, but a bad lifestyle will surely harm your fertility levels.

Myth #5: Infertility is always curable.

Unfortunately, this is not the case. Science does its best to help as many infertile couples as it can, but there are incurable cases. But you shouldn’t feel discouraged or ashamed if that’s the case. There are after all other ways to become a parent, such as adoption.

Myth #6: Couples should try at least one year to conceive, before seeing a doctor.

This is a well-spread rumor between couples, but not entirely true. If you experience any health issue, or you are above 35, or you have any reason to believe you will experience difficulty in conceiving, then it is essential to visit your doctor for further guidelines. 

Myth #7: Using birth control will lead to infertility.

Another common misconception is that if you are on the pill for a long time, it will delay or even vanish the possibility of conceiving. Good news is that it is not scientifically proven that the pill affects your fertility this way, and that you are most likely to experience pregnancy normally. Again, a visit to your doctor will clarify all your concerns.

Myth #8: The average couple conceives within the first 3 months of trying.

How about not putting extra pressure on couples? Besides, this is not the case here. Conception doesn’t typically happen overnight. It usually takes the average couple with no fertility issues up to 12 months of active efforts before conception is accomplished. So give yourself time, and don’t pressure it.

Myth #9: The number of times performing sex counts.

This is not a myth, but a fact! The more often you have sex during your peak fertile days (around 14 days before your period starts), the more likely you are to conceive. Couples who have regular sex, which means every day or every other day, enjoy the highest pregnancy rates.

Myth #10: Miscarriages are hereditary. 

A myth and a fact at the same time! “Genetic causes of miscarriage comprise only 5 percent of contributing factors,” Dr. Trolice says. However, he adds that if you or your parent is a carrier of a chromosomal abnormality called a balanced translocation, this will increase your risk of pregnancy loss. Hopefully, this can be diagnosed through genetic testing.

Myth #11: Sex positions matter.

No, that is not true. Pretty much any position can help you conceive, so don’t pressure yourself with unachievable and weird positions.

Myth #12: You can’t get pregnant during your period.

Actually, you can! While a woman is most likely to conceive by having intercourse a few days before or during ovulation, it is still possible to get pregnant during her period. Sperm can survive in the uterus for up to five days, and if you have sex near the end of your period, there’s a possibility that sperm can fertilize an egg after it is released during ovulation. Overall, this occurrence is rare, but it’s more likely to occur in women with shorter menstruation cycles.

Myth #13: IVF treatments are a total waste of money and a doctor’s way to become richer.

Absolutely wrong! Birth rates from IVF treatments have steadily increased over time with the average birth rate per embryo transferred at 23% in 2018. Patients under 35 had the highest birth rate per embryo transferred at 31% in 2018, compared to only 9% when the HFEA was established in 1991. It may sound difficult to proceed in an IVF treatment but with the proper support and expertise, it may progress smoothly and bring the longed-for results.

Greece is among countries with top-quality doctors and affordable treatments, while recently also announced the new age limit for IVF, from 52 to 54 years of age. Don’t be discouraged, there is still time and doctors always do their best to help you. At the same time, MEDIPASS is your biggest ally! We will be here throughout your whole fertility journey, a journey you should not do alone.

Acropolis in Athens, Greece.
Image from Unsplash

Learn the facts, explore your options, decide what is best for you and leave the rest to MEDIPASS. Here, your journey will be fully personalized, aligned to your wants and needs. 

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