Fertility Myths Debunked

Fertility Myths Debunked

Featuring Victorian Medical Director and Melbourne fertility specialist, Dr Anne Poliness

At City Fertility, we understand that misconceptions about fertility can cause undue stress and worry. That’s why we’re committed to sharing accurate information paired with compassionate care. In this article, Victorian Medical Director and Melbourne fertility specialist Dr Anne Poliness debunks some common fertility myths and sheds light on the facts.


Myth 1: Infertility is mainly a woman’s issue

This misconception can be isolating and unfair. Infertility does not discriminate by gender; it affects men and women equally. About one-third of infertility cases are attributed to female factors, one-third to male factors, and the remaining third to a combination of both or unexplained reasons. Everyone’s journey to parenthood is unique, and various factors, including genetics, health conditions, and lifestyle choices, play a role. Understanding this helps prevent unnecessary blame and encourages both partners to seek support and treatment.


Myth 2: Age only affects women’s fertility

While it’s well-known that a woman’s fertility declines with age, particularly after 35. Men’s fertility also changes over time, generally beginning to decline around age 40. This can affect not only the changes of conception but also the health of the pregnancy and the baby. For instance, older paternal age has been associated with an increased risk of various genetic conditions and other health issues in offspring. Age-related changes in fertility can also affect the quality of sperm and eggs, which in turn influences embryo development and pregnancy success rates. As a result, it’s crucial for both partners to consider how age might impact their plans for starting or growing a family.


Myth 3: There’s nothing you can do to improve your fertility

While not all fertility challenges can be overcome by lifestyle changes alone, maintaining a healthy lifestyle is beneficial. These include maintaining a healthy weight, eating a balanced diet, getting regular exercise, managing stress, and avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption. For those looking for specific advice, City Fertility offers resources like our ‘Tips to Boost’ fact sheet.


Myth 4: You just need to ‘relax’, and it will happen

While often intended to be supportive, this advice can be dismissive and discouraging. Telling couples or individuals trying to conceive to “just relax” minimises their experiences and oversimplifies the complex issues involved. While stress can certainly take a toll on your overall health and well-being, it’s not usually the sole cause of infertility. However, chronic stress can disrupt hormone regulation, which can impact ovulation and sperm production.

Fertility issues are often medical in nature and may require specific treatments or interventions. Effective treatment plans should address the medical nature of fertility issues, tailored to the individual’s or couple’s specific needs.


Myth 5: Fertility treatments are a last resort

Viewing fertility treatments as only a last resort overlooks their role as part of a broad spectrum of options available at different stages of the fertility journey. These treatments are valuable for many couples facing conception challenges. They range from simple, less invasive techniques to advanced procedures.

Consulting with a fertility specialist early can significantly enhance your chances of success. Early intervention allows us to tailor treatments to your specific needs, potentially speeding up the time it takes to achieve a successful pregnancy. This proactive approach helps in addressing fertility issues promptly, improving outcomes, and minimising emotional and financial stress.

Ultimately, the goal is to identify the right solution early in your journey, rather than as a last resort. Early consultation can lead to better-informed decisions and more effective treatment plans, providing couples with the best opportunity for a successful outcome.


Myth 6: Fertility treatments always result in multiple births

Advances in fertility treatment have greatly reduced the likelihood of multiple births. With the current practice of usually transferring a single embryo during IVF, the incidence of twins or triplets has significantly decreased. Our goal is always to ensure the safest possible outcome for mother and child.


Ready to take the next step?

At City Fertility, we are committed to providing compassionate and comprehensive care. We strive to debunk myths and offer clarity and hope to our clients. If you have concerns about your fertility or have been struggling to conceive, reach out to us. Our team, including fertility specialists like Dr Anne Poliness, is here to support you with personalised care and state-of-the-art treatment options.

For more information or to schedule a consultation, contact our Fertility Advice team. Let us help you navigate your journey to parenthood with confidence and care.

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