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Top Fertility Resolutions
by Rachel Lehmann-Haupt, Jan. 4, 2010
Every year we make them and then every year we try to keep them. According to Pink magazine, more than 40 percent of Americans make New Year’s resolutions, but most people only keep these resolutions for the first months. And while Pink says only 46 percent of the people actually stay on track until June, the good news is that those who explicitly make resolutions are ten times more likely to attain their goals than people who don't.
FertilityAuthority talked to some experts about the best fertility resolutions to make when you're trying to get pregnant or coping with infertility.
Here are eight resolutions for your fertility for 2010:
1. The top New Year’s resolutions are generally in the areas of weight loss, exercise, and quitting smoking and all of these goals may also impact your fertility. "You should eliminate smoking, drugs, alcohol, excessive caffeine and get close to a normal body weight by modifying diet and exercise. You should see a reproductive endocrinologist if there are any hints at something being wrong, or if you’re not pregnant in six months or more."
- Dr. Edward Marut, Medical Director, The Fertility Centers of Illinois, Highland Park, IL
2. "Check your FSH levels and AMH levels [these hormones will give you a sense of your reproductive capacity].
- Dr. Bill Meyers, Carolina Conception, Raleigh, North Carolina
3. If you're over 35, don't postpone pregnancy for an enormous period of time."
- Dr. Meyers
4. "Despite the travails of the fertility journey, be resolute in supporting the relationship with your partner. Also, maintain a positive outlook and perspective on life outside of fertility. Do not ignore the rest of your life."
- Dr. David Kreiner, Medical Director, East Coast Fertility, Plainview, NY
5. "Set a non-fertility related goal for youself; something with a distinct beginning, middle and end. This might be hobbie or something self-care related such as learning how to knit a scarf or training to run in a 5K. This helps you know you can achieve things which are completly in your control."
- Sharon N. Covington, M.S.W., LCSW-C, BCD, Director, Psychological Support Services, Shady Grove Fertility Center, Rockville, MD
6. "Infertility can get you in a pattern of 'stinkin' thinkin' and research shows there is great power in positive thinking. Keep a journal by your bed and each night before going to sleep write down three things you are grateful for. As the song goes, 'you'll fall a sleep counting you blessings" and help channel positive energy.'"
- Sharon Covington
7. "From the world of Traditional Chinese Medicine the suggestion would be, 'Don't stagnate.' Stay active and engaged physically by walking or doing yoga. Don't keep over thinking and over- worrying and talk to family and friends about your worries and fears. Trying to help mitigate some of the negative aspects of the stress is crucial to helping your body stay balanced."
- Michelle P. Hay, Licensed Acupuncturist, Co-Director of Acupuncture, The Domar Center, Boston, MA
8. "Focus on balancing the very real difficulties and pain of having fertility problems with identifying the positives in your life that are independent of having a baby (e.g. people in your life you love and enjoy, activities that can bring joy like walking on a crisp sunny winter day, reading a good book, volunteering for something meaningful). Make sure you seek out those positives."
- Andrea Braverman, Ph.D., Director of Complementary & Alternative Medicine, RMA of NJ, Morristown, NJ
Even if you take action in the first few months of the year, it may make for a better 2010. Happy New Year!
Rachel Lehmann-Haupt (www.lehmannhaupt.com) is a journalist and the author of In Her Own Sweet Time: Unexpected Adventures in Finding Love, Commitment and Motherhood (Basic Books, 2009).