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Fertility Risks: Risks when trying to conceive
It makes sense that everything we put into our bodies can have an affect on us. Certain toxins can prevent couples from conceiving, or even cause miscarriage, so it’s important to understand the risks involved in lifestyle choices. Eliminating the following from your life may be the key to unlocking fertility.
Undoubtedly you have heard of the health risks associated with smoking, but if those haven’t given you reason to quit, perhaps the statistics on smoking and fertility will. In a recent systematic U.K. review of 21 studies following women who smoked, 95 percent of women were found to have significantly lower odds of getting pregnant naturally or carrying a baby to term, as well as significantly higher odds of miscarriage and ectopic pregnancy. The more women smoke, as well, the more likely menopause will begin at a younger age. The carbon monoxide associated with smoking also enters the body and decreases oxygen levels to a fetus, which can lead to miscarriage, premature births, and developmental problems in infants.
Whether smoking marijuana for medicinal purposes or recreational use, marijuana has been shown to lower the number of sperm in men, decreasing fertility. It may take as long as three months for marijuana to leave the body and the same amount of time to see an increased sperm count. With use of other drugs, such as cocaine and methamphetamines, miscarriage rates increase, as does the risk of placental abruption, a condition where the placenta separates from the wall of the uterus.
Exposure to toxins in our environment has been shown to cause infertility and miscarriage, especially occupational hazards. Consider that flight attendants, who are exposed to radiation and gravitational forces, have twice the number of miscarriages as other women, or employees at dry cleaning companies who have three times more infertility than others. Toxins that have been linked to infertility in both men and women, including miscarriage, include radiation, electromagnetic radiation from computers, carcinogens found in paints, glues, and adhesives, lead, mercury, cleaning solvents, and pesticides. While more studies are needed to associate certain toxins and their affects on fertility, it is best to avoid these toxins when trying to conceive.
If you are unsure if your lifestyle is playing a role in your fertility, it is best to be upfront with your physician and to discuss the role of toxins and infertility, as well as how to eliminate toxins from your system. If you need to see a fertility doctor, ask one of our experts for help in scheduling your fertility consultation