Fertility: Five key risk factors that can make falling pregnant difficult

But in the lead-up to becoming a mum in the future, are you maximising your fertility potential? Here are five key risk factors that could be hindering your chance of starting a biological family. One of the worst things you can do for your health – in all circumstances – is to smoke. Smoking is said to damage the cervix and fallopian tubes, the Mayo Clinic verified.

Symptoms develop between the fourth and 12th week of pregnancy, which can include:

  • A missed period and other signs of pregnancy
  • Tummy pain low down on one side
  • Vaginal bleeding or a brown watery discharge
  • Pain in the tip of your shoulder
  • Discomfort when peeing or pooing.

“Unfortunately, it’s not possible to save the pregnancy,” the NHS clarified.

Another risk factor for infertility includes being overweight or significantly underweight.

Maintaining a healthy body mass index (BMI) might increase the frequency of ovulation, improving the chances of falling pregnant.

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A previous history of sexually transmitted infections, such as chlamydia and gonorrhoea, can also damage the fallopian tubes.

Not being on top of your sexual health can lead to fertility issues down the line.

Excessive alcohol consumption can also reduce fertility, so people trying for a baby are better off abstaining completely.

People still need to consider their age when factoring in the best probability of falling pregnant.

Women hoping to fall pregnant are advised to maintain a healthy weight, to be a non-smoker, to avoid alcohol, and to reduce levels of stress.

Studies have shown that stressed couples have poorer results with infertility treatment.

It is worth noting that if you need to lose weight, exercise moderately.

This is because strenuous, intense exercise of more than five hours per week has been associated with decreased ovulation.

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