First pregnancy after 35: what you need to know before…

Health Tips

Despite the statistics, female reproductive function is based not so much on age as on the “ovulatory reserve” or, as it is also called, “ovarian reserve”. This collective term describes the quantity and quality of eggs that a woman has at her disposal for ovulation and fertilization.

Every woman is born with a certain supply of eggs. According to the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, at the time of birth, a woman’s ovaries contain about 2 million eggs, of which only 300,000 to 500,000 survive until the first menstruation. And only about 400 of these eggs will enter the woman’s ovulatory reserve and will be used throughout the entire reproductive cycle.

After 35, the number of viable eggs begins to decrease rapidly, significantly reducing the frequency of conception, calculated per menstrual cycle. This process can also be affected by long-term use of ovulation-suppressing contraceptives, as well as a number of female diseases, for example, polycystic ovary syndrome.

5 steps to conception

Compliance with these simple rules will help increase the chances of conceiving healthy offspring.

Complete medical examination

Before you start planning a pregnancy, go through a complete medical examination and make an appointment with a gynecologist. He will make individual recommendations for early conception based on your age, medical history and physical condition.

For women aged 35-40 years, the American Society for Reproductive Medicine recommends seeking help from a fertility specialist if the desired pregnancy does not occur after 6 months of unsuccessful attempts to conceive.

Individual calculation of ovulation

Many women miss their chance to conceive by inefficiently using the so-called fertility window, which opens 5 days before ovulation and closes on the day of this very ovulation.

Ideally, with a classic 28-day menstrual cycle, ovulation should occur exactly 2 weeks before the expected day of the start of menstruation. However, this happens in less than 30% of cases. As a result, when planning for conception around the expected date of ovulation, many women in the old fashioned way concentrate only on the window from day 10 to day 17 of the cycle, thereby missing the “real” ovulation and the real opportunity to become pregnant.

Definition of the ovulatory cycle

Given that the menstrual cycle becomes less regular with age, it becomes much more difficult to predict fertile days after 35.

However, we can recreate the schedule of our ovulatory cycle using a monthly table, in which it is necessary to enter the results of regular measurements of basal temperature, as well as monitoring of cervical mucus discharged from the cervix during ovulation.

Consult a gynecologist if you have reason to believe that ovulation is not always regular or not at all, and also if the luteal phase (the period between ovulation and the first day of menstruation) is shorter than 10 days. These symptoms may be signs of a more serious condition preventing conception.

No stress

There are many examples when a long-awaited conception occurs after a desperate couple gives up all attempts to get pregnant and decides to live for their own pleasure or adopt a child. To many, this seems like a miracle and a gift from above, however, there is a fairly scientific explanation for such stories.

According to one study, women with high levels of alpha-amylase, a substance found in saliva that is a biomarker for chronic stress and reduced fertility, had a 12% lower ability to conceive within six menstrual cycles than a woman with low levels of alpha. -amylase.

For another study, scientists collected saliva samples for analysis of stress hormones from women who were trying to conceive, observing them over the next 12 months. As a result, women with the highest levels of alpha-amylase took an average of 29% longer to conceive than women with the lowest levels.

Calm, only calm

In anticipation of the cherished two strips, try to remain optimistic and mentally balanced, as the physiological effects of stress can not only lead to menstrual irregularities, but also cause difficulties with conception.

A randomized controlled trial conducted among women undergoing IVF showed that those who participated in a stress management program and regularly engaged in relaxation were significantly more likely to become pregnant and carry a baby than those who refused to participate in such activities.

Text: Elizaveta Petrova

Photo: vostock-photo

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