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Studies Show Link Between Stress and Infertility But Not Between Stress and IVF Outcomes

Posted in In Vitro Fertilization, Infertility


2 Minute Read:

Stress is the natural way the body reacts when faced with a difficult situation. It is generally meant to make you more alert to dangers and prepares you to fight or run. 

However, when stress continues for extended periods without relief, it can have serious consequences. For instance, it can lead to issues such as headaches, digestive problems, high blood pressure, chest pain, insomnia, and lack of interest in sex and other activities that you usually enjoy. 

But did you know that stress can negatively affect your fertility? 

Sad couple sitting on a bed, holding a pregnancy test.

How Does Stress Affect Fertility?

Several studies have found a link between the level of stress that women experience on a day-to-day basis and their ability to get pregnant. 

Indeed, women who are stressed can take up to 29 percent longer to conceive compared to those in good mental health status. 

This is probably because the body is smart enough to know that periods of intense stress are not the best time to begin trying to conceive. 

Unfortunately, infertility can increase the level of stress and make it even more difficult for a woman to get pregnant. In other words, stress and infertility could end up getting into a vicious cycle that can be quite difficult to break.

Does Stress Affect the Results of IVF?

There is a general belief that high levels of stress can negatively affect the outcomes of in vitro fertilization (IVF).

However, the truth is that science disagrees with this notion. Indeed, recent studies have shown no causal or correlational relationship between stress and IVF results. Therefore, high stress levels should not impact your IVF success.

This is good news for couples considering or beginning their IVF treatments who are already feeling stress due to their fertility complications.  

What Should You Know?

Stress and fertility are closely related. Research shows that it is more complicated for a woman to become pregnant when she is overly stressed; however, infertility can be a significant cause for stress.

This fact can start a vicious cycle that is tough to break. 

Fortunately, IVF success is still very possible and within your grasp.