IVF has been a hope for millions of couples all over the world to be able to live the joys of parenthood. Infertility is not uncommon; one in every ten couples face infertility problems.
IVF or in-vitro fertilization is one of the most common assisted reproductive techniques (ART) for couples who cannot conceive naturally. However, the process does not guarantee successful results on the very first attempt. The odds of conceiving is approximately 15-20%. The most important step towards making IVF a success is knowing about the tips and habits which can boost the chances of a successful IVF.
How to prepare for IVF treatment?
- Do your homework
First thing first. Do every kind of research to find out about the IVF clinic or centre where you will undergo your treatment. The treatment process may be one. But, how the treatment is offered makes a lot of difference. Be mentally prepared for long term association. IVF success cannot be guaranteed in one cycle. Couples often require to undergo multiple cycles. So, it is extremely important to find out the location of the clinic, the doctor’s availability, the staff’s approach towards you, the skills of the technicians, the condition of the lab in which the fertilization would take place etc. Make a list of the clinics that offer IVF treatment and find out the details before settling upon the treatment. Additionally, you also need to find out the following information about the clinic or centre.
– Pregnancy ratio per embryo transfer
– Live birth rate of the clinic
– Cost of the procedure
– Accreditation of the clinic
– Experience certificates of the physicians
– Number of twins or multiple births
- Avoid augment sperm count and masturbation
According to IVF specialists, refraining from masturbation and sexual intercourse 3-4 days before the sperm donation or fertilization process can increase the chances of a successful IVF. The male partner should not ejaculate during this time. Sperm quality change over time. Hence it is important to get the semen analyzed before the IVF process begins.
Important lifestyle tips for IVF success:
It is important to understand that for any woman undergoing IVF or planning for IVF, every small and big habits play a major role in her lifestyle. From the diet she consumes to the way she deals with the treatment journey emotionally and mentally, everything makes an impact on her overall lifestyle habits.
- Good fats is a must
According to a study conducted by the Harvard School of Public Health, consuming diet rich in monounsaturated fats helps women trying to get pregnant through IVF achieve successful results. Monounsaturated fats are good fats which are known to protect the heart and improve fertility. Some foods rich in monounsaturated fats are – nuts, avocados, olive oil, sunflower oil etc. These foods not only improve fertility but also help in growth and development of the fetus. Adding good fats in your regular diet is the first tip for achieving a successful IVF. Adding good fats does not guarantee 100% successful IVF, but it can definitely increase your chances.
Here’s how you can revamp your diet:
– Eat fresh fruits and vegetable
– Eat whole grains and lean proteins
– Add legumes, beans, lentils, chickpeas
– Switch to low-fat dairy products
– void red meat ad processed foods
- Trust the goodness of meditation
IVF is a complex process. Most of the time, the repeated cycles, the effort and the expenses can take a toll on the life of the couple, especially the female. But the fact is stress can affect the reproductive system and delay your chances of IVF success further. It is normal for stress and anxiety to hit your life once you begin IVF treatment. But, the way to deal with anxiety is de-stressing. Meditation is the best way to destress. Breathing meditation techniques can reduce stress and allow your body to perform better.
- Say not to alcohol, smoking, and caffeine
Alcohol is a teratogen, which means that it can affect the normal functions and formations of the fetus. Therefore, alcohol must be avoided by women trying to conceive at all costs. Smoking is the other thing that may affect the success of IVF. Smoking affects the quality of the eggs and sperm. Smoking can drastically cut down your chances of conception through IVF Caffeine can adversely affect the health of the baby, not more than 200 mg should be taken per day by a pregnant woman or woman preparing to carry a baby. Avoid coffee and sodas. These are rich sources of caffeine. IVF specialists suggest avoiding caffeine totally once the treatment begins.
- Maintain a healthy weight
Obesity is not good for fetus development. The body mass index (BMI) has a direct impact on your health. Being overweight or obese can cut down your chances of IVF success. Similar harm can happen to females who are underweight. If you are on either end of the weight spectrum, make necessary changes and achieve a healthy weight. Eat a healthy diet, include cardio as your basic lifestyle habit.
- Avoid vigorous exercises
It is important to maintain a healthy weight for IVF success, but not by doing any strenuous activities. Indulging in vigorous activities can bring more harm than benefits to your body and reduce your chances of a successful conception. Heavy exercises should be avoided even after the conception takes place as it can cause implantation failure and pregnancy loss. If achieving healthy weight is an absolute need, try to achieve that by doing low-intensity exercises like yoga, walking, swimming.
- Get enough sleep
Sleep is an important deciding factor for the success or failure of your IVF treatment. You should regulate your sleep cycle prior to your IVF appointment. Go to bed early and try to get sound sleep for 7-8 hours every day. Any amount of sleep more or less than this can reduce the chances of IVF success. While sleeping, keep electronic gadgets away from your body. Getting sound sleep in a dark environment is believed to regulate the melatonin in the body which can improve the mental and emotional well-being of the female.
- Avoid harmful chemicals
Avoid chemicals that can interfere with your IVF success:
– Nail polish
– Cosmetics, soaps, shampoos, which have parabens, triclosan, and benzophenone
– Brominated flame retardant found in furniture and electronics
- Take supplements
There are a few important supplements that you can take once you begin the IVF treatment.
Start with prenatal vitamins before beginning the first cycle. Increase your intake of folic acid.
Prenatal vitamins can even help your partner boost their sperm health. Deficiency of vitamin D can lead to health development problems in the fetus. Hence taking vitamin D supplements is very crucial for successful IVF.
These are basic lifestyle tips that can assure a healthier and successful IVF for any couple. If you have any health complications or face any difficulty,, it is always best to inform and consult with your IVF specialist immediately without delay than resorting to any lifestyle tips from your end.