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The World Health Organization (WHO) calls infertility “a disease of the reproductive system defined by the failure to achieve a clinical pregnancy after 12 months or more of regular unprotected sexual intercourse.”
Infertility can occur in both women and men. Primary infertility is infertility in a couple who have never had a child, while secondary infertility is failure to conceive following a previous pregnancy. A woman who doesn’t conceive and/or is unable to carry a full-term pregnancy is labeled as infertile.
Causes of infertility in women
Infertility in women is caused by many factors like infections and ageing amongst others like the following:
- High FSH - Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH) is a hormone secreted by the pituitary gland in the body. It stimulates follicle growth in the ovary and causes the eggs to mature for fertilization. FSH levels increase with age and high FSH levels in blood can mean that the ovaries are not functioning too well and hence it can be a likely reason for infertility.
- Blocked fallopian tubes - Blocked fallopian tubes or ‘fallopian tube obstruction’ is the biggest reason for infertility in women. We all know that fertilization happens inside the fallopian tubes, so an obstruction here means an absence of fertilization and pregnancy.
- Endometriosis - Women with endometriosis experience a drop in fertility by almost 12-35%. It is a condition where the lining of the uterus starts growing, not in the uterus, but elsewhere in the abdomen i.e. ovaries, fallopian tube and the pelvic area.
- Fibroids- These are non-cancerous tumours inside or around the uterus.
- Age- The biggest reason for infertility in women is their age. If a woman’s age is 35 plus, her ovaries do not function properly and release less eggs, which are not very healthy.
- Hormonal imbalance - These cause ovulatory malfunctions and poor egg development.
- Polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) - PCOS is a type of hormonal imbalance, which leads to production of excessive male hormones in a woman’s body, thereby causing infertility.
Can Ayurveda boost fertility in women?
According to Ayurveda, infertility arises when ‘shukra dhatu’, which produces eggs in women and sperms in men, is weak due to lack of proper nutrition. This could be due to poor digestion or an absence of a balanced diet or due to the presence of ‘ama’ or toxins in the body.
According to Ayurveda, sexual indulgence and promiscuity can also cause infertility due to the decrease in ‘shukra dhatu’.
Ayurvedic fertility enhancers for women
- Ashoka – It stimulates the endometrium found in the uterus and ovaries and aids in ovulation.
- Lodhra – It cures all female disorders that stop conception and regulates levels of reproductive hormones like FSH and LH, which are essential for conception.
- Shatavari – It nourishes the ovum or egg and enhances fertility as it contains estrogen-like compounds.
- Gokshura – This herb is helpful for both men and women. It works as a fertility tonic in women by stimulating the ovaries and thus cures PCOS, a leading cause of female infertility.
Ayurveda also recommends a diet rich in food items like ghee, milk, almonds, walnuts, sesame and pumpkin seeds to improve overall health and thus enhance levels of ‘shukra dhatu’ in the body. Since ‘vata’ dosha is closely associated with the reproductive system in women, Ayurveda also assigns a lot of value to its regulation for proper ovulation and stress control. If you wish to discuss about any specific problem, you can consult an ayurveda.
I want to conceive. I had got 6.5% glycosylated haemoglobin in blood report but if I checked my blood sugar levels it never exceeded 90 in fasting so I want to know am I diabetic or not. I have to cut off sugar totally or l can have some.
What is diabetes?
It means that insulin secretion from pancreas is missing or is reduced.
insulin is there but is less effective,ultimately leading to increase in blood sugar levels.
Fasting blood sugar above 126mg/dl.and 2 hrs after meal /any time blood sugar level more than 200mg/dl means person has diabetes.
I am suffering from thyroid, blood pleasure above 140-90 & also I am taking lithium 250 mg per day, oleanz 2.5mg.
Am diabetic and was talking New Triclazone 80 and once in a week 20 dosage of insulin Human Actrapid. But 4 months before because of non availability of triclazone tab I took Glicicide 80 as substitute. After that I have faced severe re action from this medicine. Further more triclazone also started re acting. Now am taking insulin Mustard 30, 20 dosage each and an ayurvedic medicine with this insulin but still my blood level is at 240 and more. Please advise suitable medicine for me which will be available in INDIA.
There can be a number of reasons that lead to infertility in women. Endometriosis is one of them. It is a benign condition where the endometrium, which includes the tissues that form the lining inside the uterus, grows outside the uterus. Apart from infertility, it may also cause pelvic pain in women.
There are no such symptoms of endometriosis apart from pelvic pain and it cannot be detected without surgery. Thus, it is very difficult to diagnose this disease and state how common it is. However, research says that the prevalence of this disease in women in their reproductive age is between 3 to 10 per cent.
It is found that endometriosis sometimes leads to infertility. Here is how:
Abdominal Adhesions and Infertility
Normally, the endometriosis implants develop in the abdomen. Then the body surrounds them with connective tissues. The reason for doing so is isolating the implants, so that they cannot harm your body.
Now, sometimes these adhesions can create a blockage in the opening of the fallopian tube or may also pinch off the fallopian tube. This will result in obstruction in the fertilisation of egg and the sperm and thus fertilization will not take place; so there are no chances of conceiving. These obstructions when diagnosed can be treated with surgery.
Secretions from implants
Endometrium plays a vital role in conception where the tissues secrete a wide variety of hormones and nutrients. Now, the endometrial implant also functions in the same way and secretes those hormones. The difference is that it does not deposit them in the lumen of the womb, and it is released in the abdominal cavity. In these substances, there may be some hormones that are responsible for infertility.
Prostaglandins are other hormones that are secreted by the endometrium normally. It helps in a lot of body processes that include various stages of menstrual cycle and pregnancy.
This hormone is required for a lot of functions such as ovulation, sperm mobility, and regression of corpus luteum, immune interaction, menstrual cramps and contraction of the uterus at birth.
Just like the endometrium, the implants also secrete these hormones. And the problem that is caused by the implant secreted prostaglandin hormone is that they are released in the abdomen and not in the womb. Moreover, they are not secreted at the right time, thus sending a wrong message to the brain.
A woman with a few days of pregnancy may face a miscarriage because the ovary will get a signal to start the menstrual cycle, and the womb lining where the egg is implanted will be expelled.
If you too are fearing of getting this disease, it's better to visit your Gynecologist soon.