Infertility is not an easy situation to deal with. Infertility is one of the most physically and emotionally exhausting conditions for a couple. Feelings like losing control of your body and your future can be very stressful. Stress is one of the biggest risk factors to be avoided when a couple is trying to get pregnant.

Couple in stress
“It is a vicious cycle, stress causes infertility, and infertility itself increases stress.”

Infertility causes a wide range of mental health conditions that affect your mood, thinking, and behavior. Many people have mental health concerns at this time. But a mental health concern becomes a mental illness when ongoing stress affects your ability to function. A mental illness can make you miserable and cause problems in your daily life, such as at work or in relationships.

Infertility can lead to childlessness. It may further lead to –

  • Hopeless and depression
  • Family discord and disturbed relationships
  • Need for time and money for expensive and elaborate fertility treatment (including artificial insemination, IVF, and other procedures

Infertility treatments are very expensive and sometimes involve uncomfortable procedures. Infertility treatment itself is very torturesome and stressful because some couples are not financially adequate.

Couples experiencing psychological stress had poorer results with infertility treatment. Try to reduce stress in your life before trying to become pregnant.

Management emotional stress during treatment

1. Express yourself

Infertility comes with a wave of emotions like embarrassment, guilt, sadness, grieving, and so forth. Everyone experiences them differently. No person’s infertility journey is identical to another’s. It’s ok to work through your feelings and talk about them with someone closest to you or your partner.

This is especially hard when everyone around you seems to be conceiving without trouble. If you need to, reach out to a professional therapist or counselor who can walk you through this distressing time.  Some licensed therapists deal strictly with people or couples dealing with infertility.

Express yourself

2. Stay in touch with a loved one

Talking to your partner, family and friends can be very beneficial. The best support often comes from loved ones and those closest to you.

3. Eating a good and balanced diet

In general, you should try to eat a healthy, well-balanced, and nutritious diet. Avoid stimulants like caffeine and tobacco as much as possible, because they can make feel irritable and on edge, which is stressful in itself. Also, try to avoid refined sugars (often found in manufactured foods) because the way they are metabolized in the body can also make you feel tired and irritable.

4. Taking regular exercise

Stressful situations increase the level of stress hormones such as adrenaline and cortisol in your body. These are the “fight or flight” hormones. These are designed to protect us from immediate bodily harm when we are under threat.  However, stress in the modern age is rarely remedied by a fight or flight response. Physical exercise can be used as a surrogate to metabolise the excessive stress hormones and restore your body and mind to a calmer, more relaxed state.

Try to incorporate some physical activity into your daily routine on a regular basis. It can be scheduled either before or after work or at lunchtime. Regular physical activity will also improve the quality of your sleep

5. Getting enough sleep

A lack of sleep is a significant cause of stress, and sleep is also affected by stress. This, therefore, creates a vicious cycle. Try to get into a good sleep routine. 

Make sure that your bedroom is a tranquil oasis with no reminders of the things that cause stress.  
Avoid caffeine and excessive alcohol during the evening. Stop doing any mentally demanding work (and also avoid phones and other screens) several hours before going to bed so that you give your brain time to calm down. 
Take a warm bath or read a calming, undemanding book for a few minutes. It will relax your body, tire your eyes and help you forget about the things that worry you.


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