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Are modern lifestyles creating infertility?

IVF should be considered as normal as rates of infertility grow, claim experts

Posted: 27 April 2011
by Louise Mellor
modern women
Modern lifestyles could be affecting our fertility

Modern women’s “lifestyle disorders” are causing infertility, claim experts at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) who celebrated their IVF Unit's third birthday this week.

“Women have switched to a faster lifestyle now. The stress is affecting their menstrual cycle and hormonal make-up, leading to infertility,” said Abha Majumdar, director of the centre of IVF and human reproduction at Sir Ganga Ram hospital.

The experts also cited later marriage as well as stress, erratic work schedules, smoking and contraception as reasons for an increase in couples seeking treatment for infertility.

Experts also pushed for the normalisation of IVF treatment as it becomes more necessary for couples to conceive.

"Infertility is not considered as a life-threatening disease," said Suneeta Mittal, from AIIMS, at the third anniversary celebration of its IVF unit.

“But the attention needs to be on it as there has been a lot of development and innovation on this front,” she added.

The warning comes as another study in the US has found a greater link between stress and infertility and recommends talking therapies such as counselling to improve chances of conception.

"Most women don't report stress. They say everything is just fine," explained Professor Sarah Berga from the US study. "It may be the fact that the people who say everything is fine are the most stressed. They have unrealistic attitudes about themselves and others and think they can get more done in the day than is realistic, and their sense of worth depends on achievement," she continued.

The study recommended stress-reduction techniques and laughter as a less expensive and potentially more successful option for fertility treatment.

Find out what you can do to manage stress before trying to conceive, why giving up smoking is a great idea and how your diet can affect your fertility.


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