Stress and Infertility: The Chicken and the Egg, Holiday Time
From Dr. Paul Gindoff of Chelsea Fertility NYC:
Stress does affect everything we do. The mind-body connection is real. Conception delay or infertility is a real medical condition and causes stress. It can also be caused by stress. This is the chicken and egg issue. What comes first: the chicken or the egg. A clear example is ovulation, which is one of those brittle physiologic processes that can be in the crosshairs of stress effects.
If you have an ovulatory disturbance it is one of the most simple diagnoses to make simply based on medical history. It can be diagnosed in minutes by taking a brief medical history. Stress can cause poor ovulation and having an ovulatory infertility problem can cause stress.
Stress is the operative issue. Especially during the holiday season, we see an eruption of stress and its fallout in all aspects of our lives. This can synergize with baseline issues and stress superimposed due to infertility making the holiday season extremely challenging. For some, it is best to not confront fertility issues head on until the holiday season is past.
Coping with stress is most challenging. Many of us displace our anxiety brought on by infertility. Awareness of our emotions is most important to sustaining the process of fertility treatment(s) and engaging in the road to building a family.
Supportive and sensitive care from your medical team is fundamental in achieving adequate goals and success in regards to these challenges. However, it does require an awareness of situations and acceptance of the challenges. Sometimes work has to be done in conjunction with your medical team with support from counselors.
Regardless, this is a real part of the infertility process and should be dealt with head on! We all need to be sensitive to issues of denial, ambivalence and displacement to others of our raw emotions.
We at Chelsea Fertility are experienced and consider ourselves experts at utilizing our sensitivity, knowledge and wisdom to help our patients. We are grateful to them all for allowing us this privilege to care for them during this most vulnerable time in their lives.