Not all ladies know how to prepare for IVF (In Vitro Fertilisation). As a result, we have put together 6 essential things that any woman paring for IVF should know.
Really! What Is IVF?
It is a process of fertilisation where an egg is combined with sperm outside the body, in vitro.
IVF process involves monitoring and stimulating a woman’s ovulatory process, removing an ovum or ova from the woman’s ovaries and letting sperm fertilise them in a liquid in a laboratory.
Now, there is need for every woman who intends to adopt this process to understand this second phase.
“After the fertilised egg undergoes embryo culture for 2–6 days, it is implanted in the same or another woman‘s uterus.
Basically, the intention is to establish a successful pregnancy.
Interestingly, this second part of the process makes it necessary for the body, which will carry the egg, to be prepared for it.
Lately, we have come in contact with several women who have tried the process, but never had the opportunity to carry a child in their hand. Not everyone is successful.
Each time we find such situation, we do our best to take a close look at the individual. We carry out some analysis and we also find that the individual was not really ready for the process.
How To Prepare For IVF
Since the egg will come back to a lady’s body for it to stay for months, there is the need for the body to be ready.
The truth is that some times doctors will not tell you that you need to prepare your body.
Sadly, most of them know that you have built some habits around your diet that will be difficult to break.
Some know that giving you such information may create doubt and stress that may further reduce the chances of the process being successful.
Interestingly, there are things to do to ensure that whenever you try an IVF the body is able to keep the baby till the appointed date.
1. Eat Fertility-boosting Foods
Just like a woman who intends to conceive needs fertility boosting foods, a woman who will undergo IVF needs to also load the body with fertility boosting foods.
Foods with folate, magnesium, calcium and other minerals and vitamins are a must-eat.
Remember that the baby in the uterus will draw nutrients from the woman (host) and does not wait till the body gets these nutrients before it draws.
If a baby needs calcium to develop bones, the woman should have double load of calcium.
Likewise, other nutrients that the child needs to develop properly should be enough for both the mother and child.
This is one of the reasons most IVF processes fail. Failing to prepare for IVF is like starting a building without first counting the cost.
2. Adjust Habits That Affect Pregnancy
Smoking and drinking of alcohol are two habits that research have showed could affect pregnancy.
Really, when it comes to IVF also, these two affect the process because they alter hormones.
Once hormones that are needed to ensure that pregnancy stays are not balance, there are chances that the baby will not stay.
As a result, complications could arise and that will lead to the termination of the process.
A study by American fertility specialists says couples who share a bottle of wine a week reduce their chances of having a baby through IVF by more than a quarter.
Anything that should be a hindrance should be eliminated really.
3. Eat Food With Vitamins
Vitamins and minerals are essential for the proper development of babies inside the uterus.
But where these vitamins and other nutrients are absent because of the kind of food a lady eats, chances of having a successful IVF becomes limited.
Vitamins are better gotten from living foods – fruits, grains and vegetables.
The truth is that it takes three to six months for a follicle to mature. This requires that you begin to prepare the body long before you plan to undergo the IVF.
Many do not do this, because they feel IVF does not really have anything to do with their body.
4. Improve Sleep
Sadly, not getting enough sleep has affected some women’s chances of getting pregnant.
The same thing a poor sleeping habit does for a women looking to get pregnant is what it does to anyone that has got an egg inserted into her.
Lack of good sleep alters hormones in the body and once there is hormonal imbalance a woman is unlikely to keep a baby.
The formation of a baby requires calm nerves and lack of good sleep is one thing that upsets the body.
The IVF period is not a time to overwork yourself and keep your body busy.
Rest as much as you can, as you prepare for IVF to ensure that the body is calm enough for the baby to stay.
Some go to the extent of using their bedroom as a work environment, making their sleeping time irregular.
Keeping a sleep routine helps in adjusting your body for pregnancy or IVF process.
5. Reduce Stress
Stress is one very dangerous thing for women who are pregnant.
A book quoted a study as saying that “feeling relaxed and unstressed favours conception.
Also “raised levels of physiologic stress markers correlate with reduced conception rates”.
Another study showed that “state anxiety is associated with both pregnancy rate and live birth rate in IVF patients, an effect that is partly mediated by activities in the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) and sympathetic nervous system (SNS)”.
Sadly, in Nigeria, especially in highly populated cities, some stressors to avoid are the ones that indirectly put money in our bank accounts.
Some of them are having to wake up early to go to work and staying in traffic to and from work.
Another one we ignore so much is the noise on the street and then the dust and pollution.
Have you read 7 Major Causes Of Infertility
However, when you are opting for IVF, it may be right to ask for few months leave. This will help you adjust lifestyle before you go for the implant.
Before the insertion be sure that all the negative concerns have been eradicated or reduced to the barest before you begin the journey.
If need be, you may have to quit your job.
When I had hormonal imbalance, I had to remove the stressors and increase intake of fertility-boosting foods and then I conceived naturally.
One of the other things I did was the tough decision of resigning. Today, I look back and thank God that I did.
6. Use Breathing Exercises And Others
Movements are necessary additions to our daily routine. Not exercising reduces the functionality of the body.
It is recommended that anyone preparing for IVF should engage in exercise that are mild yet tones the body up.
One of such exercises that helps reduce stress even is ‘breathing deep into your belly’.
It is said that this exercise instantly eliminates stress hormones from your body faster than any drug.
Also, you can do it anytime and anywhere.
This works because every individual has 2 branches of nervous system – voluntary and involuntary.
The involuntary nervous system controls things that are involuntary – digestion, wound healing, hair growing, breathing, etc. However, we can control how we want the air to go into our system.
You may also find our article on 5 Fertility Boosting Foods For Men And Women helpful
Taking a deep breath changes your sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) to your parasympathetic nervous system (rest and relax). This helps the body to be more relaxed.
It is one reason it is recommended for persons with stage fright to take a deep breath. They often get instant relief.
Doing these things will help your body prepare for IVF and ensure that the baby stays when implanted.
While God helps you on one hand, you have your role to play to enjoy the blessing of fruitfulness proclaimed on every human.
Kindly share the post with your friends and loved ones to enable them know how to prepare their body for IVF if they pick that option.