Factors That Can Affect Fertility

Hands of a man and woman holding a pregnancy test.

The ability to become pregnant and maintain a healthy pregnancy depends on a complex set of factors that affect fertility. About 10-18% of couples have challenges getting pregnant or having a successful delivery, so it’s important to understand the internal and external factors that affect fertility when you’re trying to conceive.

Age

The number one factor that affects fertility is age. Women have all the eggs they will ever have at birth. That number decreases from then on, starting with a gradual loss of eggs. When women reach their mid- to late-30s, they lose more eggs much faster.

The quality of a woman’s eggs also declines, which makes conception more difficult and ups the risk of miscarriage. Male fertility may also decrease with age but at a lesser degree.

Weight

Weight is a factor affecting fertility that is usually in your control. Maintaining a healthy weight supports regular cycles and ovulation in women, plus healthy sperm count and quality in men. Being overweight or underweight negatively impacts your chances of pregnancy:

Lifestyle Choices

Your choices related to tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana can affect fertility.

Environmental Factors

Growing research shows that the world around us is also a factor affecting fertility. Exposure to pollutants and endocrine-disrupting chemicals can impact male and female infertility. This includes pesticides, phthalates, parabens, polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) and more. Ongoing studies link these chemicals to increased time-to-pregnancy, along with overall fertility.

Birth Control Doesn’t Affect Fertility

Women who use hormonal birth control are just as likely to conceive as those who don’t. Remember, there’s usually a short wait time between stopping birth control and the return of your fertility.

Finding Your Fertility Pharmacy

At Mandell’s Clinical Pharmacy, we’ll help you understand the many factors affecting fertility to help increase your chances of conception to grow your family. In search of a fertility pharmacy? Connect with us to learn how we can support you on your fertility journey.