How to Make IVF Successful on the First Try
IVF success depends on various factors. Some of these factors can be improved by an individual, while other factors that the individual has very little control over. The rate of live births per egg retrieval differs based on the age of the individual that is undergoing the IVF. Other factors like specific fertility issues, and even the standard of the clinic where the IVF procedure is conducted also play a part. Generally, however, the success rates of IVF decrease significantly as an individual gets older. Also, IVF success significantly decreases after the age of 40. For this reason, women that are 40 and above tend to use donor eggs. IVF success rates are not dependent or affected negatively by the individual’s age.
What are some of the factors affecting IVF success rates?
The following factors are considered when calculating the odds of an IVF procedure becoming successful:
- The age of the individual
- The weight
- The cause of infertility
- The total number of pregnancies that the individual has had, both successful and failed pregnancies
- If the individual is planning on using donor eggs or her eggs
- The number of previous full-term deliveries
What are some of the ways to maximize the chances of success of IVF?
In order to maximize the chances of an IVF procedure being successful, individuals need to tweak their lifestyle habits. It is important to scrutinize their lifestyle habits and make the appropriate changes because this is the best way to prime the body. These changes include modifications in all departments of their life like diet, exercise, stress levels, etc. some of the ways of doing this include:
It is very important to ensure that the individual that wants to begin an IVF process is on a healthy and balanced diet. It is also advised that they do not make any drastic changes in their diets throughout the IVF process. Also, it has been said by experts that a Mediterranean diet for six months before the IVF procedure may help improve clinical outcomes. This diet includes eating a mixture of fish, fresh vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and small amounts of red meat.
Researchers found that those that followed this diet had an increase in their chances of achieving pregnancy of up to 68%. The Mediterranean diet should include whole grains such as pasta. There should be fresh vegetables and fruits, and red meat should only be eaten once a week or less. Include legumes like beans in the diet, avoid highly processed food, eat more healthy fats like avocados, and opt for homemade meals instead of pre-packaged food. Also, excessive coffee intake can reduce the chances of IVF success by up to 50%. It is advised that individuals seeking IVF should take moderate amounts of coffee about 1-2 cups.
Alcohol and smoking
Reduction of alcohol intake during IVF procedures may increase the chances of successful implantation. Excessive drinking of alcohol greatly reduces the chances of a successful IVF procedure. However, a glass of wine or a random beer intake does not have any adverse effects on the chances of success. It is important to follow the doctor’s instructions. Some alcohol may interact negatively with some of the prescribed medication, so they might prohibit all alcohol intake. Also, after the embryo transfer, all intake of alcohol is strictly prohibited, as alcohol consumption while pregnant has been associated with fetal alcohol syndrome.
Smoking or vaping can negatively impact the fertility of the individual. Continuing to smoke during an IVF cycle can reduce the chances of the success of the IVF. It is generally advised to quit smoking when considering IVF as even smoking during pregnancy can lead to various problems for the fetus as it develops.
It is advised that the individual should reduce stressful situations to maximize their chances of IVF success; this does not mean that they should give exercise up entirely. It is recommended that an individual should not deviate from their normal light exercise routine. Individuals should not run more than 20km per week, as this adds stress to the body and reproductive system. High-intensity activities like jumping are also not advised as they can increase cortisol levels and limit the success of IVF procedures. Light yoga is advised, and prenatal or restorative yoga classes can be done. It is also important to consult the fertility doctor who will give you the safest and best routines to follow.
Individuals who get 7-8 hours of sleep every night have a higher chance of success through IVF. Sleep is the period when the body repairs and restores itself, and this can contribute to a successful IVF process and subsequent pregnancy. Melatonin may be prescribed by a fertility doctor depending o the sleeping patterns of the individual, as it helps improve sleeping conditions. Melatonin is also thought to increase the chances of implantation.
Various items can contain chemicals that are injurious to an individual’s health. These chemicals can also negatively affect an individual’s chances of IVF success. These chemicals like nail polishes that contain formaldehyde, and meat or dairy containing dioxins are toxic and negatively affect the chances of IVF success.
There are various supplements to take during the preparation for and the IVF cycle proper. Prenatal vitamins can be taken a month before the IVF cycle, these will help to increase the folic acid that is beneficial to the fetus. Other supplements should be taken as prescribed by the doctors. Therefore it is crucial that before adding any supplements to the diet, the doctor or the fertility team must be informed, as they can help determine which ones are safe and which are not.
Nutrition after embryo transfer
It is recommended that the Mediterranean diet should be continued after the transfer and implantation of the embryo. It is also advised to eat more homemade meals and limit intake of prepackaged and processed food.
It is recommended that the male partner should not engage in any sexual activity 3-4 days before sperm collection. It is also advised to abstain from deep penetration which may aggravate the cervix. Besides that sexual intercourse is fine 24 hours after the embryo transfer. It is, however, normal to want to abstain from sex for other reasons like bloating. Generally, it is alright to engage in sex only if you are comfortable.