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Creating a human is challenging. If you think about the complexity of the human body, and how much needs to go right in order to turn essentially a few cells into a living, breathing person, it’s amazing that we are able to create children at all.

It is for that reason not uncommon that some couples do struggle to conceive right away. While we may hear stories of couples that get pregnant right away, many couples do take 6 months to a year or more, with many – many – factors affecting this number. If you also have any underling medical or hormonal conditions, it may take even longer.

That means, even if you’ve been trying for a baby, there is no guarantee of success right away.

But that can be hard. There is the excitement of deciding you are ready for a child, and the stress, disappointment, and worries that come from struggling to conceive.

Typically, when it is difficult for a couple to get pregnant, one piece of advice that many people recommend is looking for ways to improve sleep and reduce your stress levels. Sleep is known to affect hormone levels and fertility, as is stress. Still, that can be a challenge. After all, if you’re struggling with fertility, you’re likely experiencing stress as a result. If you also have mental health challenges, like anxiety, the idea of someone telling you to “be less stressed” can even be laughable.

So, what can you do?

Seeing a Therapist to Help with Fertility

Can seeing a therapist help reduce infertility? It’s not entirely clear. We know that stress reduction, better sleep, and other issues that are often reduced when you see a therapist definitely play a role in the ability to conceive, but as we discussed earlier, fertility is extremely complex. There are many factors at play, and it’s almost impossible to determine what exactly is causing infertility and how it can be addressed.

Still, there are many reasons to believe that seeing a therapist can help, with benefits to both you and – potentially – to the baby as well. For example:

  • Stress Reduction – No one can say with any certainty that reducing your anxiety and stress will help you conceive, as human bodies are far more complicated than that. But we do know that stress reduction is important for fertility and for healthy pregnancies, and so reducing stress now has the potential to support the body and make sure that you’re able to sleep better, regulate your hormones better, and feel better physically overall. That has real value.
  • Next Steps – Sometimes, conception does require additional help and decision making. You may need to speak to doctors, or you may need to figure out what your goals are and what may need to change. These are much easier when you are in better mental health, with coping tools to help you navigate these decisions.  
  • Relationship Help – Infertility can be stressful on a relationship. Even though no partner is at fault, the frustration and process of trying for a baby can cause rifts that need to be healed in order to both give you the best chance of success, and also make sure you’re both connected and ready to bring a baby into the world.

It’s also important to acknowledge that, when you do struggle to conceive, the stress and anxiety you feel even after you become pregnant can last into childhood. These are, in some ways, minor traumas that we sometimes carry with us. If and when you bring a baby into this world, you want to make sure you are becoming a parent as emotionally and psychologically healthy as you can be. Children are stressful as well, and the better your stress coping tools and the stronger your mental health, the easier parenting will be.

So, Does Seeing a Therapist Help?

Therapists may not be a cure for fertility issues, but the benefits of therapy for those that feel like they need it can be substantial. If you’d like to inquire about mental health treatments that benefit those looking to become parents, please give Flourish Psychology a call today.

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