How Infertility Affects Your Mental Health

On the surface, infertility is a symptom of a problem. The North Carolina Medical Journal finds that the causes vary among male-factor infertility (30%), female-factor infertility (30%), and infertility that’s the result of a variety of factors or unexplained infertility (40%). No matter what kind of infertility you are suffering from, the process of pinpointing a cause typically includes a bevy of tests and exams.

Modern medicine is getting better at producing positive results for infertility patients, but you may still face psychological challenges. At Women’s Pelvic Surgery of North Jersey, we offer compassionate care that recognizes the sensitive and highly emotional nature of infertility and the treatment process.

Gynecology is an important part of overall health for any woman, no matter what part of life you’re experiencing. It’s essential to keep up with your reproductive health, from when you’re first sexually active through menopause and beyond. At Women’s Pelvic Surgery of North Jersey, Dr. Khashayar Shakiba and the rest of our team are dedicated to ensuring that you receive the best care possible. 

Infertility basics

About 5% of couples in the developed world experience primary infertility (inability to have any children) or secondary infertility (inability to conceive or carry a pregnancy to term following the birth of one or more children). In the United States, about 1.3 million patients receive infertility advice or treatments every year. 

As we stated above, the causes of infertility are pretty evenly distributed. Top causes of male infertility include: 

Female infertility is often the result of:

Infertility and mental health

Infertility treatments are both physically and emotionally rigorous. The heartache caused by infertility can have lasting effects. Harvard Medical School cites a study that found half of women and 15% of men listed infertility struggles as the most upsetting experience of their entire life.

Those going through infertility are most likely to experience depression and anxiety. A study published in the journal Fertility and Sterility studied mental health at five different fertility clinics in California. The results were startling: Over half of women and a third of men had clinical-level depression symptoms at some point. In the same study, 76% or women and 61% of men experienced clinical anxiety symptoms as well.

Women are more likely to experience depression and anxiety regardless of which partner is deemed infertile. But infertile men and women feel approximately the same levels of depression, anxiety, and distress.

When working through infertility issues with Dr. Shakiba, discuss and seriously consider your mental health. He can work with you to find the resources you need to stay emotionally healthy throughout this trying time. 

While mental health and infertility are connected, Dr. Shakiba makes sure your urogynecologic and mental health care are exemplary. Call our Hackensack office or request an appointment online today. 

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