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The Birthplace Blog

Filtering by Tag: Preconception

Surviving the Roller Coaster of Infertility

The Birthplace

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Whether you’ve always dreamed of being a parent or started to yearn for a baby later in life, having a child of your own can be a roller-coaster ride of emotions, and this is particularly true when you struggle with infertility and all that it entails. Having spent a lot of time with couples on their journey to have a baby, I thought that it would be helpful to note my observations on how it impacts your relationships and how you can be supportive of your spouse on this journey and trust the clinical aspects to a fertility expert who has delivered positive results in coping with this issue.

How Infertility Affects Your Marriage

Even the most solid, loving marriage can suffer when infertility raises its ugly head. Neha and Ankur are a couple that were often admired by many of their friends due to their caring relationship. At first, they started to question which party was "defective." Once the tests indicated that Neha was the one with the fertility problem, Ankur felt guilty, but deep inside, he was secretly relieved it wasn't his fault.

Over time, couples typically unite in their efforts to do whatever it takes to create a new life together, but after months, and sometimes years, of having sex on a rigid timetable, the romance may fade. The lack of spontaneity — having intercourse whether they are in the mood or not — the stress, financial burdens and medical interventions all start to take a toll on an otherwise happy marriage.

Frequent communication is the key to holding your marriage together through this journey. Openly sharing your frustrations with each other helps heal the emotional wounds that may otherwise fester. Talk with a trusted friend or relative about your struggles and frustrations. This is a wise way to gain a fresh perspective and to receive encouragement.

Dr. Samatha Kumar, is a senior gynecologist at the Birthplace with more than 11 years of experience, specializing in infertility, multiple births, and high-risk pregnancies.  To know more or to meet Dr. Samatha, please call 040-45208108. You can also write to her at  contactus@thebirthplace.com  or visit www.thebirthplace.com

Dr. Samatha Kumar, is a senior gynecologist at the Birthplace with more than 11 years of experience, specializing in infertility, multiple births, and high-risk pregnancies.

To know more or to meet Dr. Samatha, please call 040-45208108. You can also write to her at contactus@thebirthplace.com or visit www.thebirthplace.com

Your Other Relationships

Suchitra and Pavan found themselves avoiding certain situations. They would make an excuse not to attend a child’s birthday party or an occasion where they needed to support their nieces and nephews in their school events. They found excuses to avoid attending baby showers and going to the park, zoo or other places where they often saw young families. It hurt them both emotionally to be around happy families and their adorable children.

They started considering all the joy they were missing by isolating themselves. They resolved to enjoy life fully by being the best aunt or uncle they could be and to be a caring adult in the children’s lives of their friends.

Don’t ever force yourself to go to a gathering with small children if you aren’t feeling strong emotionally. It’s perfectly understandable to sometimes say no, but it shouldn’t become a habit. Cut yourself some slack; if you need to buy a gift for a baby shower, new parents or a small child, ask one of your friends to pick up something for you, or shop online. This prevents you from being bombarded by beautiful infant clothes, bedding and other child-centered gifts.

Coping with the Never-Ending Questions

Khusboo and Prashant became weary when simple curiosity made the people in their lives ask when they were going to start a family. After discussing this with a close family friend they gained a new perspective. They learned that this subject is often a way to make conversation and wasn't meant to make them feel inadequate. Nevertheless, to both of them it seemed as if the person was implying that they didn't want to have children, and if so, “Why not?”

You may be tempted to tell your acquaintances all your intimate secrets and regale them with stories that show how hard you've tried to have a baby. This isn’t necessarily a wise option. If you don’t want to hear the question, “Well, do you have exciting news to share?” every single month, then don’t confide in them. If you don’t want their constant and unsolicited advice, keep this matter to yourself.

The best answer is a simple one, such as “You'll be the first to know” or “That’s a question I don't feel like discussing.” The choice is yours; you don't have to answer a question that is no one else's business.

Clinical Options

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90% of couples conceive within twelve months of unprotected sex. If you are concerned that you have not conceived yet, it may then be a good idea to seek the counsel of an expert who can provide you with appropriate options.

Couples having trouble conceiving may increase their chances of getting pregnant through assisted fertility techniques. Causes of infertility in women can include endometriosis, pelvic inflammatory disease, hormonal imbalance, problems with ovulation, tubal dysfunction, hostile cervical mucus or idiopathic causes (unknown cause).

Fertility treatment can be quite expensive, so, it may be a wise idea that you explore all the avenues possible before spending a huge amount, which may not be necessary. Surgery may be an answer if you are suffering from Endometriosis, PCOS, or fibroids. On the other hand, fertility drugs may be all you need to become pregnant within few months.

Other alternatives include in vitro fertilization, intrauterine insemination, and intracytoplasmic sperm injection. Obtaining donor eggs and embryos, having a gestational surrogacy or a gamete intrafallopian transfer are other effective ways to become parents.

For women with blocked fallopian tubes or unexplained infertility, the best treatment is IVF. For men with low sperm counts, ICSI, a specialized form of IVF where an individual sperm is injected directly into the egg, is usually recommended.

Some couples forego expensive testing and treatments because they simply want to become parents, and it doesn’t matter if the baby is their biological child; instead, they opt for adoption or become foster parents to many children.

Whatever way you and your spouse choose to become parents is a personal and heartfelt decision, and the result is a gift that lasts a lifetime!

Note: Although the names have been changed to protect the privacy of the couples, rest assured that these are real stories and common experiences for those on the roller coaster ride of infertility.

Are you planning a family?

The Birthplace

Here’s something you should know about Preconception Care to ensure a healthy pregnancy and smooth birth


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Aristotle said that well begun is half done, and it rings true especially when you’re thinking about starting your family. When you’re looking forward to bringing a new life to this world – the first smile, the gentle grip of tiny fingers and that loud first cry – the best beginning you can make is by reaching out to your gynecologist for preconception care and counseling. It helps you prepare your mind and body for a smooth pregnancy and a healthy baby.

The foremost aspect of preconception care is preparing you and your partner with knowledge and information on the specific steps that you can take as a couple to ensure not only a healthy baby but also a healthy father and mother.

Seeking preconception care from your gynecologist will also help you identify and address specific health problems that you or your partner may have and prevent them from adversely impacting the health of your baby or yourself during your pregnancy. For example, if you have an iron deficiency, the most common type of anemia (low red blood cell count) during pregnancy, it can easily be treated with proper nutrition and supplements if caught earlier, even before you become pregnant. If you have any existing conditions for which you are on medication, your doctor may also advise adjustment of dosage during your consultations. The bottom line is that a majority of the health issues that affect the mother or the baby can actually be addressed well before your pregnancy, resulting in better maternal and child health outcomes.

There are many positive interventions through preconception care as well. Folic acid is an excellent supplement that has numerous benefits before and during your pregnancy. Especially during the preconception period, taking folic acid helps protect against birth defects and various pregnancy complications. Eating healthy and nutritious foods and moderate exercise are simple steps you can take that are in your control to be better prepared for your pregnancy. 

If you’re constantly stressed about work or are anxious about your pregnancy or anything else, always speak up with your partner or doctor and take concrete steps to manage and reduce your stress – even proper rest and exercise helps! Taking good care of your mental and physical health is important for a happy and healthy pregnancy.

In conclusion, if you’re thinking about having a baby, make sure you talk to your doctor – it is the first and best birthday gift that you can give your baby as parents-to-be!


Dr. Girija Lakshmi is an Obstetrician & Gynecologist with a focus on Fertility & Preconception. She has also trained in hysteroscopy and laparoscopy. She coaches and guides women through all the stages of their fertility treatments up to safe delivery & beyond.  To know more or to consult Dr. Girija, please call 040-45208108. You can also write to her at  contactus@thebirthplace.com  or visit www.thebirthplace.com

Dr. Girija Lakshmi is an Obstetrician & Gynecologist with a focus on Fertility & Preconception. She has also trained in hysteroscopy and laparoscopy. She coaches and guides women through all the stages of their fertility treatments up to safe delivery & beyond.

To know more or to consult Dr. Girija, please call 040-45208108. You can also write to her at contactus@thebirthplace.com or visit www.thebirthplace.com

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