5 Things Every Woman Needs To Know About Fertility

Frequently Asked Questions About Fertility

baby holding finger

Fertility. Normally we don't care about it until we decide we want to have children and find ourselves suddenly needing it. But what actually goes into conceiving a baby? It's more complicated than simply having an egg that's ready to link up with a sperm cell. It's important to ensure your eggs are healthy, so they'll be able to properly function when you want them to. If you've been generally taking care of yourself, no worries. Odds are, your eggs are in fabulous shape. If you haven't been taking care of yourself, still don't sweat. Suzanne Fenske, M. D., assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive science at the Icahn School of Medicine, is going to help answer some of the most common questions women have about fertility. Read on to find what you need to know.  

1. Can I develop more eggs?

No. Fenske says women are already born with all of their eggs - about 2 million - and you can't develop more throughout your life. You gradually lose them naturally through time and menstrual cycles, but still. 2 million? That's more than you'll ever need. You're set!  

2. Does going on the pill impact fertility?

It doesn't. Even though you don't ovulate when you're on birth control, it doesn't mean anything bad is happening to your eggs. They're merely not being released. Just remember, your eggs are continuing to naturally weaken and die off with time, so not ovulating doesn't mean you're developing a stockpile for the future.  

3. Do IUDs impact fertility?

Nope. IUDs are another form of birth control, and don't negatively affect fertility. You still ovulate with this little device, but your uterus is unable to support a fertilized egg. Once the fertilized egg is gone, you're back to normal.  

4. Can you still get pregnant if you don't orgasm?

Of course. Although an orgasm is desired, the absence of one won't decrease your chance of pregnancy. Fenske says you're golden "as long as an egg is released at the same time as semen arrives." 

5. Can certain foods induce labor?

No. Eating specific foods to trigger labor is a complete myth. So far, no type of food has been proven to induce labor. Fertility can seem complicated at times, but remember not to stress about it too much. Just take care of yourself and your body should take care of the rest for you!

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