No matter your education, career, experience, or age, the journey of infertility can feel like an uphill battle.
Whether you’re heading into your first appointment, have been undergoing treatment for months, or have been told donor eggs are your best option to achieve a healthy pregnancy, it’s important for you to feel prepared, knowledgeable, and supported throughout your journey.
In fact, seeking the support of knowledgeable fertility professionals from institutions like Donor Egg Bank USA (https://donoreggbankusa.com/) can be incredibly helpful in your journey to parenthood.
We hope these five tips for your fertility journey help you have a more positive experience throughout your fertility treatment.
Reproductive health isn’t usually a key focus of high school health or biology classes. Often, even those who’ve taken anatomy and physiology in college don’t have an in-depth knowledge of the intricacies of sexual health. Therefore, it’s important to seek help from experts and to do your own research.
By learning some of the basics of what to expect going into your first fertility appointment, you’ll receive a general overview of your fertility health and get an idea of the different treatment options that may be recommended to you.
Further, you can learn a lot by talking to others who have also undergone fertility treatment, or by doing judicious Google searches (be sure to stick with scholarly, medically authoritative sources and articles).
Be your own advocate
Be open and direct with your physician regarding how you’re feeling and what you need. Remember, your doctor is the expert and has received years of medical schooling.
Ultimately, they should be more trustworthy than ‘Dr. Google,’ but that doesn’t mean you can’t ask questions, speak up about any concerns, tell them if you want more aggressive treatment, etc. Open dialogue is key to a positive fertility treatment experience.
Feel comfortable and confident with your reproductive endocrinologist
If you’ve met with your reproductive endocrinologist a couple of times and feel like your concerns aren’t being heard or addressed, it’s important to remember you aren’t locked into using this physician or practice. You shouldn’t be afraid to explore other options. Do additional research and read reviews on other fertility specialists in your area to see if there’s another physician or practice you can use. The caveat to this is: don’t be a ‘doctor hopper’ (someone who’s constantly changing doctors). For your treatment cycles to be successful, it’s important to give yourself and your doctor enough time to create a treatment plan and complete a few cycles.
Surround yourself with a supportive community
Fertility, early pregnancy, and miscarriage have historically been considered private and personal, and they are. However, that doesn’t need to mean they’re secrets or off-limit conversation topics.
Each of these things can bring a wide variety of emotions and feelings of stress and isolation. Even if you’re going through this with a supportive spouse/partner, it can strain your relationship when you only have each other to lean on.
Consider sharing your experience with a couple of close family members or friends. There are also many support groups and counselors who specialize in fertility. Having additional supporters to act as listening ears, shoulders to cry on, and serve as encouragers/cheerleaders/prayer warriors, can help you feel more at peace mentally and emotionally.
Ask for financial assistance when available
Unfortunately, some fertility treatments can be financially stressful. Depending on your insurance, you might have fertility benefits. Thankfully, increasingly more companies are starting to include these benefits, but it’s still not commonplace. Research your medical benefits to learn if your plan includes fertility benefits.
If not, there are several organizations which offer opportunities for grants and financial assistance to help offset the out-of-pocket cost for treatment. Check out this list of grants and scholarships to learn more about your options.
We hope these tips leave you feeling better equipped and more confident as you move forward in your treatment journey. Remember, you aren’t alone.