How to Increase the Success of IVF: Full Explanation From Our Expert
Fertility drugs used as a part of assisted reproductive technology help couples start a family if they experience any fertility issues and can’t achieve a successful pregnancy through sexual intercourse. But they are not a magic wand that will work perfectly.
So what measures to take if you’re thinking of starting this journey? Well, there are some things you can incorporate into your life to get successful IVF results. Keep reading to find out what these are.
Top Tips for Successful IVF
There are many tips for IVF success you can try out to increase the chances of IVF success — from lifestyle changes to certain measures like supplement intake. Check out a video from our expert with a detailed explanation of each tip below.
Maintain a healthy weight
Weight is an important factor in a woman’s well-being, as it affects all systems in her body and their ability to function properly. With this being said, both being obese and underweight, which equals BMI >35 and BMI <19, respectively, leads to issues in reproductive health. In fact, obesity doubles the time of conception and being underweight increases it by 4 times.
So if you’re thinking of starting an IVF journey, make sure to check whether your weight is within the healthy body mass index range. Women undergoing IVF are recommended to reach out to dietitians and nutrition specialists if they need to work on adjusting their habits to achieve the goal weight for successful conceiving.
Also, you can consider the following tips for maintaining a healthy lifestyle:
- stick to the Mediterranean diet: make your plate colorful, include different fruits and vegetables
- eat protein with every meal, which comes from meat, fish, eggs, dairy products and legumes
- make sure your carbs are whole-grain
- don’t forget healthy fats from seeds and nuts
- eat more homemade meals
- limit your caffeine intake to 1 or 2 cups of coffee a day
- eliminate completely, or at least reduce, your alcohol intake
- avoid high-intensity workouts, instead opt for activities that increase blood flow moderately, like walking, jogging yoga or stretching
As you can see, there are some simple rules you can follow to stick to a healthy lifestyle. Following the recommendations above will help you maintain a moderate weight without adding any stress to your daily life. In the long run, this kind of lifestyle is highly likely to increase your chances of successful IVF.
Optimize sperm health
When thinking of how to improve IVF success, male partner’s reproductive health should also be considered. Of course, the health of the male partner is as important in the success of IVF as that of the woman.
To get a good sperm count and quality, it’s important to maintain a healthy weight, too, as well as get the essential nutrients or take supplements, like multivitamins. In addition, some simple body care, like wearing boxers rather than briefs, can positively affect sperm health.
Anyway, regardless of how good you or your partner think their sperm health is, visiting a male reproductive or fertility specialist, as well as a reproductive endocrinologist, as a part of your IVF treatment is a necessity.
Partner with an excellent coordinator, doctor and embryology laboratory
The experience of the medical team plays a crucial role in the success of your IVF. They need to have the expertise and familiarity with all the steps and sides of the process so that they can make the most favorable decisions for you. Be sure to take your time and search for the right coordinator, doctor and lab before going into the IVF process.
Besides their expertise, the personal connection you build with the specialists plays a huge role in whether you feel safe and can trust them as you go through the procedures. It is an emotional journey, so don’t neglect your need to feel supported and heard.
Reduce your stress
Stress is a damaging factor to all systems of your body, let alone the sensitive reproductive system. And reducing stress can be the most difficult challenge for the couple because there are so many causes of it. From a poor sleeping routine to a demanding job, you have to track down all potential causes of stress in your life and the life of your partner to minimize them.
Besides reducing the occurrence of stress, it’s also beneficial to look into ways to relieve stress. Enough sleep, good nutrition and staying physically active are all essential to reducing stress. Similarly, you can explore stress-relieving techniques like mind-body programs, resilience training workshops and acupuncture.
While considering how to increase chances of IVF success, smoking is one of the first things to think of. Smoking has a detrimental effect on the quality of eggs and sperm, hence directly affecting your chances of getting pregnant with IVF.
Besides, smoking has a negative effect on the overall well-being of your body and slows down important processes, like immune responsiveness, which may cause higher susceptibility to infection.
And to have successful IVF, you need all your body functions to work properly and keep your immune system active to prevent diseases. Therefore, if you’re a smoker, even if you don’t smoke regularly, quit it as soon as possible.
Look into taking supplements
As already mentioned, it is so important to provide your body with all the nutrients it needs to stay healthy. And better health can improve egg quality. That’s why one of the best tips for successful IVF is considering nutrient-rich and diverse meals as a must in your daily menu.
But even if you’re eating well, it can still be challenging to get all the essential vitamins. This is when supplements come in handy. Multivitamins or prenatal vitamins may be helpful in supporting your bodily functions at healthy levels. Of course, you should talk to your doctor first and get tested to see what nutrients you are deficient in.
Ensure you have adequate levels of vitamin D
Vitamin D contributes to the health of your bones and muscles, as well as improves the functioning of your entire body. Therefore, vitamin D efficiency affects your overall well-being.
Deficiency in the vitamin, in turn, has been associated with infertility and decreased chances of IVF success. And over 40% of adult individuals are deficient in vitamin D, which means you can be the one experiencing the consequences of low vitamin D levels.
So check your level of vitamin D before starting the IVF journey. This way, you can stack up on the vitamin before going through the cycle and expect a higher chance of success.
Focus on persistence and patience
As you can see, IVF success depends on a lot of factors. And while you can take care of many things to increase your chances of success, it’s still a complex process. In fact, many patients require more than one IVF cycle to get an embryo transfer and achieve a healthy pregnancy. And outcomes may vary significantly from one IVF cycle to the next one.
That’s why it’s important to trust the process and stay patient and persistent when you think of how to make IVF successful. Worrying and feeling disappointed is natural in case you don’t get a successful outcome on the first attempt. But do your best to focus on the positive aspects and keep trying — remember, poor mental health and stress is not beneficial for you on your journey.
Other tips to increase IVF success rates
Besides those listed, there are also other things to do to make IVF successful. One of the things implies taking additional measures to keep an eye on your physical health before and during your IVF treatment.
Maintaining heatlhy blood sugar level
In particular, keeping your blood sugar at a normal level is an important factor that affects your IVF cycle. The reason is that low or high levels of blood sugar are associated with decreased chances of successful implantation and a lower pregnancy rate.
So before you start your IVF treatment, make sure to do things that help manage your blood sugar, like not skipping breakfast, eating lots of protein and minimizing sugary and processed products, including both food and drinks.
Abstaining from sex before and after embryo transfer
Another important factor to point out when it comes to increasing IVF success rates is having sex when you receive IVF treatment. While you can have sex during most stages of your IVF cycle, there are some recommendations on having sex around the time of your embryo transfers.
The male partner should not ejaculate 3 to 4 days before the IVF procedure for sperm collection, which implies no sexual intercourse or masturbating. As for the female, it is also recommended to avoid deep penetration before your visit to fertility center for a transfer from an egg donor to prevent cervix aggravation.
As for after the embryo transfer, it is recommended to not have sex for 24 more hours. But besides these stages of your IVF treatment, sex is not likely to affect the success rate of in vitro fertilization.
As you can see, there are so many tips and tricks you can try out to improve your egg quality and eventually, figure out how to increase IVF success. From becoming more physically active and eating a bit more healthy to taking care of your stress levels and staying hopeful — all these are steps in the direction of better well-being and higher chances of successful IVF outcomes.