Secondary infertility is the inability to become pregnant or to carry a baby to term after previously giving birth to a baby. For couples who conceived their first child fairly easily, it can come as a shock when they run into difficulty getting pregnant this time around. It is estimated that as many as one in seven couples experience difficulty in conceiving a second child.
One of the main causes of fertility issues is age. Whether a woman has conceived easily or not in the past, egg quantity and quality declines with age. The men also become less fertile as they get older because of reduced sperm account and quality. Another factors contributing to secondary infertility can be ovulation disorders, endometriosis, everyday stress of parenthood, poor diet and lack of exercise, etc.
If you feel your family isn’t complete yet, secondary infertility can be just as emotionally challenging as any other fertility issue. You may feel guilty that you can’t provide a brother or sister for your child. Here is some advice for if and when conceiving Baby No.2 is more difficult than expected.
1. Watch Your Lifestyle and Diet.
You should cut out sugar containing and high glycaemic foods, as well as fatty or fried foods. Focus on a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, nuts and seeds, lean meat protein (such as fish and skinless chicken), and healthy fats (such as omega-3 ).
Smoking and drinking alcohol can impair both women’s and men’s fertility. So you and your partner should stop them. Also you should limit your intake of caffeine to less than 200 or 250 milligrams each day.
2. Regular Exercise.
Moderate aerobic exercise (such as jogging, cycling, swimming, etc.) 3 or 4 days a week help you and your partner ease stress and keep a health weight, which will definitely benefit women’s ovulation and men’s sperm production. However women should avoid vigorous exercise which reduces estrogen and progesterone levels.
3. Intercourse at Peak Fertility
There are many things about having a small child that can affect sex drive, such as breastfeeding, be sharing a bed with a toddler or have pain during intercourse after a traumatic delivery. So there’s not a lot of sex happening.
Pregnancy is most likely to occur with intercourse within the 2 days before ovulation. You can find out your most fertile day when your cervical mucus has become abundant, sticky and clear but your basal body temperature has not yet risen. Or you can use an ovulation predictor kit. Plan intensive intercourses (every second day) with your partner during this fertile window each month.
4. Seek medical assistance
You can and should seek medical assistance if you are unable to get pregnant again after six months of trying if you’re 36 or older, or one year of trying if you’re under 36. If you feel you’ve waited long enough and are anxiety-ridden about conceiving another child, arrange an appointment with your GP for a referral to a fertility specialist, who will help pinpoint risk factors like hormone levels, fallopian tube damages, endometriosis, fibroids, ovarian conditions and ovulation disorders. And don’t forget to check your partner’s fertility, too.
5. Try Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine
Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine could help regulate the hormones, improve the women’s ovarian function and egg quality, bringing on ovulation as well as increase the men’s sperm count and improve the sperm’s motility and morphology, which will boost the chances of conception.