Fertility Myths

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Couples struggling to get pregnant can be flooded with misinformation. Rachel Regis and her husband, Raul, went through fertility treatment to get their daughter.

Now, they're going through it again, hoping to give Carissa a little brother or sister. Regis said she's heard lots of myths along the way.

"The biggest myth is that it's all on the female," she said. "I really learned a lot that it's not always my fault."

Like many women, she was raised thinking all women should be able to get pregnant and if there was a problem, it was probably the woman. Fertility specialist Bobby Webster said that's just a myth.

"In the 14 years I've been at Woman's Hospital, finding compromised semen quality in 60 percent of couples coming in, 60 percent of the time," he explained.

So, fertility issues can be the man's problem as much or more than it is a woman's.

"Another myth we hear all the time is, 'You're trying too hard,'" Webster added.

He said there's no hard science to show stress related to a couple trying to have a baby is what's keeping them from getting pregnant.

"Remember on the evening news when you're look at some war torn country and eventually, the camera always turns to some skinny-boned woman with a baby. Those people are stressed and they were still able to conceive," he said.

Another myth Webster hears a lot from couples is successful fertility treatment all but guarantees more than one baby.

"Actually, we've lowered the incidence of high order multiples, triplets or greater, by limiting the number of embryos we transfer," he explained.

While it's very possible and safe for healthy women to have children later in life, Webster said it's a myth to think the hill doesn't get steeper.

"The female is made to wear out sooner than the male system because women are born with a finite number of eggs," he said.

Women planning to wait until after 40 to have children may want to find a clinic that will freeze their eggs until the time is right.

Meanwhile, Regis has some advice for any couple struggling to have a baby now or in the future.

"Don't give up, persist, think positive," she added.

That includes refusing to believe everything you hear when it comes to not being able to get pregnant. There are lots of fertility myths, but the good news is they're just myths and less for you to worry as you wait for your little bundle of joy.

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