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It's time to make a baby. You and your partner ditch the birth control, chart your cycle, pinpoint Ovulation Day, and then proceed to make wonderful love, reveling in the joy and excitement of creating new life. Later, you make lists of names, even daydream about your child going to your alma mater. Then reality hits. You don't get pregnant.
In high school, they warned, "It only takes one time." But age, health problems, and the anxiety that often builds around an inability to conceive can turn that early admonition into a mocking refrain. Today, about 20 percent of couples find themselves riding the cyclone of fertility frustration, alternately flying high on hope, then plunging into despair as each month passes without a positive pregnancy test. For anyone who's been trying to get pregnant for at least a year (the current definition of infertility), Six Steps to Increased Fertility is a must-read. Written by the Harvard Medical School team Robert L. Barbieri, M.D., Alice D. Domar, Ph.D, and Kevin R. Loughlin, M.D., Six Steps guides you through the conception process, explaining what can derail it and detailing the vast range of treatment options for boosting conception odds--from simple lifestyle adjustments to fertility drugs to more aggressive therapies like in vitro fertilization. Along the way, there are supportive tales of couples who've survived the infertility ordeal and checklists of questions for your doctor. A medical glossary and a list of organizations that deal with infertility, mental health, miscarriage, and adoption are tucked in the back.
But what makes this book so appealing is the authors' refreshing six-step philosophy, one that melds natural methods with conventional medicine. Their perspective: technology can be wonderful, but it should rarely be the first step. Oftentimes, depending on one's age and health, changes in diet, exercise routine, and stress levels can make all the difference. Indeed, the cornerstone of the book is the do-it-yourself version of the successful Harvard Behavioral Medicine Program for Infertility that includes easy-to-master relaxation exercises and other stress-reduction techniques. In study after study, research has definitively shown that as stress, anxiety, and depression levels go down, pregnancy and birth rates rise. Six Steps offers sensitive advice and coping strategies meant to help couples understand that while being "infertile" can be all-consuming, it is not the sum total of their lives. --Norine Dworkin --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
We wanted to write this book to answer many of the questions and concerns we hear daily from you in our offices. Most of all, though, we wanted to write this book to reassure you that most of you will be able to conceive. from the introduction Yes, you probably can get pregnant -- and the really good news is that most of you can conceive naturally, without expensive high-tech intervention, using the information offered in this six-step fertility enhancement program from Harvard Medical School.
In the past decade, researchers on fertility and conception have made tremendous strides in their quest to help previously infertile couples conceive. While the headlines have been concerned with breakthroughs in high-tech interventions, other studies -- such as Harvard's ongoing Nurses' and Physicians' Studies and groundbreaking research at Harvard's Mind/Body Center for Women's Health -- have been quietly and steadily gathering information that is even more exciting. It shows how everyday lifestyle factors such as stress, exercise, and nutrition affect conception and how simple lifestyle changes can give nature a better chance for a successful pregnancy.
Here is the latest research gathered together and presented as a step-by-step program to empower you to make all the right moves and decisions to optimize your chances of getting pregnant...before considering high-tech intervention. You'll find out about the remarkable Mind/Body Program for Infertility that has more than a 30 percent success rate for conception, here described fully for home use. You'll learn surprising facts about the effect of weight and exercise -- both too much and too little -- on your chances of conceiving; about foods and supplements that enhance fertility and common medications that can inhibit it; about better ways to regulate and target ovulation cycles. You will be led step by step through some simple diagnostic tests to find out what might be the problem and given low-tech treatment options to solve it. And if extra steps are needed, you will be guided toward finding the best specialists and shown how to make the most of the current technology.
Each of the authors of this book is an expert in a particular area affecting fertility. Dr. Barbieri specializes in physical problems women have getting pregnant, Dr. Loughlin in physical problems men have in conception, and Dr. Domar is an expert on how the mind and emotions affect conception. Together they present a team approach that brings together leading-edge research in medicine, biology, and psychology, offering new promise for increased fertility. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
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