Why has infertility been a source of stigma for women?
Infertility is defined as the inability or failure of a couple to conceive after one year of regular unprotected sexual intercourse.
There are two types of infertility:
a)primary infertility: It refers to the infertility of couples who have never conceived.
b)secondary infertility. It refers to the infertility of couples who have conceived at least once before.
A study shows that more than 70 million couples suffer from infertility worldwide. The incidence of female infertility is 6.9–9.3% in developing countries but is 3.5–16.7% in developed countries. In China, infertility affects approximately 15% of the birth population, namely, over 50 million infertile patients according to the 2014 National Conference on Infertility.
Female infertility is an inability to get pregnant and have a successful pregnancy. This is typically diagnosed after a woman has tried to get pregnant (through unprotected sex) for 12 months without a pregnancy but why has infertility been a source of stigma to women when female infertility results from female factors just about one-third of the time
Causes Of Female Infertility?
Anovulation is the lack or absence of ovulation (the release of an egg). It is a common cause of infertility. Anovulation is often the result of an imbalance of the hormones that cause a woman to ovulate and may be part of the condition polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
Infections can also cause infertility in men and women. Untreated gonorrhea and chlamydia in women can lead to pelvic inflammatory disease, which might cause scarring that blocks the fallopian tubes. Untreated syphilis increases the risk for a pregnant woman to have a stillbirth
Endometriosis occurs when the cells that normally line the uterine cavity, called the endometrium, are found outside the uterus instead. .
4)Polycystic Ovary syndrome
PCOS is one of the most common causes of female infertility. It is a condition in which a woman’s ovaries and, in some cases, adrenal glands produce more androgens (a type of hormone) than normal. High levels of these hormones interfere with the development of ovarian follicles and release of eggs during ovulation. As a result, fluid-filled sacs, or cysts, can develop within the ovaries. Researchers estimate that 5% to 10% of women in the United States have PCOS. The exact cause of PCOS is unknown, but current research suggests that a combination of genetic and environmental factors leads to the diseases.
5) Uterine Fibroid
Uterine fibroids are noncancerous growths that form inside the uterus. Uterine fibroids can cause symptoms in some cases, depending on their size and location. Scientists do not know what causes fibroids to form, but it is believed that there may be a genetic basis.
6) Autoimmune disorders
Autoimmune disorders cause the body’s immune system to attack normal body tissues it would normally ignore. Autoimmune disorders, such as lupus, Hashimoto’s and other types of thyroiditis, or rheumatoid arthritis, may affect fertility. The reasons for this are not fully understood and differ between diseases, but they are thought to involve inflammation in the uterus and placenta or medications used to treat the diseases. Both men and women can make antibodies that attack sperm or the reproductive organs.
A Cure To Female Infertility
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BENEFITS OF TAKING OVUL8PLUS
- regulates menstrual cycle
- treats hormonal imbalance
- corrects polycystic ovary syndrome(PCOS)
- restores and normalize ovulation(anovulation)
- enhanced fertility
- eliminates the effects of anti-sperm antibodies
- relieves menopausal symptoms
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Are Men Exempted?
No men are not exempted, infertility is not always a woman’s problem. Both women and men can have problems that cause infertility. According to the Office on Women’s Health, about one-third of infertility cases are caused by women’s problems. Another one third of fertility problems are due to the man. The other cases are caused by a mixture of male and female problems or by unknown causes
Causes Of Male Infertility
Low sperm count is when a man has fewer than 15 million sperm per milliliter of semen. Having a low sperm count can make it difficult to conceive naturally, even though there’s still a possibility that a pregnancy can occur, it is a low probability.
It basically means that the semen you ejaculate has fewer sperm than it should normally have. And if you have fewer than 15 million sperm per millilitre of semen, you have a low sperm count.
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SpermBoost is a formulation of traditional herbs with empirical evidence for centuries but now scientifically proven. The formulation is known to improve several parameters of sperm count, sperm viability and motility by 300%; these herbs also reduce morphological damage.
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Why Has Infertility Been A Source Of Stigma For Women?
Stigma is a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person. Stigma comes in many forms.
*societal level stigma: which is how society views people with a stigmatized characteristic
* individual-level felt stigma: which is how people with a stigmatized characteristic feel
*enacted stigma: which is actual instances of discrimination or prejudice because of a stigmatized characteristic.
Globally, infertility creates problems for couples, especially for women, who are often blamed for couples’ infertility and suffer personal grief and frustration, social stigma, rejection and serious economic deprivation. These women have a strong sense of stigma when others talk about their infertility, and therefore felt social withdrawal.
Most female infertility patients often have a strong desire to conceive and are sensitive to words such as “pregnancy” and “children.” Most of their peers already have children, and they feel different from others. They feel upset when asked about their children or when they face comments from others. They feel “pathetic” in the eyes of others and are considered a “joke.” To escape these inner thoughts and avoid embarrassing situations, they are unwilling to go to parties with friends who have children, participate in activities, or contact people, which might result in social withdrawal.
Factors affecting the stigma levels of female infertility
Women with higher educational levels tend to hold relatively stable employment positions and incomes. Their greater access to knowledge and their ability to study, communicate and adjust psychologically help them acquire effective treatment measures, relieve themselves from traditional discrimination, and avoid any sense of stigmatization
The employed female that is going through infertility but nonetheless has a high income will have a lower sense of stigma. This is probably because these women tend to devote more time and energy to their careers, recognize ego value, and win respect from others. Thus, work can help distract their attention from infertility.
Females with medical healthcare insurance had a lower sense of stigmatization. A study pointed out that a longer duration of infertility was positively associated with depression. Due to potential pressure from the surrounding environment and public opinion, a considerable number of infertile women choose to conceal their condition and even refuse to seek medical treatment, which delays their recovery from the disease. longer treatment periods or greater numbers of failed treatments cost more money, appropriate medical insurance can effectively alleviate the patients’ financial burdens, thus reducing the degree of stigma.
Females with ovulation disorders who are undergoing treatments have the lowest stigma levels, followed by those with tubal infertility. In vitro fertilization for patients with ovulation disorders and tubal infertility, i.e., through embryo transfer, usually has a higher success rate according to data from our reproductive center. In contrast, endometrial and unexplained infertility are more difficult to treat, which explains their higher degree of stigma.
How To Prevent Infertile Women From Being Stigmatized
Why has infertility been a source of stigma for women when it can be prevented? Below are way to prevent it
-Professional Psychological consultation
The consultants must have good insight into the patients’ emotional and psychological changes, understand the patients’ thinking, analyze the causes of stigma, and offer patients with proper psychological guidance and cognitive intervention. During consultation, nurses should play a pivotal role in addressing the stigma of infertility. Both one-on-one and group consultations should be performed because the latter can motivate patient-patient communication and mutual support
-Social support in the community
The most reason for stigma is rejection and discrimination from the outside world and even from relatives and friends. Establishment of a “care-support” education club in the community is recommended for infertile women. On the one hand, the population can be educated in the club with knowledge of social care, through which the public’s stereotypes can be corrected, and a more tolerant and positive social environment can be created for patients . On the other hand, family members and relatives should be educated to provide patients with more support and care to prevent patients from feeling alienated. This will undoubtedly help alleviate the patients’ stress and improve their self-confidence and self-esteem.
– Good public medical healthcare should be implemented
The costs of infertility treatment are high because infertility has not yet been covered by medical insurance in some parts of the world. Since economic factors are tightly associated with stigma, the establishment of targeted medical insurance plans or expense reimbursement can help patients accept more active interventions, therefore relieving a great burden on patients and their families.
In conclusion, Why has infertility been a source of stigma for women?
infertile men tend to hide the truth, some men are not willing to accept physical examination. Thus, infertility tends to be attributed to women by society, regardless of whether women accept it.
A lack of investigation of infertile men will aggravate society’s misunderstanding of women with infertility and women’s own suspicion of themselves. This is not good for the women because as stated above, infertility is a mixture of male and female problems.