Fraternal Twins: Characteristics and Fascinating Facts

Fraternal Twins: Characteristics and Fascinating Facts


The news of becoming a parent indeed brings a lot of joy, as the arrival of a baby is a delightful event. Parents shop for cute clothes and fancy cribs while relatives are off to the gift shops to get their hands on the latest toys for newborns. 


But what if you get to know, you are up for double trouble?


The news of having a twin pregnancy is equally joyous but undoubtedly brings the hassle of having to manage two babies with it. The only thing that makes it easier is that, unlike identical twins, fraternal twins are non-identical, and the parents don’t have to search for ways to differentiate between their twins. 


However, due to non-identical frames of physical traits, the parents themselves would have to spend a lifetime explaining how the different-looking siblings in almost all aspects are twins for real.


Let’s have a look at some of the common facts and characteristics that fraternal twins possess.


How Are Fraternal Twins Formed Embryonically?


In rare cases, two unfertilised eggs can be released in the ovaries simultaneously. If these two different eggs get fertilised by two different sperms simultaneously upon intercourse, both fertilised eggs individually implant in the uterus and grow.


This means that the fraternal twins only share about 50 percent DNA, unlike the monozygotic or identical twins, who share an absolute 100 percent. Hence, fraternal twins are not genetically or physically identical.


While the reason for fraternal twin birth is not precisely known, most often, it runs in the family, and a mother is likely to have fraternal twins if she or someone in the family has had a similar pregnancy before.


Unpopular Facts About Fraternal Twins

 

picture of twins holding each other's hand

 

While we have scratched the surface of fraternal twin pregnancy, let’s dive into some of the lesser-known facts about double newborns.


1. They Are The More Common Type Of Twins


When we hear the word twins, most people would imagine two identical humans with identical physical traits. However, that’s not usually the case. As per statistics, a twin pregnancy is more likely to result in fraternal twins. Around 75 percent of all twin pregnancies are fraternal twins.


2. The Fraternal Twins Can Have Different Sexes, Unlike The Identical Twins


A baby’s gender is determined by the chromosome brought by the father’s sperm to the egg for fertilisation. Since two separate sperms fertilise the eggs for fraternal twins, the gender of the babies can be distinct as well. It means that either baby can be a boy or a girl, unlike identical twins who tend to have the same gender.


This usually serves as a fun factor when someone asks the siblings their dates of birth, and the revelation that they are twins is made on people.


3. Fraternal Twins May Have Two Different Fathers


A phenomenon usually seen in movies is pretty accurate in real life too.


Commonly known as superfecundation or bi-paternal twins, fraternal twins may have two fathers and are generally seen in women with hyper-sexual activity.


The woman’s cycle will be interrupted by the release of eggs multiple times (a phenomenon known as hyper-ovulation), and she will be having sex with more than one partner. Hence, leading to the two different eggs being fertilised by sperms coming from two different fathers, making bi-paternal twins a possibility.


4. They May Not Be Born On The Same Day


Yes, you read it right!


Fraternal twins are not necessarily supposed to be born on the same day. They can have a week or even a month gap in their ages. This happens when a woman releases one egg during her cycle, and it gets fertilised, then her cycle gets interrupted.


Now when she experiences another cycle, she releases another egg while already being pregnant. The second egg gets fertilised upon having sex now, as per a phenomenon known as superfetation. 


This leads to the birth of fraternal twins with a week or even a month’s difference. This phenomenon can take place up to 24 days after the first egg’s release.


5. They Have Separate Supporting Structures


When looked upon in-utero, fraternal twins have completely separate in-utero growth and supporting structures. In addition, since fertilisation and implantation are different, twins develop separate amniotic sacs, placentas, and other in-utero supporting structures.


6. They Might Be Polar Opposites


Fraternal twins only share 50 percent of the genetic makeup. This leads to them being sometimes polar opposites in their characteristics and preferences.


While this individuality will undoubtedly be adorable, simultaneously mastering the routines and preferences of two different babies will definitely be a nightmare for the parents. This is because you will be looking after two completely different individuals who are not close to each other, unlike identical twins who have a stronger bond. After all, they share 100 percent of their DNA.


7. Fun Part: They Are Difficult To Differentiate


Fraternal twins tend to look dissimilar enough not to be labelled twins by the general public, who would often be found taken aback by shock when they learn the pair of siblings are twins.


However, often fraternal twins can look identical to a high level as well. For example, they may look like a pair of siblings with 100 percent shared genetic makeup. On the contrary, sometimes, identical twins may not resemble each other so much because of the environmental factors that may lead to slight physical differences. 


The only sure-fire way to confirm if a pair of siblings are twins is the DNA zygosity genetic test. Besides demonstrating the twin status, this test is also responsible and essential for determining the baby’s health.


Conclusion


Twins may be double trouble for the parents, but they are a joyful bliss as they fill the home with positive vibes and laughter. Their dissimilarities make them unique but quite similar at the same time as well.

 

Ovulation Predictor Kits: How to Choose the Right Fertility Predictor

Ovulation Predictor Kits: How to Choose the Right Fertility Predictor


It’s not easy to get pregnant. If it happens unintentionally – well, good for you, but if a couple is trying to get pregnant, they need a lot more than just sheer luck.


To improve the chances of a couple conceiving, Ovulation Predictor Kits (OPKs) come into play. These kits help monitor the time when you’re fertile and have increased chances of getting pregnant.


In this article, we’ll be guiding you through the entire process on how to use an ovulation kit, what results to expect, and should you go for them or not.


Let’s get started!


Everything You Need to Know About Ovulation Predictor Kits (OPKs)


Let’s go over the basics to make sense of ovulation kits.


Every month, ovaries release a mature egg into one of the fallopian tubes. Before its release, LH (luteinising hormone) peaks up to five times its standard value. Once released, the egg stays in the fallopian tube for 12-24 hours, known as the fertile window.


If you have sexual intercourse during this time, the sperms (that can live in the female body for five days) will fertilise the egg – and voila, you’ve conceived!


What Is An Ovulation Kit?


LH surge is an important indicator to determine your fertile window – and this is precisely the job of an ovulation predictor kit. Ovulation predictor kits measure the levels of LH in your body, allowing you to know when you’re ovulating and when is the ideal time to have sex to get pregnant.


The most widely used and accepted version of ovulation kits is strip-based tests. You urinate in a cup or on top of the stick, and that’ll be all. Then, after 5 minutes, you’ll get to know if you’re ovulating or not.


How To Use An Ovulation Kit?


Women with regular cycles should use an ovulation kit on day 14. It comes with at least five strips or sticks. You can either pee on it or dip it in a cup filled with your urine to detect levels of LH.


There are two lines present on the stick: control and test line. The control line shows if the device is faulty or not, whereas the test line confirms LH surge. If the test line is darker or the same colour as the control line – it means that you’re ovulating.


If you have regular cycles, your best bet is to check fourteen days before the next cycle begins. But it can get trickier for females with irregular cycles. In this case, it’s better to go with your shortest cycle.


Are Ovulation Kits Accurate?


When it comes to accuracy, ovulation kits do a pretty good job. There are 99% chances of knowing whether you’re ovulating or not. They are remarkably accurate in comparison to a calendar-based approach or maintaining a menstrual cycle diary anyway.


While they are not bad options – an OPK can help confirm if everything is going according to your calendar/diary or not.


Ovulation Kits VS Fertility Monitors


We understand that thinking of starting a family with your better half is an enchanting feeling. Therefore, it’s natural to have the desire of making sure that everything is perfect and spot-on. 


As technology has advanced significantly, fertility monitors have been giving ovulation kits a pretty tough time. So here’s a comparison for you to determine which fertility predictor is the best for you!


Fertility Monitors

Ovulation Kits

Allows you to track the menstrual cycle better No tracking facilities
Expensive Very affordable
Measures estrogen apart from LH Only measures LH
Fertility monitors can be compatible with your iPhone Not compatible with iPhone
It reminds you when to take tests No reminders
Easily understandable, digitalised results Unclear, faded lines
Maybe a little tricky to use Highly convenient and easy to use
It shows all your fertile days Only shows two days of your fertility

There’s another fertility predictor test known as “Saliva testing”. During ovulation, levels of estrogen and salt increase in our bodies. These changes can be detected in the dried saliva under the microscope, appearing as fern leaves.


However, it’s not very popular since it is inconvenient.


Pros and Cons of Using Ovulation Predictor Kits

 

ovulation predictor kit

 

Everything has its positives and negatives. However, we have to determine which side weighs more to go for it finally. 


Similar is the case with ovulation predictor kits. Following are some of the pros and cons that’ll help you decide if they are perfect for you not:


– Pros:


Here are all the reasons for you to choose an OPK:


  • Incredibly convenient
  • Available at almost every pharmacy
  • Easy to use
  • Very affordable
  • It does a great job at telling you if you’re approaching ovulation or not

– Cons:


Here are the cons that you might want to consider before buying an OPK:


  • You may get a false result
  • Sometimes it is unable to confirm the ovulation
  • Unclear results
  • It doesn’t work well for women with PCOS
  • You can’t track your menstrual cycle

Despite its cons, ovulation predictor kits are widely used by women. Whether it’s because of the accessibility or the fact that everyone knows about them – OPKs are undoubtedly popular among females!


Negative Results In Ovulation Predictor Kits


Negative results in OPKs are when you get a darker line (indicating the test is positive), but you’re not pregnant. It is so because certain conditions may bear false results. They can be any one of the following:


  • Stress
  • PCOS
  • Having a strenuous workout routine
  • Medications
  • Ovarian cysts
  • Insulin resistancE
  • Thyroid, renal, and liver diseases
  • Weight disturbances
  • Testing too early or too late
  • Irregular menstrual patterns

It will be ideal to consult a healthcare professional and discover any underlying medical conditions to resolve such issues.


Conclusion


It’s no doubt that ovulation predictor kits have made lives more manageable. There’s no need to keep up with a calendar and mark your cycles anymore. Instead, you can check if you’re ovulating or not, all thanks to the ovulation kits.


However, please know that they are not 100% correct. Certain conditions may produce negative results and don’t point towards pregnancy. But don’t worry, OKPs are still incredibly accurate when it comes to predicting fertility. 

 

How To Get Pregnant Quickly: 7 Effective Tips To Conceive Fast

How To Get Pregnant Quickly: 7 Effective Tips To Conceive Fast


It’s natural for a couple to think about their family. Some couples go with the flow, while some have a plan and want to accelerate the process. If it’s the latter, then you’ve come to the right place for all the information you need.


In this post, we’ll discuss some factors that can affect your ability to conceive, along with some frequently asked questions that’ll give you a better insight into the topic.


So let’s get into it!


Getting Pregnant


It takes more than just sexual intercourse to get pregnant.


You might not be aware of them, but they are equally important and directly affect your ability to get pregnant. Following are the seven tips that’ll allow you to overcome various barriers and conceive smoothly:


1. Adopt A Healthy Lifestyle


Nothing can be better than adopting a healthy lifestyle. And in order to achieve this, there are a few changes that you should consider.


If you’re a chain smoker – it’s about time you quit this ugly habit. Smoking has a magnitude of adverse effects on male and female fertility, making it difficult for partners to get pregnant. 


In males, smoking can cause the following problems:


  • Reduction in the sperm quality
  • Low numbers of sperm in the semen
  • According to a study, it lowers the chances of males trying to go for assisted reproduction studies
  • Decreases the efficient swimming potential of the sperms

Whereas in females, it leads to the following problems:


  • Disturbances in the hormonal balance
  • Increases the chances of falling victim to cervical cancer
  • Blocks the fallopian tubes
  • Significantly damages the ovaries

Apart from smoking, a high caffeine or alcohol consumption intake during pregnancy can be a huge mistake. Babies born to alcoholic mothers can present with congenital disabilities, fetal spectrum disorder, and have cognitive delays in the future.


Whereas for caffeine, we don’t know if it does mess up with your fertility or not. But it’s safe to avoid high amounts of caffeine, especially when trying to conceive.


2. Increase Frequency Of Sexual Intercourse


Well, that’s quite obvious. If you want to conceive in under two months, maintaining a healthy sexual life is significant.


Having unprotected sex every other day can highly increase your chances of quickly conceiving. But remember – don’t force yourself or your partner in a sex schedule. It can cause unnecessary stress and wouldn’t be as effective as it should be. So, take our advice and go for sex when you feel it, not just because you want to have a baby.


3. Track & Monitor Your Ovulation


To understand this a little better – let’s take a look at some physiology. 


When you’re ovulating, it means the levels of LH (luteinising hormone – responsible for causing the release of an egg from the ovary) is increasing. This is the time when you’re most fertile throughout the cycle and is your golden chance to conceive. 


You can track your ovulation by maintaining a planner or fertility monitors. These are digitised planners that record everything you possibly need to determine when you’re in the fertility window.


4. Discontinue Birth Controlling Methods


Discontinue any of the birth-controlling pills that you’re taking, and stop wearing a condom during sex as well. If you want that baby, there are going to be some essential and apparent changes, that’s for sure!


It might take some time for a few females to get back their fertility, or it can come back immediately for some. Whatever the case, don’t worry if there are any fluctuations or bumps in your menstrual cycle. It’s normal and doesn’t really mean anything.


5. Include Folate Supplements In Your Life


If you’re trying to get pregnant, starting on folate supplements should top your priority list.


Women are advised to go for prenatal vitamins so that their body conditions are healthier and more favourable for the fetus in the future.


There are high chances of women not finding out that they are pregnant for at least a couple of weeks. And, the neural tube of the baby (i.e. the head and spine) are the earliest structures to form. Therefore, they need folate for proper development and to prevent medical conditions like anencephaly and spina bifida.


6. Strive For A Healthy Weight & Exercise Routine


Having a healthy weight and a proper exercise routine is a key to living the best life – yes, in terms of conceiving too!


If you exercise regularly and have the ideal BMI, getting pregnant should be a piece of cake for you. But if you’re overweight or underweight, it’s evident for you to face some difficulties getting pregnant. This is because having too much or too little fat on your body can hinder the normal processes of the female body and lead to fertility issues.


Moreover, women who have a sedentary lifestyle and don’t exercise automatically have lower fertility. Therefore, stretching your muscles, doing yoga, going out for a jog, and having a proper workout routine is incredibly beneficial in helping you conceive within two months.


7. Get In Touch With Your Gynaecologist


If you and your partner have finally decided to get pregnant, consult a gynaecologist as soon as possible. They will not only provide you with some precious tricks to quickly conceive but also run a few important tests to determine if you’re in the best shape.


FAQS

 

a pregnant woman

 

Are you still having a few questions about getting pregnant quickly? We hope that this section will help you with them!


How long does it take to get pregnant?


Typically, couples can get pregnant within one year of unprotected sexual intercourse. Whereas conception (when the embryo gets implanted in the uterine wall) usually takes about fifteen days.


Do certain sexual positions improve chances of conceiving?


According to a study, sexual positions don’t influence the chances of a couple getting pregnant. So, don’t try to follow any guru on the internet – keep the sex natural and stress-free.


How can I boost my fertility?


It can be different for both men and women in certain areas, but these are common for both of them:


  • Aim for a healthy overall weight
  • Consume a balanced diet 
  • Put a brake on smoking and drinking alcohol
  • Women should keep track of ovulation

Conclusion


Whatever the situations are, don’t ever pressurise yourself or your partner into getting pregnant. Instead, work on your habits, improve your lifestyle, and frequently have unprotected sexual intercourse.


If you’re still not pregnant, getting in touch with a gynaecologist will definitely prove to be helpful.

 

How To Throw A Virtual Baby Shower: 6 Easy Steps To Follow!

How To Throw A Virtual Baby Shower: 6 Easy Steps To Follow!


Along with sharing an exciting time with friends and family, a baby shower is a fun way for the mother-to-be to feel completely relaxed and prepare for welcoming the new life. 


Since face-to-face gatherings are strictly limited, people are getting creative with ideas for virtual baby showers. The best part? You can also include those guests in your celebration who cannot physically attend the baby shower.


In this article, we’ve gathered all the best tips and tricks to help you plan a memorable remote celebration that no one will have to miss out on due to distance.


Let’s dive in!


1. Find A Suitable Date And Time


Picking the best date and time for a virtual baby shower might be easier than with a traditional baby shower – with no travel arrangements to worry about!


Usually, people throw baby showers around 4 to 6 weeks before the due date. But firstly, check in with your guest of honour to find a memorable date that works for everyone. For example, a weekend evening or a Sunday brunch is often a good call.


2. Pick A Theme


Once you’ve made your date and time selection, it’s time to pick a baby shower theme! You may not celebrate in the same place, but that doesn’t mean you should skip decorations. 


If you are hosting, put up balloons or banners in the background. Moreover, you can also set a festive Zoom background. Try Unsplash for a wide variety of free virtual backgrounds to add some fun touches.


3. Send Out Your Invitations


It’s time to send out gorgeous baby shower invitations!


With the party taking place online, sending out fun, digital invites to spread the word makes sense. So find your favourite virtual baby shower invitation design and create stylish, custom invitations to share all the essential details about your virtual get-together. 


You can also go digital by sending out an eCard for the special occasion using platforms like: Paperless Post or Punchbowl.


5. Consider “Stay at Home” Presents

 

virtual baby shower

 

A gift card for a grocery delivery service can let the new parents leave the shopping to someone else. You can also include a link to the registry in the invite. However, some people might prefer to send their gifts on their own and get creative with baby shower gifts – and that too is fine!


6. Plan Your Games and Activities 


With everything taken care of, it’s time to enjoy planning fun and silly baby shower games and activities. So here are a few games ideas that can be easily adapted for virtual baby showers:


  • Baby bingo: Find a free printable baby shower bingo online and share it with your party guests. Play along, score “bingo”, and win!
  • Guess the price: Pick some random everyday baby-related objects, and get guests to guess the price.
  • Sing nursery rhymes: Have a baby-themed karaoke party!

 

 

Back Pain During Pregnancy: Causes, Prevention and Treatment

Back Pain During Pregnancy: Causes, Prevention and Treatment


While pregnancy is a magical time filled with happiness for the parents, it certainly takes a toll on the mother. Apart from the sudden mood swings and weird food cravings, back pain is another con that the mothers experience during pregnancy.


In this article, we’ll cover the causes, prevention and tips & tricks on treating back pain during pregnancy if you’re currently suffering from it.


So let’s get into it!


Causes


If you’re experiencing back pain during pregnancy – congratulations, your baby is growing! However, it can be tough on your back and many factors, depending upon the influence of each trimester.


First Trimester – Early Pregnancy


During the early days, there are two leading causes of back pain during pregnancy: hormones and stress. So let’s take a look at how do they contribute to back pain:


1. Hormones


As soon as you’re pregnant, your body starts to release progesterone to assist many physiological changes that occurred by pregnancy. One of its functions is to relax the ligaments and muscles near the pelvis, which can directly affect the alignment and stability of the joints.


Another hormone, known as “relaxin”, softens the cervix and aids in the expansion of the vaginal canal. All these accommodations aid in the smooth and quick delivery of the baby.


Relaxin brings about these changes by further relaxing the ligaments and joints of the pelvic area that will automatically affect the stability of your spine and joints. Thus, all these hormonal changes contribute to the back pain caused during pregnancy.


2. Stress


Being pregnant is not a piece of cake.


While there’s the joy of experiencing a life-changing phase, pregnancy can be pretty stressful too. With nausea, unwanted fatigue, swollen feet and episodes of mood swings – stress is due to follow. Not only does it affect your health, but it also plays a significant role in causing back pain during pregnancy.


Second & Third Trimester


Once you enter the second and third trimester, and that baby bump starts to increase – your back is prone to more injuries and pain.


Here are the causes of back pain during second and third trimesters:


1. Improper Posture


If you’re not conscious about your posture or do not have a good posture, you will have increased chances of having back pain during pregnancy.

Moreover, during pregnancy, as the size and weight of the baby increase, your centre of gravity shifts towards the front. Due to this, you lean backwards to correct the imbalance, which may lead to back pain.


2. Increase in Weight


As the fetus grows in your womb, it’s pretty clear that there will be an increase in your weight. And this weight gain is directly proportional to the back pain caused during pregnancy. Not only this, but it can also affect your joints and cause pain in them as well. Therefore, it would be ideal for keeping a record of your weight throughout your pregnancy so that you know when you’re falling in the “danger” zone.


According to CDC, this should be the gain in your weight, if you are:


  • 28–40 lb (underweight)
  • 25–35 lb (healthy weight)
  • 15–25 lb (overweight)
  • 11–20 lb (obese)

3. Muscle Separation


The fetus literally goes like, “make more room for me, no matter if I tear your muscles apart!”


That’s right, as your fetus increases in size, it can stretch, push and can even separate the parallel abdominal muscles that come to meet in the middle of your abdomen. These muscles are responsible for holding your spine in place and hence play a significant role in stability. If these muscles are disturbed due to the growing fetus, you can expect yourself to be more prone to spine injuries and back pain.


Symptoms


If case you might be wondering, following are the symptoms that characterise back pain during pregnancy:


  • Pain that radiates to the back of the thigh or leg.
  • A dull, sharp or burning pain in your lower back.
  • One-sided pain – i.e. either right or left.

Treatment

 

a pregnant woman doing prenatal yoga

 

Well, lucky for you, back pain during pregnancy can be treated. Let’s peek into some ways that can help you combat this problem:


  • Sleep at your left and avoid lying straight.
  • Put a pillow between your legs and under your abdomen for extra support.
  • Get the essential maternal gadgets like a maternal belt or brace.
  • Try prenatal yoga to relieve stress and connect with your body.
  • Use a hot or cold compress to counter the inflammation and settle the back pain.
  • Start with some pregnancy exercises to strengthen your body.
  • Take care of your posture and avoid slouching.
  • Take pain medications that have been approved by the doctor.
  • Go for massages or alternative techniques like acupuncture or chiropractic services.
  • Avoid wearing complete flats or high heels.

If you follow these guidelines correctly, you’ll be able to reduce the severity of your back pain and even prevent it from troubling you again.


When to Seek Immediate Help?


While back pain during pregnancy is not an emergency and can be treated at home, there are some times when you should seek immediate help. 


Here are the following conditions where we encourage you to seek immediate help from a healthcare professional:


  • A sudden appearance of intense back pain.
  • A backache that hasn’t been resolved for two weeks.
  • Severe back pain while coughing or sneezing.
  • Back pain coupled with fever or vaginal bleeding.
  • Pain that is accompanied by urinary incontinence and muscle weakness, especially the pelvic and leg area.

You must be on the lookout for such symptoms, and if they seem to appear, contact your obstetrician-gynaecologist as soon as possible.


What Are the Preventive Measures?


If you’re smart enough, you wouldn’t want to become a victim of back pain. And there are ways where you can avoid back pain altogether.


Here are the preventive measures that you must take if you want to avoid back pain during pregnancy:


  • Work on your posture; you must practice sitting straight and squaring your shoulders whenever you remember.
  • Don’t sleep on your abdomen; always sleep on your left side.
  • Get the maternal gear as soon as you can.
  • Avoid wearing high heels or low flats during your pregnancy.
  • Consult your ob-gyn and jot down a few exercises for yourself
  • Always stretch your back – make it a habit!
  • Keep track of your weight and avoid getting overweight during pregnancy.

Conclusion


Back pain can indeed be a hassle whether you’re pregnant or not. However, if you want to avoid this issue during pregnancy, it’s necessary to bring about some lifestyle changes. We assure you that you can completely eliminate this problem by making some adjustments – once and for all! 

 

Fertility Tests for Women: A Comprehensive Overview

Fertility Tests for Women: A Comprehensive Overview

 

Every couple wants to get pregnant at some point in their lives. Be it a year or five years after their marriage – everyone wants to have a family someday. However, while getting pregnant comes easy to a few, it’s a challenging task for some couples out there.

 

If you have been trying to get pregnant and haven’t been able to do so, you might want to seek some professional help. For women under 35, the recommended time is one year. However, if you’re above 35, you should ask for help in six months.

 

In this post, we will be discussing fertility tests for women and when they should go for a particular test. We will be walking you through every step and the questions you should be ready to answer at the doctor’s office.

 

So let’s dive in!

 

What Is Infertility?

 

Infertility is defined as the inability to conceive after one year of regular and unprotected sexual intercourse. However, it’s not incurable, and by determining the exact cause, your gynaecologist can help you get pregnant.

 

FAQs By The Doctor

 

Once your doctor knows that you’re presenting with a complaint of infertility, they will probably ask you numerous questions. While some of the questions will seem pretty straightforward and easy to answer, a few of the questions can be embarrassing and personal.

 

The doctor may ask you about your diet, addictions (smoking or drinking), and in-depth knowledge of your sex life. Questions on your sex life will revolve around the frequency of sexual intercourse, history of contraception, and any problems during sex.

 

After a medical assessment, your doctor would probably want to perform a detailed pelvic examination as well.

 

What Causes Infertility In Women?

 

For you to become pregnant, you must be able to ovulate. After ovulation (i.e. release of an egg from the ovary), it is vital for it to smoothly travel through the fallopian tube and halfway there if it meets the sperm – fusion occurs.

 

After fusion takes place, the embryo needs to lodge itself somewhere in the uterus so that it continues to develop into a full-fledged fetus. Any hindrance in any of the steps mentioned earlier can contribute to infertility in women.

 

We have shortlisted some causes for you:

 

  • PCOS
  • History of Pelvic Inflammatory Disease
  • History of Tuberculosis
  • History of STDs
  • Structural problems of the female reproductive system
  • Endometriosis
  • Cervical or uterine cancer
  • Hormonal imbalance
  • Implantation failure
  • Failure to ovulate

 

Types Of Fertility Tests

 

blood vials

 

A wide range of fertility tests can determine the problem with you in just a matter of time. However, if you’re wondering about walking in a lab and taking any of the following tests to determine your fertility, you should stop thinking about it immediately. Only your doctor can choose which is the definitive test for you after assembling adequate information about you.

 

Here’s a list of all the various types of fertility tests that can determine the cause behind this problem:

 

1. Transvaginal Ultrasound

 

Ultrasound can be used to give a comprehensive picture of your pelvic area. In this procedure, the doctor inserts a wand-like transducer into your vagina, which is covered with a lubricating gel. The sound waves then provide the entire image of the structures and organs lodged in the pelvic cavity. TVUS is not painful, but it can be slightly uncomfortable.

It can help determine if there are any cysts, fibroids, infections and other abnormalities.

 

2. Pap Smear

 

You must have heard about pap smears. Women above 25 should get this test done every three years to remain on top of their cervical health. 

 

In this test, the doctor will insert a speculum into your vagina and will scrape off some cells as a sample. It is common to experience mild discomfort and irritation; however, it will resolve within a day or two. If it continues to persist, consult your doctor.

 

3. Laparoscopy

 

Laparoscopy is a diagnostic, surgical procedure, but it is minimally invasive with fewer adverse effects. A laparoscope is inserted through the incision made below the belly button, and the pelvic organs are viewed. All the pictures appear on the screen and help the doctors pinpoint the exact problem.

 

4. Ovulation Test

 

Your doctor can ask you to take an ovulation test to measure your levels of luteinizing hormone (LH). This hormone peaks 2-3 days before ovulation; hence its absence and presence determine if you’re ovulating or not. It’s a simple urine test and can be performed at home without any hassle.

 

5. Hysterosalpingogram

 

Fertilization usually takes place in the fallopian tube. If your fallopian tubes are blocked, you cannot conceive – it’s as simple as that!

 

To rule out this possibility, your doctor might order a hysterosalpingogram; an x-ray used to see the inside of the uterine cavity and determine the condition of the fallopian tubes.

 

6. Hysteroscopy

 

Another minimally invasive procedure is hysteroscopy. It’s a procedure that can show images of the fallopian tubes inside the uterine cavity, cervix, cervical canal and vagina. The doctor will put a thin, visualizing scope into your vagina and through the cervix to see the uterine cavity. He might want to take some samples and check them out for abnormalities.

 

7. Hormone Test

 

Your doctor can also order a blood hormone test or thyroid function test to know if everything is okay. Hormones like FSH, prolactin, T4 and T3 are important in regulating a regular menstrual cycle. If your menstrual cycle is irregular and disturbed, it may be a significant cause of infertility.

 

Which Women Should Consider Taking Fertility Tests?

 

Fertility tests are recommended for women who cannot get pregnant after a year of unprotected sexual intercourse. However, women with the following conditions should consider going for fertility tests:

 

  • Heavy, irregular or absent menses
  • Constant pelvic pain
  • History of PID or any other STDs
  • Recurrent miscarriages
  • If someone has already been diagnosed with structural abnormalities of the pelvis

 

Conclusion

 

In this article, we have described various types of fertility tests, their procedures, and why they are performed. However, only your doctor can pick out the appropriate tests for you, depending upon the medical history and examination.

 

You should know that infertility can be issued once the problem has been identified. So don’t worry if you cannot get pregnant, get done with the tests and hope for the best!