How Counseling Can Help You Deal With Infertility?

how counseling can Help You Deal With Infertility

Infertility affects men and women equally. The disappointments and emotional disturbances caused by this issue have increasingly called for the need to understand the importance of counseling as an effective method to deal with the pain of not being able to bear a child. Of note, this article also attempts to explain the issues affecting fertility in both men and women, in efforts to overcome them on both physical and psychological planes.

Understanding Infertility in Men and Women

Infertility has been often described as an inability to conceive. Since this, as stated above, affects men and women alike, statistics related to the same have provided enough evidence regarding this fact by stating that 35% each account for male and female factors and the remaining 25% account for a combination of the same for both genders. Interestingly, the rest of the 10% accounts for unknown or unexplained causes.

Male Infertility

There are innumerable causes or risk factors associated with infertility in men. For these being grouped into medical, environmental, and health causes, each of these have been noted to consist of a list of problems as presented in the table below:

Causes/Risk Factors

1. Varicocele (Swelling of the veins draining the testicles).
2. Infection (usually related to the respiratory organs).
3. Issues with ejaculation (sexual function disorders)
4. Intake of anti-sperm antibodies killing sperm.
5. Tumors.
6. Hormonal imbalances.
7. Gynecomastia (Abnormal breast growth).
1. Frequent exposures to industrial chemicals and heavy metals

2. History of radiation or x-rays.
3. Overheating of testicles due to frequent utilization of hot tubs or saunas
1. Drugs and alcohol usage
2. Smoking.
3. Tobacco abuse.
4. Overweight/obesity

Infertility Issues in a Female

While male infertility indicates the inability to produce offspring, the female side depicts problems with getting pregnant. Further, it is the women who most commonly come across fertility issues than their male counterparts. Statistics have revealed that about 10% of women suffer infertility from some or the other kind. This being stated, the following causes-cum-risk factors have been recognised to cause infertility in females:


This is the most prominent cause.  The possibility of infertility increases as a woman advances in her age. 

Uterine problems

These include polyps, fibroids, cysts, benign tumors, septums, or adhesions appearing interior to the uterine cavity. While polyps and fibroids tend to grow on their own at any given time, the septums generally present at birth. In the case of adhesions, these tend to originate after procedures like dilatation and curettage (DNC). 

Problems with fallopian tubes

Infertility associated with the fallopian tubes issues arise due to the problems, such as pelvic inflammatory disease (PID) secondary to the affections of chlamydia and gonorrhea.    

Issues with ovulation

Another major cause of infertility in a woman and happens when she is not able to produce the required quantity of eggs, even at least one. A variety of underlying medical conditions, such as hormonal imbalances, thyroid issues, a history of eating disorders, substance abuse history, pituitary tumors, and stress disorders account for this issue.

Difficulties in maintaining egg count and quality

Though adequate amounts of eggs are present at birth, precisely 2 billion, some women tend to run out on the remaining reserve as early as reaching 40 years of age. While others are diagnosed to have an abnormal level of chromosomes, this affects their ability to get their eggs fertilized. If at all they are successful in this regard, this will not support their baby’s growth. Additionally, a condition called balanced translocation is likely to affect the eggs released during ovulation. Though this typically occurs in women who are getting older and nearing their menopausal stage, these cannot be, however, ruled out in younger women.

Role of Counseling in Dealing With Fertility Issues

Role of Counseling in Dealing With Fertility Issues

Though fertility issues can be resolved to a certain extent (in both men and women) through assisted reproductive techniques like IVF and ICSI, there are cases where couples face repeated failures even after trying one after the other attempts, leaving them with a good deal of emotional and physical stress, also feeling hopeless of these procedures.

This is where the significance of counseling comes up. It has been believed that couples involved in counseling sessions for solving their fertility issues can derive benefits to a good deal. This is because this procedure provides a platform that can answer every query a couple may have. Further, since it is provided during the treatment process, this serves to invoke transparency between the counselor and the concerned couples.

One thing that the former should ensure is to have a good hearing of every issue that the latter may present with. Secondly, a counselor should be proficient enough to provide the required information, for the level of knowledge and expertise he/she may possess on the nuances of fertility issues.

Counseling for infertility becomes necessary when this will require consideration for surrogacy or when requiring a donor egg or sperm. Because there are multiple ethical, moral, legal, and social issues tied to the prospects of surrogacy in some countries, especially India, these indeed demand assuring those seeking it as a last measure when they have failed all options of conception.

How Does Counseling Work?

Counseling Partners Together: It is appropriate to counsel both the husband and the wife on the knowledge that it is just as likely for either or both of them to have infertility issues.

Recommending Couples to Try Conceiving Further: If a fertility counselor possesses adequate knowledge of fertility-related issues faced by a couple (husband or wife), he/she, per his/her expertise and experience, should suggest more effective measures for conceiving in hopes of achieving a successful outcome there.

Suggestions for Surrogacy: This is the least possible suggestion that any counselor can provide when it is determined that their candidates have lost all hopes of becoming parents, either naturally or through assisted reproductive technology.


The article on counseling for fertility issues in both men and women has, in the first place, served to explain their causes, as respectively occurring for each. This subsequently led to examining the importance and benefits of the process in solving fertility issues, and lastly mentioning the methods prevalent there.

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