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8 Emotional Wellness Tips for Couples Preparing For IVF

Emotional Support, IVF
8 Emotional Wellness Tips for Couples Preparing For IVF

Delay in fertility treatment during the Covid-19 pandemic can cause stress and anxiety, and it is completely understandable. Hospital visits and treatments are nowadays delayed or postponed, which means the idea of starting a family will also be postponed. The Covid-19 pandemic presents an unprecedented threat of unimaginable proportion to the psychological and emotional well-being of infertile couple. This article gives 8 tips to manage mental health for couples dealing with infertility.

Gearing yourself up mentally and emotionally for the treatment plan,medications, and procedures takes energy and commitment and keeping that momentum going indefinitely can cause anxiety and stress.Factors which contribute to depression and anxiety felt as a result of infertility includes medication and injections, financial concerns, uncertainty about the treatment outcome.Typical emotional reactions include shock, depression,grief, frustration, decreased confidence,low self-esteem and loss of a sense of control over the future

Some ways to minimize stress during covid includes,

  • Eating healthy diet
  • Walking and aerobic exercise
  • Yoga and meditation
  • Reaching out to friends and family
  • Self-help books
  • Support groups specifically focused on fertility patients
  • Focus on positive thinking

 

**Levels of depression and anxiety vary from person to person

  • Women presenting for IVF were more depressed had lower self-esteem and were less confident than a control group of fertile women.
  • Depression, anxiety, hostility scores tended to be higher in women at the time of embryo than the previous visits.

There is evidence to indicate that depression may negatively affect success rate in infertility treatment. Stress hormones such as cortisol may affect uterine circulation, which may affect implantation and placental function. Group based psychological intervention that target stress reduction through relaxation techniques lead to higher conception rates.

Numerous studies have found that women and men experience negative psychological outcome after unsuccessful treatment. Each patient will experience the stress differently based upon his or her own personality and life experiences.

IVF stress may influence the martial relationship, by reducing sexual intimacy. Couples also may find themselves stretched financially; paying for the cost of IVF treatment with a somewhat limited probability of success. Religious, social, of moral issues may also make IVF stressful, especially for those dealing with third party reproduction.

 

Must Reads: Are You Suffering From False Fertility Between Mental Health and Infertility

 

Coping Strategies

If you are about to begin your IVF Cycle, here are some tips to help get ready for IVF.

 

1. Gather information and plan ahead

Good decision making involves begin well educated and informed about your body, the IVF process and the treatment program. The more you know & understand about the process, the less stress you may feel.

 

2. Prepare for decision making 

It is important to anticipate decisions that may occur during IVF and discuss your options ahead of time. Sometimes these decisions may have moral and religious implications that you will need to consider and discuss.

 

3. Tend to your psyche and your relationships

A long struggle with infertility may have taken a lot on how you are feeling about yourself, your martial relationship and your relationship with others, causing distress and isolation.Counselling can be very helpful when you and or your partner are feeling depressed unusually anxious, emotionally stuck.  An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure, so get help early before problem arise.

 

4. Garner your support

Friends and family can be your best support. In hindsight, patients often wish that they had not told so many people at the start, as it adds to the pressure.

 

5. Identify your stresses and yours copying mechanism

Each person experience stress in different ways. So, it is helpful to identify where yours come from.Anticipating ahead where your stresses may come from will help in developing coping strategies.Exercise, stress management classes, listening to relaxation music can help in handling the stress.

 

6. Anticipate problem areas

Expect the unexpected, as changes are frequently made in the cycle because of everyone’s unique medical condition. There are possibilities for failure at every step of the cycle, from a poor response to medication to no fertilization after retrieval. No matter, what the outcome of IVF you need to recognize that you have succeeded in doing all that is within your power to have a child and can feel good about yourselves.

 

7. Emotional adjustments

Overall women were found to have more negative emotional symptoms than men, including higher distress levels, more frustration and guilt, less contentment, less happiness and lower satisfaction following a failed IVF. Although depression and anxiety become less pronounced as time passes from the date of treatment, long term issues are prominent.

 

8. Psychotherapy

Interpersonal therapy which focuses on improving relationships or resolving conflicts with others and cognitive behavioral therapy which identifies and tries to change unhealthy pattern of thought or behavior can give relief to infertile patients suffering from mild to moderate depression.

 

About the Author


Apollo Fertility is India’s one of the best IVF centres. They have a 35 year legacy of excellence and unbeatable expertise. They have one of the best state of technology and closely monitor the clinical protocols.

Dr. Sangeetha is one of the best Infertility Specialist and Gynecologist in Kundalahalli, Bangalore and has an experience of 17 years.
•    MBBS from Stanley Medical College & Hospital , Chennai in 2002
•    MD – Obstetrics & Gynecology from Stanley Medical College & Hospital, Chennai in 2011
•    She completed Fellowship in Reproductive Medicine from Rajiv Gandhi University of Health Sciences in 2016

Dr. Sangeetha is currently practicing as Infertility Specialist at Apollo Fertility, Marathalli , Bangalore.

 

This article is contributed by Apollo Fertility as part of #FertilityAwareness Initiative organized by #FertilityDost

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GreenHealthStudio

Great article. Lot of insights & very informative. Great article. Lot of insights & very informative.