In a series of stories exploring fertility, Mamamia chats to women, couples and experts about what it means to struggle to conceive.
Here, we get the answers to your nine most commonly asked IVF questions from IVF Australia fertility specialist, Dr Andrew Hedges.
We find out when, if and how to start the IVF process, and what your assisted fertility journey might look like.
Watch the trailer for Mamamia’s new podcast, Get Me Pregnant, where hosts Rachel Corbett and Leigh Campbell talk all things pregnancy and fertility. Post continues below.
1. We are ready to have a baby! How long do we keep trying to get pregnant naturally?
The typical answer is for couples to try to conceive naturally for 12 months before seeking help. But as Dr Hedges explains, generic advice should be carefully considered.
“Firstly, your age is key. If you are over 35 and want more than one child, I would advise against trying for a full 12 months. Natural fertility begins to decline more quickly after 35 so you don’t always want to wait to see a doctor,” Dr Hedges says.
“Secondly, don’t wait to seek help if you have a pre-existing medical condition. This might include already diagnosed conditions such as endometriosis, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) or irregular periods and general ovulation issues. For the man, this may mean abnormal sperm production.”