Is My Age Impacting My Fertility?
It’s a trend that is likely here to stay – couples are waiting until later to start families. Terms like advanced maternal age can be frightening, but in this video message, Dr. Marc Sklar offers perspective, nuggets of advice, and above all, hope. If you’d rather read than watch, scroll down to the transcript below.
Transcript | Dr. Marc Sklar | How to Improve Fertility Over 35
This video is sponsored by Fairhaven Health. While I have a partnership with Fairhaven Health and recommend their products, the information and opinions in this video are 100% my own.
If you’re 35 and older and you’ve been told that you are an advanced maternal age and you’ve been told that your chances to conceive are much lower than they should be, then I want you to keep watching because I don’t believe it’s true and I don’t think you do either. So stay tuned for more information on how to improve your fertility if you’re over 35. If you believe that being 35 or older is a fantastic age to get pregnant and be a mom, then I want you to hit the “Like” button to show all the women who are over 35 and watching this video that you believe in them and their fertility as well. Hi, I’m Dr. Marc Sklar, the fertility expert and welcome to Fertility TV. I work with couples from all over the world, helping them get pregnant naturally. If you’re trying to get pregnant then subscribe and hit the bell so that I can help you too. So I’m curious, I want to know how old you are. I want to know how old everybody watching this video is.
So comment below with your age so that I can learn how old you are and how important this video is for you. So if you’re watching this video, I assume that you’ve been told that because you’re a 35 or older, that your chances of conceiving and having a healthy baby have decreased. And some might even say that they’ve considerably decreased. I often relate fertility and aging to a light switch. I talk to patients all the time and they come in and say, “Well, the doctor that because my birthday is approaching in a couple of months, or whatever it is, or even that month, that we need to do some things now. We have to take action now because, “You’re becoming 35, or 38, or 40, or whatever that number is and your fertility is going to dramatically change.” And I often chuckle and then I say to them, “Is your body a light switch?” And they look at me with this puzzle. And I say, “It’s exactly it because your body is not a light switch. It’s not this on/off switch that as soon as you hit that birthday, ‘Oh my birthday’s on March 19th. And all of a sudden click, my health has just decreased dramatically. It’s much worse. My fertility has gone down dramatically just because I’ve ticked another day on the calendar.’”
It’s not true, it just doesn’t work that way. Okay? And if your fertility does work that way and can be equated to a light switch, then I would say it’s more like a dimmer switch than a regular light switch. And what that means is, because when you have these dimmer switches, you can actually push that little switch up to make it brighter in the room or you can push it down to make it darker in the room. So if we think of our fertility like that, maybe it is like that, right? Maybe it is more like a dimmer switch. And as we do things that are negative for us, that switch starts to go down and become darker. And as we do things that are better and more rejuvenating for ourselves, then that switch starts to push on up and become brighter, right?
So that doesn’t mean that when you hit your birthday and whatever age you switch into, it doesn’t mean that things are going to dramatically change. It still means that you have control over how your fertility, your health and your body are going to respond to that. And we can make it better or we can make it worse. Does that mean that there’s not effort to be put into it? No, by all means there is. So as we age, I do think what that means is we have to put in more effort and more time and more energy to make the necessary changes to push that dimmer switch up versus when we were younger, it was probably a little easier to push that up than it is now. I also want to let you guys know that you can’t see it, but I’ll show you right now. I’ve got my computer right here and I’ve got my notes in front of me.
So from time to time I’m going to look down and reference my notes because I want to stay on point and make sure that I am hitting all the points that I want to cover, and that I’m giving you all the information that you need to improve your fertility and have the knowledge to make educated and informed decisions about your fertility and your health and how to move forward. On that note, I’m going to look down and check out my notes. What does the research actually say about your fertility and age? Well, there was a research study done with 770 women in Europe that showed if you had sex two times a week, regularly for 12 months, that your chances of becoming pregnant were 82% between the ages of 35 and 39. Wait, say that again … that showed if you had sex two times a week regularly for 12 months, that your chances of becoming pregnant were 82% between the ages of 35 and 39.
Because I’m sure all of you are saying, “What? My doctor told me that I’m 35 and I’m considered geriatric because I’m over 35 now and my chances have dramatically gone down.” But this research study done in Europe with 770 women … That’s right. I’m just going to repeat it so you can hear it, who had sex two times a week. I will say that most of my fertility patients are not having regular intercourse outside of their fertile window. And even then, they’re maybe not even having a lot of intercourse. So I want to say that’s a big piece of this. So you’re having sex two times a week over a 12 month period that your chance of becoming pregnant, even between the ages of 35 and 90 are 82%. So, that’s right. You all might be say to me, “Marc sex twice a week? That’s crazy.” Look, there is a whole other research study, and I’m not even saying here, that definitely shows that the more regular you can have intercourse, whether it’s in your fertile window or not, the more likely you are to get pregnant.
And this research study shows that as well, even if you’re over 35 okay. So there was another study out of Boston University. They looked at 3,000 Danish women within one year of trying to conceive between the ages of 35 and 40 … one year more than the other study. They had a 78% chance of conception. And a third study from UNC showed that white females who were not overweight had an 80% chance within six months between the ages of 38 and 39. So what does all this show us? It shows us that you’re still very fertile over 35 and well into your late 30s, but we have to do something about it. Okay? We can’t just sit there and expect to get pregnant if we only tried during our fertile window. What the research does actually show that the biggest change in success rate due to age actually changes or happens after the age of 40. So what we do know is that complications do increase with age, but even those are not super high. So there are chromosomal issues.
We all hear that we can have chromosomally abnormal babies as we age, and the chances of that dramatically increases as we age. Well, let’s look at the numbers, right? The research shows at 35, you have a 1% chance of having a chromosomally abnormal baby. 1% chance. At 40 that jumps up to 2%. So yes, is there an increase when we age that we can have some abnormality with the fetus? Absolutely. But it’s not a huge increase. 35, 1%. 40, 2%. And 45, that’s where it really goes up, 13%. But I have patients who say to me, “Well, if I am over 40, I have a 50% chance or 60% chance of having abnormal children.” It’s not necessarily the case, and the research here that I just showed you supports that. How about down syndrome? We do know that’s the biggest concern for most women, is down syndrome and as we age what that could yield. So again, let’s look at the research. When you’re 20, you have a 1 in 500 chance of having a baby with down syndrome. 20. At 30, that goes to 1 in 400. I mean, higher, but not dramatic.
And then at 40 is where the big change happens, it’s one in 65 okay. So that does make a big difference. But I just got off a call with a patient who was, she’s in her … She’s about to turn 42. Yes, 42 and she’s very concerned about having abnormal children and not having healthy fetuses to that will develop because that’s what she keeps hearing and that’s what the doctors keep telling her. But the research doesn’t necessarily show that. Yes, it does increase, but it’s not by these crazy percentages that we were told. How about high blood pressure? You have a 2% chance of having an increase in high blood pressure at the age of 30, and 4% at the age of 40. So these numbers are not dramatic. What we do know is that age is just a number and it’s just one variable in the bigger picture. One variable of a lot of different other things that influence your overall fertility and your fertile health to be able to conceive. So what are those other variables? Well, one is previous medical history.
If you’ve had a complicated previous medical history, that does impact your overall health and your fertility today. Lifestyle. Lifestyle is probably one of the bigger things that I talk about with patients. Are you exercising? When you come home, do you just sit on the couch and watch TV? Are you doing something productive with your life? These lifestyle factors are big impacts. And some people will say that diet is a piece of lifestyle. It is, I have parceled it out as a separate item, which I’ll get into. Number three is general health. How about your general health? “What does general health have to do with it? Well, it’s not my fertility, it’s not my reproductive organs. So what does it matter?” Well, all of our organs, all of our systems, our whole body is connected and one system influences the other. And so our general health, whether digestive health, immune function, whatever it might be, will impact and influence some of our other organs and our other systems and reproductive system. And your endocrine system is no different. So what is your overall health telling you?
And then diet, like I mentioned before, diet is essential and it’s one of the foundational pieces that absolutely needs to be put in place that everything else builds upon to make sure that we are doing the right things. I often joke to patients, there’s nothing more that you do in life on a daily basis than eat, drink and sleep. So we have to eat the right things, we have to drink the right things, and we have to get enough quality and quantity of sleep. And so those are lifestyle factors that absolutely do play a role in your fertility and reproductive health. There are a few other factors that do influence your egg quality and your ability to conceive, and birth control pill is actually one of those factors. So in longterm use of birth control can cause nutrient deficiencies and delay your ability to conceive. I often, on one side, I often hear from patients who say, “Well, my doctor said that for me to conceive, I’ve got to go on birth control.”
There is a time and a place for that to happen, that’s typically as you’re prepping for an IVF cycle or something like that. But if you have PCOS and you’ve been told you need to go on birth control pills so that you can get pregnant and regulate your hormones, that doesn’t typically work that I see and it actually usually makes things worse in that sense. Other side effects of the birth control can be blood clots, depression, changes in gut health and vaginal health. That’s right, it can change the microbiome in your gut and a vagina and potentially autoimmune issues. So these are things that we need to take into account and consider when we’re making the choice to go on birth control, but they’re not often discussed with us because we’re often told that this is what we need, and who second guesses the person on the other side of the room in the white quote … in the white coat? Excuse me. Nobody. Two other big factors which I alluded to one of them previously and I often discuss these with patients, is stress and sleep.
Managing our stress and managing the way we handle and deal with stress is really important and getting consistent quality sleep are some of the bigger factors that I do think influence pregnancy success. And I have a patient and funny enough … So for her, I had to do this twice. Okay. And this sounds funny, but I’m just going to tell you the last story for her. She had PCOS, she came in the first time and she had not been trying … Excuse me, she hadn’t been having a menstrual cycle for quite some time. And when she came in she wasn’t sleeping properly, and we were able to regulate that, get that working. Within a very short period of time, she got her period back after years of not having it, and she got pregnant shortly thereafter and had a beautiful baby.
Well, she came back to me for baby number two and what she started to do, which I did not realize, and I didn’t ask the right questions, but we figured it out, was that she was waking up at about 5:00 AM to go to the gym so she can be back by 6:00. Because her daughter woke up at 6:15, and she wants to be there when she woke up and have the rest of the day with her. But she wasn’t getting enough sleep. She was going to sleep I think around midnight or something like that. So she’s getting five hours of sleep, which is a no no in my book, and she wasn’t getting enough. Lo and behold, I say to her, “Okay, this is what you can do. You can do that schedule twice a week, but the rest of the time you’ve got to sleep in. And not only that, you have to go to sleep earlier on every night and get more sleep.” The next cycle … That’s right, the next cycle, she conceived and got pregnant, held the baby full term and had another healthy baby.
So it shows you how important sleep is. And that’s just one example. I do that often or I hear that often from patients when I start to adjust their sleeping patterns that their cycles regulate or they get pregnant. And so it’s a very important piece of what you need to do. One thing we do know for certain is that time can work for us … For us, excuse me, or against us. And if we want it to work for us, then we have to start to use it to our advantage to be proactive and start preparing our body for conception with the time that we have instead of just letting it go by and not using it proactively. And working on egg quality is one of the ways we do that because we need time to work on egg quality and they need a certain amount of nutrients to start to change the quality of the eggs and start to produce better eggs. It also needs time. So one of my secret weapons for preconception support is this beautiful product called FH Pro for Women.
I’m just going to do this so that you can see it clearly. How about that? Boom. Here it is. That’s right. FH Pro for Women, and it’s designed to optimize egg quality, ovarian function, hormone balance, and overall female reproductive health. It has some nutrients in there that have a protective function I should say on the eggs from oxidative stress because it’s got some key nutrients. I’m not going to show you the whole list. You can look it up, but it’s a big list of nutrients right there. And one of the other things that it has in there, and often what I think of it for is that it has some key nutrients in there to help regulate blood sugar and insulin metabolism. It’s definitely a key guide and can replace your prenatal vitamin as well as replace a bunch of your other nutrients because it has most of what you need in here.
So instead of taking a bunch of different bottles, I often find myself replacing many patients supplement regimen with this as a key piece of that and then just adding on in some missing specific vitamins that they need for their specific case into this mix. And so one of the reasons I like it … and I’ll just read from it, it’s got Myo-Inositol and D-Chiro Inositol. It has the proper form and amount of folate. It has a great amount of vitamin D3, it also has COQ10, a bunch of antioxidants. Really all around a go-to for my patients, and something that I often find that I am recommending more and more these days.
If you want to find out if this was the right thing for you or you want to learn more about FH Pro for Women, then I want you to go ahead and click below or go below to the comments and click on the link there and you can find all the information you need to get yourself one of these and hopefully replace a bunch of your other supplements so you’re not taking a whole slew of things. The other thing with a FH Pro is that it is manufactured in a GMP certified facility, which is important because we often don’t know where all of our other supplements come from, where they’re made, and how they’re made. And so we can trust in this product because it does come from a good facility, reputable company, and has all the key nutrients as well. So if you’re a 35 or older and wanting to get pregnant and grow your family, the one thing you should take away from this video is that you can.
And all the people who tell you that you’re old, and that you don’t have good quality eggs, and that you don’t have a chance of getting pregnant, they’re wrong. The first thing I want you to know is that I want you to believe in yourself and your ability to get pregnant and be fertile, and I want you to know that you can do it. And that actually the research does show that you can have healthy children over 35 and well into your late 30s and early 40s. So I want you to retain that hope, I want you to fight on to get pregnant. And more importantly, I want you to start to incorporate some of the tools, the suggestions or the tips that I mentioned in this video to help you get pregnant if you’re 35 or older, or whatever age you are. Okay? You can get pregnant, you are fertile and you will have a child.
If you liked this video, then give me a thumbs up and comment below letting me know which one of the tips that I mentioned you’re going to start putting into practice today. There are many things that you can do to improve your fertility. So to make it easier for you, I put together this free training. You can watch it easily from your home and it’s designed for all of you who are 35 and older. It’s called Fertility Anti-aging, The Bulletproof Method to Get Pregnant Over 35. If you’re serious about getting pregnant now, then you have to take action and watch this training. There is time for you to improve your fertility, but your eggs are not getting any younger. Actually, they can if you watch my video so that we can put on that super anti-aging treatment that I like to do for my patients to improve their fertility and do fertility anti-aging treatment.
So check out the link below to watch it. And I’m going to invite you to apply to become a patient of mine and see if I can help you to improve your fertility, whatever age you are. Thanks for watching Fertility TV. I’m going to leave some videos right here that can also help you get pregnant. And until next time, stay fertile.