How can Thyroid Health affect female’s fertility potential?

If you have failed to conceive pregnancy after serious efforts and thinking of opting IVF treatment to have a baby; check if your thyroid gland is functioning properly.

Most couples are unaware that a proper functioning of thyroid gland is important for having a good fertility potential. Unfortunately, a comprehensive thyroid test is not a part of fertility treatments.

An underactive or overactive thyroid gland can become a hurdle in your parenthood journey. There are several reasons for infertility. Note that couples diagnosed with no specific reproductive issues are having unexplained infertility.

The prevalence of thyroid dysfunction is higher in general population and remains undiagnosed. A large number of patients with fertility issues are having suboptimal thyroid function. There is an evident increase in the effects of thyroid functioning in both male infertility and female infertility. The good news is that the symptoms of subclinical through clinics can be cured through a thyroid gland evaluation test.

You should get a thyroid test done as soon as possible if you are thinking of having a baby, especially if you have:

  • Genetic history of thyroid problems
  • Previous miscarriages
  • Irregular menstrual cycles
  • Prolonged conception failure

What is the function of the thyroid gland?

The thyroid gland is present at the front of the throat, right below the voice box and just above the collar bones. The thyroid hormone regulates the metabolic levels, calcium levels, oxygen utilization in your body and promotes weight balancing.

The hormones involves with the thyroid function include Thyroid Releasing Hormone (TRH) in the hypothalamus promotes secretion of Thyroid Stimulating Hormone (TSH) causing the thyroid gland to produce Thyroxine (T4) & Triiodothyronine (T3). T4 turns to T3 (the active form) in the liver.

What are the factors responsible for your thyroid health?

  • Exposure to environmental toxins – chemicals, pesticides etc
  • Genetic susceptibility
  • High stress levels
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Infections
  • Estrogen dominance and high prolactin levels

How does Thyroid functioning impact your Fertility?

Poor thyroid functioning creates an imbalance in your body’s natural balance of reproductive hormones. The menstrual cycle is more complex than you can think of. It provides a chance to have egg fertilization each month. If your thyroid gland is dysfunctional, it may cause absence of menstruation or irregular menstrual cycles.

Anovulatory cycles

Anovulatory cycles means absence of ovulation. A Luteinizing Hormone (LH) stimulates your ovaries to release eggs. If the thyroid hormone levels are not right then it does not support LH. If there is no releasing of eggs, pregnancy becomes impossible.

Luteal Phase Issues

It takes around 15 days to create a fertilized egg. If the following menstrual cycle is for shorter period due to bad LH response and continued low progesterone production, the fertilized egg fails to attach to the uterus lining perfectly and will release itself at the time of menstruation. This causes an early miscarriage usually mistaken as regular periods.

Low Body Temperature

Low thyroid function can result in lower basal body temperatures. The rapid splitting of cells requires an exact temperature range for division to occur. If you have low basal body temperature, the embryos may not develop, increasing miscarriage chances.

High Prolactin Levels

Increased TRH and thyroxine levels may lead to rise in prolactin and TSH having a negative impact on your fertility.

Reduced libido levels

Sex drive is greatly influenced by a series of physical and emotional factors. Hormones affect your sexual desires in many ways. When hormone imbalances are combined with the fatigue and mood swings due to a thyroid disorder can dampen your libido.

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