The question of whether age affects one’s fertility is a common concern for a lot of individuals and couples who are considering starting a family. While numerous factors can impact fertility, age is one of the most significant.
In this article, the best fertility clinic in Toronto will explore the impact of age on fertility, including the reasons such an impact happens, the age-related decline in fertility, and the options available for individuals who are struggling with fertility issues due to age:
Why Age Affects Fertility
Age affects fertility for both men and women, although in different ways. For women, age impacts fertility due to the natural decline in the number and quality of eggs as they age. Women are born with a finite count of eggs; as they age, the number of eggs decreases, and the remaining eggs are more likely to have chromosomal abnormalities, making it more difficult to conceive. Additionally, as women age, the ovaries become less responsive to hormones necessary for ovulation, which can further impact fertility.
For men, age can also impact fertility due to a decline in the number and quality of sperm. As men age, the production of sperm slows down, and the remaining sperm may have abnormalities that can make it more difficult to conceive. Additionally, age-related health conditions such as diabetes or cardiovascular disease can impact male fertility.
The Age-Related Decline in Fertility
The age-related decline in fertility for women begins around age 35 and becomes more significant after age 40. At age 35, a woman’s chance of conceiving in any given month is about 15%, and by age 40, it drastically drops to around 5%. By age 45, the chance of conceiving naturally is less than 1%. Additionally, women over 35 are more likely to experience pregnancy complications such as preterm labor, miscarriage, and stillbirth.
For men, the age-related decline in fertility begins around age 40 and becomes more significant after age 50. While men can continue to produce sperm throughout their lives, the quality and quantity of sperm decrease with age. Men over the age of 50 are more likely to have children with genetic disorders, and there is a considerably higher risk of pregnancy complications for their partners.
Options for Individuals Struggling with Fertility Issues Due to Age
For individuals struggling with fertility issues due to age, there are several options available. For women, fertility treatments such as in vitro fertilization (IVF) can be effective in helping them conceive. IVF involves the retriev al of eggs from the ovaries and then fertilizing them with a healthy sperm in a lab. The resulting embryos are carefully transferred to the uterus. Success rates for IVF decrease with age, but it can still be an effective option for many women.
For men, fertility treatments such as intrauterine insemination (IUI) or intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) can be effective in helping them conceive. IUI involves putting the sperm directly into the uterus. In contrast, ICSI involves injecting a single sperm directly into an egg in a laboratory. Success rates for these treatments also decrease with age, but they can still be effective options for many men.
For individuals unable to conceive using their own eggs or sperm, donor eggs or sperm can be an option. Donor eggs or sperm are typically used with IVF or ICSI to achieve a successful pregnancy.
Age is a significant factor that can impact fertility for both men and women. As individuals age, their chances of conceiving naturally decrease, and there is an increased risk of pregnancy complications. However, there are still options available for individuals struggling with fertility issues due to age, including fertility treatments and the use of donor eggs or sperm. There are egg-freezing clinics in Toronto that you can visit to learn about your options. If you are concerned about your fertility due to age, it is crucial to speak with your healthcare provider to discuss your options.
First Steps Fertility Clinic is the best fertility clinic in Toronto that can help you with your concerns. Schedule an appointment with Dr. Fay Weisberg, our trusted fertility doctor and gynaecologist!