October-is-Pregnancy-Infant-Loss-Awareness-monthIn October we acknowledge the women and couples who suffered loss and bereavement of those who have had a miscarriage or infant death, including stillbirth, Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS), or any death of a newborn. The research shows that approximately 25 percent of pregnancies end in miscarriage. Miscarriage can cause a flood of emotions and feelings of pain and loss. Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day was declared in 1988 when President Ronald Reagan declared the month of October as Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month to support women and families who have suffered such an insurmountable loss.

Many people are unaware about Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day. However, we bet everyone knows October is Breast Cancer Awareness month. Why is it that more people don’t know or talk about pregnancy and infant loss? There is a stigma associated with this topic and people just don’t want to talk about something so sad and isolating. It is also difficult to find resources or support groups for those who suffer this unfortunate loss. Having a day to recognize women who have encountered such a loss helps build a community of those who have gone through the loss and can provide support for reaching out.

For anyone that has had a pregnancy or infant loss, we are sending you strength and encourage you to be open and share your story with others to get the message out there so people don’t suffer in silence any longer. You can wear a pink and blue ribbon to represent Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day, light a candle, or provide support and empathy to someone you know suffered a loss.

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Prenatal Yoga Benefits

by Admin on October 5, 2018

Prenatal YogaPregnant women can benefit from prenatal yoga to help with stretching, while also releasing pains related to the pregnancy. By learning the fundamentals of prenatal yoga, you can have a more pleasant experience and be more in tune with your body while pregnant. This is a great way to connect with your baby and learn about your body.

Prenatal yoga focuses on the general yoga principles and poses. No yoga experience needed, which is great because this can help prepare you for birth by practicing deep breathing techniques. Prenatal yoga will help loosen back pain, help with sciatica, allow for flexibility, strengthen your lower body to support your upper body, and keep you balanced as your core center shifts

Prenatal yoga can greatly benefit you during your pregnancy. It is important to discuss taking prenatal yoga with your physician. Please be aware that prenatal yoga is not advised if you are in your first trimester, rather it is recommended and more impactful in the second and third trimesters. Also, if you have any pain, high blood pressure, rapid heartbeat, dizziness or feel faint, vaginal bleeding, contractions, chest pain or other symptoms that do not seem typical, please consult your physician before practicing prenatal yoga.

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Reciprocal IVF for Lesbian Couples

by Admin on September 20, 2018

We work with many same-sex couples who have decided they want to have a baby. There are a variety of treatment options to assist with conception, one of which is reciprocal in vitro fertilization. With reciprocal IVF, both female partners are given the opportunity to mutually be a part of conceiving their child.  This allows lesbian couples to both to undergo treatment at the same time so that they are equally bonded to their child.

One partner is the egg donor and supplies the eggs for IVF, while the other is the gestational carrier who will give birth to the baby. The female that will donate her eggs will go through a procedure to extract the eggs from her ovaries so that they can be fertilized by the sperm.  The other female partner will be prepped for the embryos to be transferred to her uterus so she can carry the baby to term. Another option is to freeze the embryos that are created and transfer them to the female after hormone treatment is complete. In general, the process mirrors a typical IVF cycle and is similar in cost for a cycle of IVF, fertility medications, etc.  Costs for reciprocal IVF are estimated to range from $16,000 to $30,000 depending on your specific situation. You should also consider any legal costs that may be associated depending on the state you live in.

Same-sex couples who may want a second child can reverse the roles for the next process so that each has a biological relationship with one child while also getting to experience giving birth. We are here to help guide you with any answers to your questions about treatment options for same-sex couples. If you’re ready to start a family, our fertility experts are here.

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Male Infertility Uncovered

by Admin on September 6, 2018

A man’s infertility is often overlooked as being an issue when it comes to trying to get pregnant.  When couples have problems trying to conceive, up to half of the time, it could be due to male infertility. There is more research being conducted to identify critical issues causing a man to be infertile. Scientists are trying to find new technology to increase how sperm cells swim by supercharging the cells. The belief is that treatment can help improve the mobility of sperm, then this can increase the chance to reach a woman’s egg to fertilize it. This type of treatment or medication could be the answer for couples to conceive naturally and avoid expensive treatments like in vitro fertilization (IVF).

Is there a Cure?

As science and technology are becoming more cutting edge, scientists are trying to develop treatments and procedures that are less invasive for the female and will cost less money overall. In general, currently, there is not much that men can do when it comes to infertility treatment when their sperm quality is poor.  Approximately one in six couples have difficulty conceiving. There are medications to treat hormone imbalances and erectile dysfunction. At times, surgery can repair blockages that transport sperm. However, there is nothing clinically proven to cure male infertility, yet scientists are not giving up on the search to find a treatment.

Approximately one in six couples have difficulty conceiving. If you are interested in finding out more about services to treat infertility, contact our offices to speak to one of our experts about treatments and services that may be a good fit for you.

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Coping With Summer Heat While Pregnant

by Admin on August 23, 2018

Pregnancy during the summer is hard, we feel you. It can be brutal dealing with the heat and humidity. We want to provide some tips to make your summer pregnancy more tolerable.

First and foremost, it is important to stay hydrated. In the summer months, you should be drinking a daily minimum of 8 cups of water. Fluids, especially water, provides essential nutrition for the baby and helps to remove waste from your body. You may also find that when you drink enough water and are sufficiently hydrated, your body will cool off quicker and also eliminate water retention so you will be less puffy and constipated.

Take advantage of the summer months and go to the beach or pool to cool off. Swimming and/or water aerobics can provide relief from the heat as well as great exercise which helps to relieve pressure on your joints. Consult your medical provider before starting any new exercise regimen. You can also take a cool, relaxing bath at home and hang out in the tub for a while. The bath will help cool you down and give your body a break.

Another tip is to wear loose fit clothing, such as a flowing maxi-dress or maternity shorts, to help keep you cool. Clothing that is too tight can make you feel uncomfortable by restricting your breathing.

Make sure to take it easy, rest and keep your feet up during these hot months.  The heat can add to swelling in the legs and feet which can be uncomfortable. Stay indoors with a fan or air conditioning and use a cold towel over your legs to reduce swelling.

Enjoy your pregnancy and stay cool!

Happy pregnant woman drinking water after yoga training on white background. 

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C-Section Journey

by Admin on August 7, 2018

There are some people who think that a C-section is an easier method to deliver a baby compared to traditional, vaginal delivery.  People may assume this because you can choose your C-section date making it seem like you can plan the birth of the baby. This also may seem like a better way to deliver so that you can avoid any surprises.

On the contrary, there are many reasons a C-section is medically necessary.  Many women actually try their best to avoid having a C-section. There are certain conditions, one of which is preeclampsia, where the blood pressure spikes which can lead to an emergency situation during labor. A medically necessary C-section can actually save the woman’s life, as well as the baby’s life.

C-sections are not an easy way out of labor and pain. There are risks with a C-section since it is considered to be a major surgery. Women can be prone to infection or complications such as hemorrhaging. Not only that, there can be risks to the unborn baby during a C-section.  In addition, there is a longer and more challenging period for a woman to heal after the procedure than for a normal delivery. It can be difficult to move, lift the baby out of the bassinet, bathe the baby or breastfeed. You should rely on others to help until the pain subsides.

There is nothing simple about the process of a C-section. Many women may feel upset that they did not have a natural birth. It is hard to face the fact that you may not have a choice as to how to deliver your baby. Many times, in a medical emergency during labor, the right thing is to have a C-section to maintain safety, as that is everyone’s concern.

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Infertile and Pregnant for the Second Time

by Admin on August 7, 2018

Going through years of not conceiving successfully, even with medically-assisted reproduction and new interventions, can be detrimental to your state of mind. This can be a silent and painful struggle that can initiate anxiety or for some, shame.

One couple went through three years of attempting to conceive with in-vitro fertilization, medications, procedures, you name it. They did have a successful pregnancy, but it led to a miscarriage. They repeated the cycle with great hopes yet it still resulted in a loss.  After accepting that the situation, they used an egg donor and had their first successful pregnancy.  For this couple, becoming pregnant and having a successful birth did not erase their identity of infertility. In their attempt to have a second child, they did conceive naturally and they are cautiously optimistic that their path will lead to a growing family. It is hard for them to balance the mixed emotions of wanting to celebrate being pregnant yet also having fears of past loss.

After having your first baby, you may think to get pregnant a second time will happen easily. Every pregnancy comes with risks and without guarantees. So pregnancy after infertility is another chapter of dreams, hopes, and prayers to having a

full-term pregnancy.

If this circumstance resonates with you and you want to have a second child, please reach out to our experts with any questions you may have.

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LGBTQ Parenting

by Admin on August 3, 2018

Children thrive in stable environments that provide security, love, and consistency. What makes the most impact for nurturing and raising healthy children is surrounding them with caring family, friends and loved ones. It does not matter whether you are LGBTQ, heterosexual, single, or in a relationship; the research shows children thrive when there are positive role models throughout their upbringing.
The American Academy of Pediatrics supports LGBTQ parents who raise children through surrogacy, as well as adoption and foster care. The reason is, LGBTQ parents have to plan to raise a family by nontraditional methods such as in-vitro fertilization, surrogacy or sperm donors. This leads to a different dynamic of parenting since they can be more motivated and committed because they take the extra steps to have a family in the first place. They choose to be parents and this often takes a lot of time, effort and money.
When LGBTQ individuals or same-sex couples go through adoption measures, they tend to adopt children over the age of three, which is a difficult age, as well as special needs children. Adopted children with at least one gay parent report that they grew up in an environment that made them more tolerant and accepting of everyone, regardless of sexual status or race. Children of LGBTQ and same-sex couples are successful in school, get good grades and are confident.
Every child is different, so bringing them up in a family that supports and accepts them is an important factor that may be present in households with a gay or lesbian parent.
If you are single or in a relationship and are interested in finding out more about starting a family, reach out to our professionals. We are here to answer your questions and help guide you through the process.

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Explaining the story of your child’s conception can be a very difficult subject for many parents who have children born through surrogacy. It is absolutely normal to have feelings of discomfort or uneasiness about how, or if, to approach the story of your child’s creation. You may be having fears of how your child will react, feelings of distance from your child or instances of them acting out after disclosing the information. You may wonder if they will consider you their “real” parent if they know the truth.  Again, these are valid concerns that you may have, but it will be okay.

Research has shown that waiting to tell your child the origins of their birth until later in life will cause them to act out compared to children who are told their unique birth story earlier on. There is no right or wrong way to tell the story, it just should feel comfortable to you as you tell it.

Some tips we recommend when talking to your children is to keep it simple. Don’t try to make it overcomplicated or overthink the situation. Kids appreciate the simple, straight-to-the-point information. Another tip is not to offer more information than is necessary. Of course, we recommend that you tell the truth, answer all their questions and avoid lying or omitting information. What we are saying is to spare them of all the specific details about surrogacy or any adult topic. This is where the trouble usually starts. If a parent gets nervous and starts spewing information, things start going awry. Even if you have a lot to say, keep it to the bare minimum, yet answer their questions in the most truthful way possible by keeping it short and sweet. As they get older, you can provide more details as their age becomes more appropriate.

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More about Medication and Fertility

by Admin on July 13, 2018

As our medical capabilities get more advanced, there are more medications to treat ailments, infections, and diseases. However, as some medications can be helpful for treatment, they can also have negative side effects and implications on fertility.

Many blood pressure medications can cause a decrease in libido, as well as erectile dysfunction. Medications to treat blood pressure, known as calcium channel blockers, can inhibit the s

perm from fertilizing the egg.  In addition, there are blood pressure medications that can significantly reduce the volume and motility of semen produced as well as decrease sperm concentration.

Pain medications, such as opioids, are known to cause erectile dysfunction, as well as issues with ejaculation. These medications work by lowering the testosterone levels, which causes the production of sperm to decrease.

If you are prescribed antibiotics, be aware that these may affect sperm production. The bigger concern is the need for antibiotics to treat a fever related to an infection or illness. The fever can overheat the sperm in the testes which can affect sperm count for a few months.

The use of medication does not necessarily mean that you will not be able to conceive and become parents. We do recommend that you and your partner consult your medical practitioner to discuss all the medications both of you take and how these could affect your ability to have a child.  There are many medications that have less of an impact on fertility in case a certain drug affects sperm production, mobility, quantity or quality.

Feel free to consult our professionals to discuss the options to have a child. We are here to answer any of your questions about fertility issues, surrogacy, and related topics.

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