Anxiety and Infertility

Updated on March 02, 2011
K.S. asks from Pittsburgh, PA
8 answers

With the help of the internet, I diagnosed myself as having Generalized Anxiety Disorder. I am constantly worried about money, cleaning my house, food (what I am going to feed my son and husband...crazy...I know), work and health issues. I am currently trying to get pregnant again and I am seeing a fertility specialist b/c I have not had a period since my son was born two years ago. I was diagnosed with hypothalamic amenorrhea. Typically, this diagnosis is given to women who have eating me…I don’t. Basically, they don’t know why I don’t get a period but one potential answer is stress. I have done one round of injections to get pregnant. Menopur and now I am doing progesterone suppositories. Lately, I am feeling more stressed and anxious. Could this be a side effect of those drugs? Is there a safe anti-anxiety medication that I could take during pregnancy or while I am trying to get pregnant?

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answers from Chicago on

I am not sure about whether you can take things to help this, but why are you adding another child to your family when you are completely stressed out right now? Having another child will only add to your stress. Slow down a bit and try to figure out your problems before adding to them.

3 moms found this helpful


answers from New York on

If you are under a significant amount of stress and are experiencing chronic anxiety you are sending your body's hormonal system into "over-drive" which is going to make pregnancy nearly impossible. You have to respect the fact that the body is designed to maintain homeostasis (even balance) and it will "fight" anything that threatens to disrupt it (i.e. experiencing a fever to fight-off sickness). A pregnancy significantly disrupts your body's functioning and you need to be healthy and balanced to achieve a pregnancy.

Get your anxiety under control first and foremost and that doesn't happen on WebMD- see a psychiatrist b/c there are many things that are safe to take during pregnancy, but you need to prioritize here. If you have not already done so, speak with the fertility specialist about this and see what he says.

I don't think it's a coincidence that people "suddenly" get pregnant after years of trying when they finally relax and accept that "whatever will be will be"... in fact, it's usually one of the first things doctors will suggest if you are struggling to get pregnant.

Take care of the anxiety first and then worry about adding additional hormones to your body.

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answers from Philadelphia on

I can tell you, having had 2 children via IVF, that fertility treatments themselves are very stressful. I can't say how much of it is due to the hormones, but I don't think it matters -- the whole process of constantly monitoring your body's hormones and egg production, giving yourself injections, and all the hope pinned on each cycle is certainly stressful enough. So, first, acknowledge that what you're going through with the fertility treatment alone is stressful and you need to take extra care of yourself during this time. You need to deliberately and prescriptively make time to do that -- whatever works for you. You may have limitations on physical activity if you are stimulating egg production, but there are gentle activities you can do like walking and yoga in that case.

As a therapist, I also think it would be helpful to get a clinician to address your self-diagnosis of generalized anxiety disorder -- to either verify or more accurately diagnose what you actually have, and then to work with you to learn what your symptoms are, how and when they manifest, and what is the best course of action to deal with them. It's possible your anxiety is situational, caused by the infertility issues, and thus medication is really not warranted. But a lot depends on how severe your symptoms are and how related they are to the infertility.

So I really think, if you are seriously considering medication, that your first stop should be to see a therapist. I would ask around your friends or look online for reviews to find one that would be a good match for you. Your fertility specialist might even have one that works with their patients, and may also be offering support groups you can check out as well (I know my office did).

Good luck, I hope everything works out for you.


answers from Allentown on

Hi, K.:

Honey chile, is there some way that you can go to a Narrative Therapist to get to your underlying problem with stress?

Then you can work on your problem with infertility.

Do you want to bring a child into the world and add to your problem with stress?

Just want to know.
I care about you.



answers from Scranton on

I have a niece that has an issue with anxiety as well. She just gave birth a month ago. But she did take anti anxiety meds and had several miscarriages. that she felt were meds realated. So she felt is was necessary to get off the meds. She did have a very healthy pregnancy this last time with no issues.
Have you ever been checked for Polycystic ovarian syndrome? A simple ultrasound can help to identify this. Also have your thyroid checked. These are typically the two most common forms of infertility.



answers from Pittsburgh on

Please find a psychiatrist and therapist. Your PCP should be able to help you. If not, contact WPIC in Pittsburgh directly. There may be safe medications that can help you. If not, then there is always talk therapy, behavioral therapy, etc. Medication is not the only option. But you need to get the appointment and see a specialist for a medical diagnosis so that you can learn about the options that will work best for you. And they can continue to work with you through your pregnancy when anxiety can increase even more.

Please take care of yourself first - it is the best way to be a good mom to your son and your future baby.



answers from Chicago on

This would definitely be a question to ask your primary care physician or a psychiatrist. You feel as if you have anxiety issues, you're taking other medications to try to get pregnant, and you may eventually become pregnant which will set off another cascade of hormones in your brain and body. You really need someone who has significant experience and training in the area of psychiatry, not WebMD.



answers from Philadelphia on

I would tell you to go workout. I would tell you to try not to take meds while trying to get pregnant. Go workout it is good for you and it acts like a mild anti-depressant and helps release the endorphins in your brain. It will help your mind and body relax. You want your mind and body in the best shape possible if you are trying to get pregnant.

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