How Depression and Infertility are linked?

joni joni 10 June 2022 Follow
How Depression and Infertility are linked?


Infertility and depression are two different sides of the same coin. According to research, infertility can lead to depression. There are some signs that depression may impair fertility.

How Depression and Infertility are linked?

Fertility is not affected by depression alone. According to the Study, however, pregnancy rates fall slightly when one of the sperm-giving partners is suffering from depression. It is believed that depression affects physical intimacy, which may explain the decline. Further, there is evidence that antidepressant drugs can impair pregnancy outcomes.

Anxiety caused by infertility concerns can lead to depression

Family and friends, society overall, or your own perceptions and needs can put stress on your mental health if you feel pressured to become pregnant.

Researchers have found that infertility affects the privacy of several people. Consequently, some people may begin to question their worth or think their bodies do not function well. These feelings can lead to a feeling of failure. Infertility can be an intensely isolating experience due to the stigma associated with it.

It can also be stressful to undergo treatments. It is physically and financially taxing, time-consuming, and stressful to take part in an ART. Research has shown that this additional stress can cause depression.


Depression may occur as a side effect of prescription drugs

The hormones in your treatment could be linked to depression if you developed it after starting ART or IVF.

Multiple studies of infertile people found that those who received ovarian stimulation experienced more symptoms of depression than those who did not receive ovarian stimulation.

An NIH study claims that some prescription infertility drugs can cause depression symptoms. These are some examples:

  • clomiphene 

  • leuprolide 

  • gonadotropins

You may experience worsening side effects as your treatment progresses. Treatment that does not result in pregnancy is more likely to worsen depression symptoms.


Prescription drugs may cause depression

If you developed depression after starting ART or IVF, hormones in your treatment may have been to blame.

According to multiple studies of infertile people, those who received ovarian stimulation showed more signs of depression than those who did not.


How Depression and Infertility are linked?

NIH researchers claim some prescription infertility drugs can cause depression symptoms. Examples include:

  • clomiphene 

  • leuprolide 

  • gonadotropins

As your treatment progresses, you could experience worsening side effects. A treatment that doesn't result in pregnancy is more likely to worsen depression symptoms.

Sleep problems may be affecting you

if you suffer from fertility problems, sleep problems, or depression.

Women who detect failures in subsequent Pregnancy tests counter stress and sleep disturbance. It is reported that many people who are experiencing infertility struggle to get a good night's sleep.

Lack of sleep and sleep disturbances can also affect fertility.
Sleep-deprived individuals, for example, may have a more difficult time conceiving and are more likely to lose a pregnancy prematurely by youtube
In many cases, depression symptoms emerge or are affected by sleep deprivation, such as:
  • fatigue
  • excessive sleepiness during the day
  • cramps
  • mood swings
  • difficulty concentrating

Depression is associated with conditions related to infertility

Specific medical conditions can make it more difficult to get pregnant, according to the Source. A miscarriage or infertility test failure can also cause depression. 

Study after study has shown that it's not always the condition itself that causes fertility problems, but rather the medications used to treat it. Low fertility is associated with depression as well as the following conditions:

  • polycystic ovary syndrome

  • celiac disease endometriosis

  • thyroid problems

  • Lyme disease erythematosus (SLE)

  • arthritis rheumatoid

  • blood pressure is too high


Do you know the signs and symptoms of depression?

Everyone experiences depression differently.

How Depression and Infertility are linked?


Symptoms include:

Gain or loss of weight

Depressed individuals may experience unexpected weight gain or loss due to changes in their diet.

Various health issues, including heart disease and diabetes, have been linked to extreme weight gain, according to medical experts. A lack of energy, poor health, and impaired cognitive function are all symptoms of being underweight.

Angiogenic inflammation

According to a reliable source, anxiety and depression are linked to inflammation and may impact the immune system. Chronic inflammation may also contribute to depression. Depression is associated with inflammatory and immune-deficiency disorders, such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), type 2 diabetes, and joint problems. We do not know, however, whether depression causes inflammation or whether chronic inflammation makes someone more prone to anxiety. A greater understanding of how these two factors interact is needed.


Gastrointestinal issues

Mentally ill people frequently report stomach or digestion issues, such as diarrhea, vomiting, dizziness, or stomach pain. IBS may also be associated with depression.

Source: This might be due to depression suppressing activity in the brainstem, pituitary gland, and adrenal glands during times of stress.

How does depression get treated?

There is a strong correlation between depression and fertility problems, but you can still take steps to alleviate the symptoms. Here are some common treatments for depression that you should consider if you're experiencing fertility problems.


Making the decision whether to take antidepressants throughout fertility treatment is challenging. Various antidepressants work differently, so the consequences may vary from one drug to another. Even so, you should discuss the risks and benefits with a medical professional.

There is ongoing research on antidepressant safety.  SSRIs, or selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors, are the most common antidepressants. The physician may also suggest the use of sleep-enhancing vitamins and supplements. The results of some studies have indicated that selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors can impair your ability to conceive. It's important to weigh these risks against the health risks associated with not taking antidepressants when necessary.

Mindful cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)

Cognitive-behavioral therapy involves identifying and rephrasing inaccurate thoughts so they do not cause you harm. Participants in the study experienced lower rates of depression than those who did not take part in mindfulness-based CBT during IVF treatment.


 Participants learned how to:

  • Mindfully keep breathing, walk, and feed

  • explore their depressive symptoms

  • modify risky behavior, opinions, and attitudes

  • Use layered breathing to increase calm

  • Start making plans for when your depression symptoms worsen


Depression and infertility treatment in males

Due to the uncertainty surrounding infertility treatments, it is common for couples to experience psychological distress during the treatment.

No therapy has a 100% chance of conception. The associated IVF failure depression acts as an additive to infertility depression. Studies reveal that IVF depression and stress complement each other.



Psychiatric disorders can also affect infertility treatment, IVF success rates, and the body's ability to absorb a cure. An individual experiencing male infertility depression may become aware of the difficulty of fathering a child naturally.

IVF depression and IVF failure anxiety can be significantly reduced by consulting at all stages of fertility treatment and preparing the couple for such a diagnosis.

As a conclusion

Drug therapy may also be an effective treatment option in this case, but some people worry that antidepressants will lead to uncalculated assisted reproductive procedures. In general, pharmacological therapy benefits both the female and male partners, however, antidepressants are not recommended for pregnant women. Additionally, there is no consistent evidence that medications affect infertility treatment.


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