Here are some tips to increase your chance of pregnancy with intrauterine insemination (IUI).
Intrauterine insemination (IUI) is a simple procedure that can increase your chances of getting pregnant. A recent study by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence revealed that IUI is well worth the effort to try before resorting to in vitro fertilization (IVF). IUI is also a much cheaper and less invasive alternative to IVF (1).
Take this short fertility test to assess your current pregnancy potential and to obtain personalized tips on how to enhance your fertility. It will give you valuable and actionable information about yourself.
IUI is mostly successful in women who are younger or who have had a successful pregnancy in the past. IUI is also effective in couples diagnosed with unexplained fertility, coital disorders, mild male factor infertility, and minimal endometriosis. Typically the only requirements are that you have at least one open fallopian tube and that your partner has an adequate sperm sample.
What to expect during IUI
IUI is a relatively painless and routine procedure usually performed in a fertility clinic setting without anesthesia. It is commonly used in conjunction with controlled ovarian hyperstimulation (COH) as well as other medications that help induce ovulation such as clomiphene citrate, gonadotropins, or urofollitropins. Health monitoring, such as blood tests and ultrasounds, usually begin at day 6 of your menstrual cycle. These tests will predict when your eggs are mature and when you are ready for an injection of the human chorionic gonadotropin (hCG) hormone which will stimulate the release of your egg during ovulation. An exact date will then be set for your insemination. On the day of the insemination your partner's sperm sample will be washed and prepared. The IUI will only take a few minutes to perform before heading home or back to work.
Tips for a successful outcome with IUI
1. Choose the right type of IUI procedure
IUI often has a higher success rate than intracervical insemination. The type of fertility drugs used and its timing intake are also very important. Sperm washing is a part of IUI and can boost its success.
2. Take especially good care of yourself
a) Eat a healthy diet and add foods that have been linked to increase fertility. Focus on eating whole foods, including vegetables, fruits, and whole grains. Eat one or two servings per day of full-fat dairy products such as milk, yogurt, or cheese.
b) Stay hydrated and toxin-free by drinking lots of water.
c) Take a daily multivitamin that contains folic acid. Other supplements may be added based on your individual needs and physician recommendation.
3. Find ways to reduce and release your stress
There is a lot of evidence that shows that stress can reduce your chances of getting pregnant. Even the stress you experience when coping with infertility can be a barrier to conception and can trigger a miscarriage. Discover what helps you release stress and do it regularly. Common de-stressors include taking long walks, going for a bike ride, doing yoga every day, or joining a support group.
4. Take an expectorant to increase your chances of a successful IUI procedure
Fertility drugs such as Clomid can contribute to too much mucus build up in the uterus. Cough syrup (like Robutussin) can help to thin the mucus in your cervix to prevent your cervical mucus from becoming too thick and hostile to allow the sperm to survive.
5. Avoid strenuous exercise right before and after insemination
Strenuous activities could cause uterine contractions that could interfere with implantation. Light exercise such as light aerobics, swimming, walking, and yoga are fine. High impact exercise such as jogging and step aerobics should be avoided. It’s best to take it easy before and after the procedure to give your body the opportunity to relax and calm down.
6. Have a backup plan
Although IUI can improve chances of pregnancy, it isn't foolproof. If you aren't sure what is causing your fertility challenge, use this time to get to the root of your underlying issues. I good place to start would be with our fertility assessment test. After answering online a few questions regarding your health, a customized fertility report will be emailed to you outlining potential fertility risk factors with suggestions on how to make improvements.
If you are looking for a fertility treatment to help you conceive successfully, IUI may be the answer for you. It is certainly worth a try before proceeding to IVF, which is a much more expensive procedure.
Opionato (www.opionato.com) is your trusted go-to fertility expert accessible at anytime from anywhere. We assess your fertility potential and provide actionable next-step fertility advice - without the need for fertility testing or in-office visit. By doing so, we improve your fertility potential and conception chance so your path to pregnancy is short, cost-effective, and stress-free.
Opionato started with one woman’s personal fertility experience and the vision to give others what she lacked. Read Maja’s story here: https://www.opionato.com/blog/what-i-wish-i-knew-my-fertility-journey.