View Full Version : Stress and TTC
I've seen this mentioned here and there throughout the Family Planning boards and I'm wondering if I can flush it out a bit.
I've heard stress can and can NOT mess up your cycle. There are numerous posts from women fearing they are pregnant because AF is late who are often advised their cycle may be off because of stress. I have also though seen posts indicating stress is not a factor here.
And I just saw a post from someone eagerly awaiting ovulation that doesn't seem to want to come. There was mention to her it was because she was stressing about it.
So it seems there are various stresses, there is the stress of daily life stuff and then there is the stress of TTC. Is there a difference? Can they both mess with your cycle or is it an excuse when we can't get pregnant?
I am mostly interested because I am TTC. :confused:
Ole Miss Bride
08-26-2005, 10:30 AM
Stress can affect your cycle and TTC, but I think most people would agree it has to be pretty extreme stress. Being anxious about ovulating or stressing over your charts are unlikely to be the kind of stress that would delay O. Stress from a major life disruption (moving, job change, death in the family, etc.) or illness would be more likely to affect your cycle, and even then, it doesn't always happen. I mean, think about it. Women in war-torn countries conceive babies all the time. If that's not getting pregnant during times of stress, I don't know what is.
08-26-2005, 10:52 AM
If that's not getting pregnant during times of stress, I don't know what is.
I recently read a set of articles saying that stress can delay ovulation, but not hinder conception - and if women are assuming that they O'd on Day 14, so stopped BDing, but really O'd on Day 19, then... Another article said that there's no indication that stress influenced IVF conception rates at all, which supports the "stress delays ovulation, doesn't hinder conception/implantation" thing in a round-about way.
08-26-2005, 11:35 AM
I'm sure someone can explain this better than me, but what I remember reading in TCOYF is that stress can delay ovulation, but that the time between ovulation and getting your period is fairly consistent (not from woman to woman, but for one individual woman) and not affected by stress. In other words, if you are stressed, you might be ovulating later than normal, but once you have ovulated, stress would not/could not affect the number of days that would pass between when you did ovulate and when you got your period.
So... the stress of wondering if you're pregnant a day or two before your period is due could not affect when you get you get your period, but stress early in your cycle could affect when you ovulate, pushing back your whole cycle.
FWIW, I don't know for sure that that's all true or not--just what I read in that particular book.
From my experience, I agree that it's more extreme stress that can delay ovulation/disrupt your cycle.
In however many months of charting, I had just two "abnormal" cycles -- one was associated with extreme physical stress right before O (skipped O altogether) and one was associated with extreme emotional stress at the beginning of my cycle (delayed O by about 5-7 days). The little daily stresses of bad traffic, work conflicts, and disappointment when I didn't get PG didn't seem to do anything to my cycles. However, I should add that I have a really stable cycle. I suppose it could be different for someone who doesn't have a regular O to begin with.
08-26-2005, 02:56 PM
Stress can affect your cycle. It can delay your ovulation. If you've already ovulated, stress can't stop AF from coming. (tenofcups, yes that's true info.)
Stress can also affect fertility, according to some studies. There are some out there who believe that if you're under a lot of consistent stress (e.g. from work) that it can cause your uterus to have tiny, unnoticeable contractions. Kind of similar to little muscle spasms that you could have in your back or face from being stressed. If that is happening when a fertilized egg is trying to implant in the uterus, it can disrupt the implantation and therefore cause a very early, undetectable, miscarriage. You wouldn't even know you'd conceived. Not everyone agrees with this theory, but it is interesting.
Regardless of how it affects you, I think pretty much every doctor can agree that if you do relaxing things while you're ttc and try to take care of your stress levels, it can only help!
08-27-2005, 06:48 AM
I think stress can definitely mess up your cycle. I've known people so stressed (extreme situations mind you) that they stopped having their monthly cycle for a short time and it didn't have anything to do with their weight. They ended up getting it back when life calmed down.
I know my cycles have been thrown off at times when I was going through major stress. But daily stress has never affected me I don't think.
I think that if you put enormous pressure on yourselves TTC, all that emotional strain may delay things. Stress can make you sick... and an unhealthy body doesn't always have an easy time conceiving. Of course there are always exceptions.
There seems to be general agreement here. Very interesting. Thank you everyone who commented.
08-27-2005, 08:42 AM
Scooter congratulations on your pg!!!! I've been following your journey for a long, long time now! Wishing you a H&H 9 (10) months!!!! :D:D
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