Join us for National Infertility Awareness Week!

This year’s National Infertility Awareness Week follows the theme of “you are not alone.”  ToConceive wants to Hope is...reiterate to couples who are struggling to conceive that they are NOT in this fight alone. Along with amazing national groups like RESOLVE, ToConceive wants to rally around couples and offer them hope and support.

In honor of the 2015 NIAW, ToConceive will be giving away 15 bottles of ToConceive each day through our Facebook page in support of the 1 in 8 couples struggling with infertility. Additionally, ToConceive wants to put a face on infertility and throughout the week will be highlighting infertility success stories, sharing additional resources and educating the general public on infertility issues.

Join us in spreading awareness and hope!

The Language of Infertility…Don’t Get Scared Now

Here’s another great blog post from Josh. We’re loving having an infertility point-of-view from the other side of the aisle!

There was a recent article released in the Huffington Post outlining 3 reasons why infertility is a hushed topic. It is a great article and I highly recommend that anyone struggling with infertility, and those that are not, give it a quick read.  As I read the article I couldn’t help but shake my head with approval and internally scream “YES!!!” and “Thank You!!”  This has been a topic that we have been speaking on for years now, and the information is starting to spread.

However, as I thought more on the article, I realized it only scratched the surface; 3 reasons why is it hushed? Only 3?  I think I can find 10 times that just scrolling through our twitter feed each night.  Just off hand, the words, stress, embarrassment, sperm capitation and fallopian tube come to mind.  How many men just cringed reading ‘sperm capitation’?  How many actually made it past fallopian tube?  I am sure less than you would think.  And therein lies the significant problem.

The Huffington Post article alludes to this topic, but doesn’t dive deeply into it; that’s what I am here for.Man Scratching Head

The language that is used in the fertility world is not for the faint of heart. We commonly speak of vaginal fluid, sperm, lubrication, and oh so many more.  A lot of men, including myself, for a long time, are not good at conversations that include this (I picture I lot of red faces and abrupt trips to Lowes to avoid the conversation).  This language is not in our everyday lexicon. Maybe it is because we think that it is not masculine to talk about this stuff, but I believe the opposite.  Speaking as a man, I would hope my wife would find it rather refreshing to hear me speak on this topic not fearful of embarrassment or shame.  This is life, guys, nothing is embarrassing about it.  Heck, maybe the ladies will find our new appreciation for technical terms sexy.

Here are some of the terms that we should not be afraid of and why:

Sperm – it’s life, without sperm you wouldn’t be here, nor would your partner.

Eggs – see sperm. Pretty important stuff.

Sperm Capacitation – sperm capacitation is a natural and essential process when a woman’s natural conception lubrication dissolves the immobilizing cholesterol from the sperm and creates an enzyme to allow the sperm to fertilize the ovum. That’s a lot of technical speak for a natural process required for a sperm to fertilize an egg.

Lubrication/ Vaginal fluid – important aspect to creating the a fertile environment for sperm travel. Visit http://www.keytoconceive.com/    for more information.

Sex – well, if I have to explain this one, we have a bigger issue to deal with.

Now, I know this conversation won’t be as easy as talking about football with your buddies, but just like in that conversation you know the ins and outs of a 3-4 defense, you need to know about reproduction and the factors that apply.

ToConceive Helps Couples Trying to Conceive Take Matters Into Their Own Hands

If you have a headache, you simply head to the drug store for pain relievers. If you’re dealing with infertility, you have to see a specialist. Now, imagine if treating infertility were as simple as treating a headache–simply using an over-the-counter treatment.

ToConceive is the first OTC therapy that can treat a number of infertility issues, including many male subfertility issues. Many couples incorrectly assume that it is the female’s issue that is leading to their inability to get pregnant. However, nearly half of all infertility comes from the man. Depending on what study you look at, male fertility issues account for anywhere from 30 to 60 percent of all couples’ infertility problems.

ToConceive is inexpensive, easy to use and available over-the-counter.

Azoospermia, the complete absence of sperm, is typically untreatable, but also extremely rare. Fortunately, most male infertility issues are treatable with the Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) of IntraUterine Insemination (IUI) and In Vitro Fertilization (IVF).

To treat male infertility, IUI and IVF both use laboratory in-vivo sperm washing, sperm swim-up and sperm capacitation to choose only the perfect, motile and capacitated sperm needed to achieve pregnancy. Unfortunately, IUI and IVF are invasive, expensive and not an option for many couples.

Like IUI and IVF, ToConceive mimics in-vivo sperm capacitation and accomplishes the same exact sperm selection functions to produce perfect, motile and capacitated sperm. However, ToConceive is inexpensive, easy to use and available over-the-counter.

As Dr. Thompson explains, in-vivo sperm capacitation works to allow only the fittest sperm to fertilize the egg, but can only do so with normal vaginal conception lubrication. When a woman uses ToConceive, it helps her produce and increase her own natural conception lubrication, which in turns capacitates the sperm, allowing it to travel the six or seven inches up the fallopian tube to penetrate and fertilize the egg. This in-vivo sperm capacitation also selects out immature and abnormal sperm and washes sperm coated with anti-sperm antibodies, according to Dr. Thompson.

Currently, ToConceive comes in one and three-month supplies and is available online through the Key to Conceive website (www.keytoconceive.com), as well as through Amazon, Drugstore.com and the Kindara app.

Run Your Way to Support NVM!

NVM 5kOne of our non-profit partners, Nehemiah Vision Ministries, will be hosting at 5k run/walk to benefit the organization’s mission of helping the people of Haiti. The race will take place on July 19 at the Northview Carmel Campus. Race starts at 8 a.m. Register for the race at http://www.nvm.org.

If you’re not going to be around for the run/walk or live out of town but still want to help NVM, check out the Crowd Rise page. www.crowdrise.com/nehemiahvision

Thinking of Men this June

Following is a guest post from one of our great partners, Don’t Cook Your Balls.

Men are supermen, right? They are impervious to all danger and illness. At the top of his game, a man is a force to be reckoned with, a superhero in his own right. Able to move heavy objects, sprint at high speeds and burn midnight oil to get the job done. But life wears us all out. With time, late nights drinking with the guys aren’t so easy the next day. A stressful job and long commute makes him want to crash on the couch rather than hitting the gym. Sometimes it can be hard to get a good night’s sleep.

spermWhy care about men’s health?

As life takes its toll on a man’s body, he just deals with it. Silently, as a society we’ve created a gender gap in health. Men are more likely to die younger, deal with more illnesses and receive less medical treatment than women. They are also more likely to face their health in isolation as they have smaller support networks and are less likely to ask for help.

Men’s Health Month

Championed by the Men’s Health Network, a non-profit that “reaches men where they live, work, play and pray”, Men’s Health Month is a dedicated opportunity to build awareness about men’s health issues. Here are some of the events that will be happening:

  • It’s a Guy Thing Fertility Summit – Kristen Magnacca Darcy and Don’t Cook your Balls have teamed up to offer a free 5 day online summit dedicated to all the issues surrounding male fertility. It is designed to help couples struggling with male fertility issues to learn more about the condition and connect to key resources to support their journey. It will cover key topics such as testosterone and fertility, varicocele – treat or not to treat, advanced treatment options for azoospermia, tips and tricks to communicating with your wife, what to do when biology won’t cooperate.
  • The Drive for Men’s Health – Dr’s Jamin Brahmbhatt and Sijo Parekattil, are leaving the operating room behind and taking to the highway to spread the word about men’s health issues. The two urologists and robotic surgeons have planned the first even Drive for Men’s Health event, traveling from Central Florida to NYC in an all-electric Tesla vehicle. The purpose of the Drive For Men’s Health is to encourage men to make their health a priority. Throughout the drive, the physicians will broadcast live through Google Glass in order to discuss men’s health issues, as well as related partners and sponsors.

There are many more great Men’s Health events happening throughout the country. Check out the official Men’s Health Month calendar to learn more.

Get Involved

Recent studies show that a man’s fertility can be a good indicator of his future health. Nearly all the health risks associated with chronic disease and early death — such as obesity, smoking, poor diet, high stress, lack of exercise and the like — have also been shown to impair sperm production. As our small part to raise awareness around this important issue, Don’t Cook your Balls is sponsoring a campaign to raise money and awareness for Men’s Health.

You can help! By simply posting a picture to facebook, twitter or instagram, you can raise awareness about men’s health issues AND raise money to support free health screenings for men.

What to do

  1. Take a picture: of something that is bad for your testicular health (smoking, tight pants, hottubs, a donut, you get the idea) with the phase “don’t cook your balls” somewhere in the picture
  2. Post the picture to facebook, twitter or instagram with the hashtag #dontcookyourballs
  3. Ask friends to like, share and retweet

During the month of June, for every picture posted that is tagged with #dontcookyourballs, $0.50 will be donated to the Men’s Health Network to support free health screenings for men. Posts with the most likes, favorites and retweets will be awarded weekly prizes, while the most popular post of the month will receive a grand prize.

Win a free bottle of ToConceive in honor of NIAW!

Hope is...In honor of the 25th anniversary of National Infertility Awareness Week, ToConceive is giving away 25 bottles of ToConceive to couples trying to conceive, in hopes of spreading hope to all couples TTC.

To enter, comment on this post letting us know what hope means to you. The first 25 to comment win!

To promote infertility education, we’ll also donate 25% of all profits during that week to RESOLVE.

The contest runs through Saturday, April 26.

 

New advancements in IVF and sperm capacitation

Here at Key to Conceive, we talk a lot of about sperm capacitation because it’s such an important part in the conception process. I thought it would be a good idea to review sperm capacitation because it is so important. Also, recently, researchers have made more discoveries on the importance of sperm capacitation. (You can read all about the new discoveries here.)

sperm-capacitationMany people understand that a woman needs to ovulate to release an egg and that a man’s sperm must fertilize that egg, but in between those steps, sperm capacitation must occur for the sperm to have the capacity to penetrate and fertilize the mature egg. Key to Conceive wants to educate people on the importance of the sperm capacitation step.

Sperm capacitation is essential for several reasons. First, a woman’s natural conception lubrication dissolves the immobilizing cholesterol from the sperm and creates an enzyme that allows the sperm to fertilize the ovum. A woman produces that natural conception lubrication when she becomes sexually aroused. When used regularly, ToConceive also helps a woman produce her own natural lubrication to aid in the capacitation process. Secondly, sperm capacitation selects out immature and abnormal sperm that lack capacitation. The process also selects out sperm coated with anti-sperm antibodies or strips off those antibodies to allow for proper capacitation. Sperm capacitation works to allow only the fittest sperm to fertilize.

Dad’s Diet Just as Important as Mom’s

Everyone talks about how it’s important for a TTC or pregnant woman to have a well-rounded diet. Studies now show that what dad eats can have a big effect on the baby as well. McGill University conducted a study that found a man’s diet has a direct effect on the health and development of a baby. The study concentrated on a man’s folate level (also called B9) and found that babies sired by a man with low folate levels had a 30 percent higher chance of birth defects. You can read about the whole study here.

So, what can men do to up their folate levels? They should increase their intake of folic acid. This can be done through a vitamin supplement or daily multivitamin. Men can also choose foods high in folic acid. Here are some excellent sources of folic acid to incorporate into your diet to increase folate levels:spinach

–Beans and legumes like lentils, pinto beans, garbanzo beans, black beans, navy beans, kidney beans and lima beans

–Leafy, green veggies like spinach, collard greens, turnip greens, broccoli and asparagus

–Citrus fruits and juices

Pre-Pregnancy Bucket List

Saying that a baby changes everything is pretty obvious, just ask any parent! A recent article on Celeb Baby Laundry  talked about 8 things you should do before getting pregnant. It was a pretty good list, talking about a number of important areas of your life to evaluate before you embark on the adventure of parenthood. Some of the high points:

1). Get a pre-pregnancy checkup

2). Get your finances in line

3). Talk with your partner

4). Start saving

Couple Using Digital Camera in Front of Eiffel TowerAlong the same line, I’ve come up with my own light-hearted pre-pregnancy bucket list. My list is a compilation of things my hubby and I did do before we had kids and some of it is what I wish I would have done.

1). Travel…go to as many places as you can. While traveling when you have kids is possible, it’s so much harder…lining up sitters, missing their sweet faces, etc.

2). Go on lots of dates…long gone will be the days when you can just up and go to dinner without paying out the nose for a sitter.

3). Pick up a hobby…if you don’t already have one, find something just for you. Once a baby comes, you feel like you lose part of your identity, so having a hobby that’s just for you will help you keep your sanity.

4). Strengthen your relationship…trying to keep another human being alive will consume both of you. If you go into having a baby with a strong relationship, it will be better for you both and especially for the baby.

If you’re thinking about having a baby, check off your own bucket list, then check out ToConceive to help increase your chances of conception each month!