You’ve decided you want to get pregnant. You’ve stopped birth control. You have sex regularly. Maybe you’ve looked into some ovulation calendars or tests, but still nothing is happening.\nIt’s common to be frustrated when you don’t get pregnant as soon as you’d hoped. You may begin to wonder whether you should see a doctor about your fertility.\nWhen Is It Time to Talk About Fertility Struggles?\nMost couples are able to conceive on their own within a year. However, if you’ve been having unprotected sex for a year or more and haven’t become pregnant, you may want to see if your doctor can refer you to a fertility specialist.\nFor women age 35 or older, your chances of infertility increase. You’ll want to start a conversation with your doctor after six months of trying to conceive.\nLearn more about the comprehensive specialty care at Magee-Womens, UPMC Hamot, located in Erie, PA.\nIf you have a medical condition that can lead to fertility problems such as endometriosis, fibroids, or previous cancer treatment, you’ll want to talk to your doctor before trying to get pregnant. You can work together to monitor your condition and look for any possible risks of infertility to get treatment quickly.\nWhat Causes Infertility?\nIf you’re struggling to get pregnant, it can be because of a range of issues with the man or woman. Sometimes lifestyle habits like smoking, drinking, and poor diet can make it harder to get pregnant.\nIn about 40 percent of couples with infertility, the woman has a medical condition. These include:\n\nProblems with ovulation\nAge\nTubal abnormalities\nUterine abnormalities\nEndometriosis\nOther medical issues\n\nNearly half of all conception problems are because of male infertility. This usually means there’s a problem with his sperm, and this can be caused by:\n\nAntibodies\nEnvironmental factors, such as exposure to chemicals\nSpending long periods of time in a hot tub\nVarioceles (varicose veins in the scrotum)\n\nHow Do I Start Seeking Treatment?\nFirst, you’ll want to talk with your primary care physician or gynecologist about your concerns. Your provider can then refer you and your partner to a fertility specialist.\nWhen you meet with a specialist, he or she will review your medical history and perform diagnostic tests such as:\n\nImaging scans\nBlood tests\nSemen analysis\n\nOnce the specialist determines the cause of infertility, you can begin to talk about treatment options.\nYou have many treatment options depending on the cause from ovulation induction to in vitro fertilization. These methods have been successful for many couples, and there is reason to hope for a successful pregnancy.\nBe sure to ask all the questions you need to at your early appointments, and always talk about cost. Fertility treatment can be expensive, so find out what it costs and what payment options the provider offers.\nTo find more information on infertility, visit the Center for Fertility and Reproductive Endocrinology website.