Every couple that goes through in vitro fertilisation to conquer infertility must know how to be careful after embryo transfer. Embryonic transfer, being the milestone in this whole process of conceiving through IVF, initiates the waiting process for couples to confirm pregnancy. After transferring the embryo into the uterus, you sit back and relax. However, several precautionary measures must be taken to be careful after embryo transfer. Expecting parents must follow a proper lifestyle to gear up for the upcoming pregnancy. Minor lifestyle adjustments can make a huge difference in increasing their chances of being parents to a healthy baby. It takes around two weeks after the embryo transfer to confirm pregnancy. In the meantime, there are several steps that you should take to prepare your body. Let’s discuss these preventive measures in detail.
Tips and precautions
Parents-to-be must give their bodies at least three months to prepare for a healthy baby. This process is crucial for a successful pregnancy as it helps the sperm reach its full potential. Following are some of the tips to boost your chances of a successful pregnancy:
- Sit back and Relax:
The most important thing you can do to relax your body is to keep all the strenuous activities at bay. After transferring your embryo, the doctors advise complete bed rest for hormonal and psychological changes that go on in the body. Some relaxing activities include meditation, listening to music, talking with friends, doing things you love, etc. Please note to take proper medications and supplements as prescribed. In case you miss them, consult your doctor.
- Refrain from challenging physical activities:
After embryo transfer, keeping the body movement as comfortable as possible is essential. It means restricting vigorous physical activities like jumping, running, jogging, swimming, lifting weights, or bending. Such activities may lead to complications. Instead, you can enjoy your evening walks, yoga, etc. Also, maintain a healthy body weight. The ideal Body Mass Index of Indians is less than 23.0kg/m2. Being above this BMI makes it difficult for a successful pregnancy through IVF.
- Follow a balanced diet:
Maintaining a healthy diet is pivotal post-embryo transfer.
For expectant mothers, a nourishing meal accelerates ovulation. Consider eating spinach, broccoli, potatoes, soybeans, strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, soy milk, whole grains, brown rice, whole bread, pumpkin seeds, black sesame seeds, eggs, milk, yogurt, salmon, sardines, avocado, olive oil, legumes, peas, kidney beans, winged beans, green beans, and lentils.
Choosing the right foods is crucial for a father-to-be, supporting male reproductive health and enhancing sperm vitality. Foods like eggs, soybeans, walnuts, tomatoes, garlic, oysters, beef, bananas, pomegranates, chocolates, and various berries aid in increasing sperm volume and promoting the production of highly motile and vigorous sperm. These nutrient-rich options not only contribute to sexual drive but also improve overall sexual stamina, benefiting in their journey towards parenthood.
- Include Folic acid supplements:
Beginning a daily folic acid supplement, recommended at 400 mcg during pregnancy post-embryo transfer, reduces deformity risks and enhances IVF success. High-risk women may receive extra folic acid in their prenatal prescription, initiated three months before conception. Vitamin D, prescribed after deficiency evaluation, aids pregnancy but requires medical supervision to avoid interactions with fertility drugs. Balancing essential nutrient intake is crucial for a successful pregnancy journey.
- Refrain from sexual intercourse:
After IVF embryo transfer, avoid sexual activity for two weeks to ensure proper implantation and embryo development. Pressure from intercourse may lead to uterine contractions, impacting the process. Consult with your doctor for specific guidance on abstaining duration. Additionally, the father-to-be should refrain from sexual activities for 3-4 days before sperm collection to optimize sperm quality.
- Observe problematic symptoms:
Extended hormonal treatments may lead to ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS) in some women, causing inflamed and painful ovaries with various symptoms. Vigilantly watch for signs like severe abdominal pain, bloating, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhoea. Ignoring seemingly mild symptoms can escalate the condition, so consult your doctor promptly for any abdominal discomfort or pain.
- Avoid heat and harmful chemicals:
Maintaining an optimal body temperature is crucial for a successful pregnancy during IVF. Excessive uterine heat can disrupt hormones, embryo implantation, and foetal development. Avoid hot environments, and hot foods, and be cautious of endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs) in household products. Opt for organic and EDC-free products after embryo transfer in IVF.
- Get enough sleep:
Adequate sleep is essential for rejuvenating organs and metabolic processes. For those facing infertility, doctors recommend 7-8 hours of nightly sleep. Avoid eating 2-3 hours before bedtime and refrain from caffeine at least 4-6 hours before sleep to boost the chances of successful pregnancy and IVF procedures.
- General tips:
Post-embryo transfer, continue prenatal vitamins and adopt a nutrient-rich diet to boost IVF success. Limit caffeine to 1-2 cups daily to improve pregnancy rates. Avoid smoking and excessive alcohol, which can compromise IVF outcomes and sperm quality. A holistic strategy, blending nutrition, lifestyle changes, and medical guidance, is critical to optimizing the IVF journey.
Issues that might arise-
After embryo transfer in IVF, several issues may arise, potentially impacting the success of the procedure. These issues include:
- Implantation Failure: The embryo may not successfully attach to the uterine lining due to factors like embryo quality and uterine conditions.
- Poor Endometrial Receptivity: The uterine environment may not be conducive to implantation. Possible causes can be hormonal imbalances, uterine abnormalities, etc.
- Early Developmental Abnormalities: Genetic or chromosomal issues may impact the early stages of foetal development. Abnormalities in the embryo's genetic makeup can lead to developmental challenges.
What to do in case of emergency
In cases where issues arise after embryo transfer in IVF, it's crucial to work closely with your fertility specialist to address and navigate the challenges. Careful monitoring and personalized care taken after embryo transfer are crucial to managing and mitigating these potential issues. Regular follow-ups, adherence to treatment recommendations, and a collaborative approach with your healthcare team are essential during this phase of the IVF journey.
- How can lifestyle changes enhance pregnancy success after embryo transfer in IVF?
- Adopting a healthy lifestyle, including avoiding strenuous activities, maintaining a balanced diet, taking folic acid supplements, and ensuring adequate sleep, can optimize the chances of a successful pregnancy.
- Are there specific precautions to prevent complications post-embryo transfer?
- Yes, precautions such as refraining from sexual intercourse, monitoring for symptoms of ovarian hyperstimulation syndrome (OHSS), avoiding heat exposure, and steering clear of harmful chemicals help minimize potential complications and support embryo implantation.
- What issues might arise after embryo transfer, and how can they be addressed?
- Potential issues include implantation failure, poor endometrial receptivity, and early developmental abnormalities. In emergencies, close collaboration with fertility specialists, regular follow-ups, and adherence to treatment recommendations are crucial for managing and mitigating challenges in the IVF journey.
After embryo transfer in IVF, it's important to be careful for a successful pregnancy. Simple steps like taking it easy, eating well, and getting enough sleep are crucial. Avoiding activities like sex and watching for any issues, such as OHSS, are also important. If problems arise, working closely with fertility specialists is key for a healthy IVF journey. Keeping a balanced lifestyle and following medical advice offers the best chance for success.
Ready to embark on your fertility journey or gather more information about IVF treatment? Book a consultation with Goral Gandhi, a renowned clinical embryologist and fertility consultant in Mumbai at Global IVF Clinic. Let us guide you, addressing your concerns and offering the expert insights you need. Contact us to schedule a complimentary consultation today. Let's work together to turn your parenthood aspirations into a beautiful reality.