Will Herpes Impact Your Fertility?
Wanting to know if you can get pregnant if you have herpes?
I get questions all the time about pregnancy and herpes. In fact, this was one of the first questions I asked when I was first diagnosed back in 2011.
There are so many myths out there that demonize herpes and make us feel like we no longer have the same rights a people who don’t have herpes. It’s 100% BS and yes, you can have a baby.
I talk about herpes and pregnancy in other episodes and I’ll have them linked so you can hop over and check them out as well. But today I want to talk about fertility specifically.
It’s so funny right, we spend forever doing our best to not get pregnant and then when we want to get pregnant we have a ton of questions and wonder if we really can. Oh and add a herpes diagnosis to the mix.
Personally, as a woman, my fertility was something I never worried about. I mean, we're not taught to worry about it. We're taught to worry about getting pregnant so why would I worry about “if” I could get pregnant. I’m going to side track to me a bit and right now I’m 4 months pregnant! Yay! But I have to tell you it wasn’t an easy journey and having herpes really had nothing to do with it. It took my husband and I 2 years to conceive and I wish I would have known more about it when I was younger.
I’ll get back to my fertility journey but first I want to address how maybe slightly herpes could impact your trying to conceive journey.
This could prevent you from getting it on during the prime fertile time. My husband likes to call it my flower day. If you keep having outbreaks and cant have sex then yes, having herpes can impact your ability to get pregnant. Some ways around this would be to get on the antiviral. This will help reduce your outbreaks so that you and your partner can hump like bunnies.
Wanting to Use a Condom
There’s a lot of couples who want to use condoms no matter what. And that’s ok if it's your jam. The problem is that the condom is obviously going to prevent the sperm and the egg from meeting. That’s a problem. If you’re in a situation where this is a problem I suggest talking to your partner and looking at the risk versus reward. If you’re a male with herpes and don’t have an outbreak, not taking the antiviral and not using a condom you have a 4% risk of transmitting herpes to your female partner. If you’re a female with herpes and don’t have an outbreak, don’t use a condom and are not on the antivirals then you have a 10% chance of transmitting it to your partner.
And then there was this study done in Iran and it was the only study that I could find on fertility and herpes. I’m not saying it's bogus and I’m not saying it's something to focus on. This study says that having herpes may impact the sperm count in men with herpes. I have the link to the article but basically it states that in more than half of infertile men there’s no answer to why they’re infertile. When a study was done they tested sperm from men with HSV 1 and HSV 2 as well as with men who do not have herpes. The sperm with herpes infected men came back with abnormal semen parameters and lower sperm count. Again, I don’t know all the details around the study and what “normal” semen parameters are. If you’re interested, here’s the link to read the study on your own. Again...I want to emphasize this is only 1 study and not something written in stone. And personally I don’t think I’d worry too much about it.
Back to fertility and learning how important it is as a woman to know you’re fertility and how your hormones are. This has nothing to do with herpes but after struggling personally to get pregnant I wish I would have tested my fertility in the past. See the older women get, the less healthy our eggs are and our fertility hormones are. I recently was interviewed by Modern Fertility regarding pregnancy and fertility when it comes to herpes. You can read it here. But really what I want to emphasize here is take herpes out of the equation and if having a baby is something that is extremely important to you then check out your fertility profile. Seriously I wish I would have done this before trying to get pregnant. It would have given us information to make decisions based on the information from the test. You can go here to get your own test and we have a special discount for our members.
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