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Study: High Stress Could Cause Infertility

BOSTON (CBS) -- Your stress level could keep you from getting pregnant.

Researchers part of a new study, say stress doubles your risk of infertility. Scientists took saliva samples from more than 500 women who were trying to conceive and tested it for an enzyme that indicates stress.

Related: Dr. Tara Shirazian, from Mount Sinai's Icahn School of Medicine, in New York, talks about the research with the "CBS This Morning"

"We found that women who had the highest levels of stress actually took 29% longer to get pregnant compared to other women, and their risk of infertility doubled," said lead author Courtney Lynch, PhD, MPH, of The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

The study followed couples who were trying to conceive for a year.

"There are certainly many other medical and lifestyle factors that can make getting pregnant difficult, but we now know that stress is something women and their doctors may want to consider," said Lynch.

Shirazian told CBS This Morning, she tells her patients not to worry about getting pregnant and to try stress-reducing technique such as meditation. Shirazian also recommends exercise and yoga as a stress-reliever.

More research is needed but stress may also affect mens' fertility.

"This is one marker where they are starting to test saliva in women," Shirazian said. "More research needs to be done."


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