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Thread: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    61

    Default Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    Just a general question. I bfed my first for 25 months (a couple months into my next pregnancy). I had to cut way down at 19 months to ovulate for second pregnancy. I am now 38 nursing a 10 month old. I am entertaining the thought of having one more but I will probably nurse this one way past 12 months bc it's important to me. So far I've gotten pregnant on the first tries and I'm wondering if prolonged bfing that suppresses ovulation keeps you fertile longer. I know I have more egg reserves than if I had had more periods in between children, but also am aware that our eggs age with us. If I follow the same trajectory as with my first, I will be 39 with the next pregnancy and just 40 when I give birth. Thoughts? Insight? Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    Default Re: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    To my knowledge, duration of breastfeeding has no impact on the length of time a woman is fertile. A woman who never gets pregnant, gives birth, or breastfeeds will be fertile for around the same amount of time- statistically speaking- as a woman who has children and nurses them.

    It kind of makes sense, right? Because if we could somehow "bank" our fertility by nursing longer, nursing moms could be fertile while checking into the old age home.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Default Re: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    I have done no research, so don't take this for fact at all. But my guess is that women nearing the age of menopause will start to expel multiple eggs at a time if they need to in order to empty their ovaries, so it doesn't really matter too much if they breastfed their entire lives or whatever, their bodies will just play catch-up later in life...This makes some sense, at least, considering older women are more likely to conceive multiples...

  4. #4
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    Jun 2009
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    Default Re: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    Well that's an interesting idea. However with my admittedly very basic understanding, the reason an older woman has reduced fertility is because her eggs are also older. Not because they are gone. All women are born with their eggs. When they reach the age of fertility, some of those eggs will be viable and some will not. But after a certain age the viable eggs slowly become less and less viable. Since extended nursing does not retard the aging process then I don't think it nursing length has any bearing on fertility length.
    That said I want to assure you that it is entirely possible for a woman to get pregnant in her 40s and even in her early 50s. The oldest recorded mother having a child naturally (without fertility treatment) was 57 years old, according to a fertility specialist I once spoke with. No I am not suggesting it is easy or even likely for a woman of that age to get pregnant! Only that drawing the line at 40 is rather premature. Yes the a older woman is, the more her chance of conceiving goes down. but this is a statistical measure that may have no bearing at all on your individual experience. Whether or not an individual woman will be able to get pregnant or not at any age prior to menopause is unknown. I also think that since you know that you are capable of conceiving, and thus are unlikely to have some un-diagnosed non-age related issues with fertility gives you a better chance statistically speaking than a woman of the same age who has never tried to get pregnant before.
    Last edited by @llli*lllmeg; March 15th, 2014 at 01:30 PM.

  5. #5
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    Aug 2012
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    Default Re: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    I got pregnant at 42 with no conception assistance and delivered at 43, natural VBAC. The prior six years I had not conceived, but in 2012 I eliminated all inflammation foods from my diet - every form of bread, grain, rice, refined or processed sugar and all processed oils like canola. I had already been dairy free since 1997. Not because of anything tied to fertility. It was because I had constant joint and muscle pain that had been increasing over the years. After the diet change all the pain went away and surprise, I got pregnant.
    1st time mom over 40 to Alex(andra) b: 7/14/12

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    Minnesota
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    Default Re: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    I don't think that it directly increases fertility but some of the health benefits to mom certainly might improve your odds - weight loss, less risk of cancer or diabetes, for example. Your overall health does impact your fertility and the health of your pregnancies. Getting pregnant "later" in life (in quotes because that is really a relative term) comes with some risks - twins or Down's syndrome, for example - but it is totally doable and in all likelihood if you do get pregnant you will have a healthy, happy baby - all the more so because he or she will be blessed with a mom who is clearly very committed to breastfeeding.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
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    61

    Default Re: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    Thanks for the great responses, ladies!!!!

  8. #8

    Default Re: Does extended bfing lead to longer fertility?

    Quote Originally Posted by @llli*ehoneybee View Post
    Just a general question. I bfed my first for 25 months (a couple months into my next pregnancy). I had to cut way down at 19 months to ovulate for second pregnancy. I am now 38 nursing a 10 month old. I am entertaining the thought of having one more but I will probably nurse this one way past 12 months bc it's important to me. So far I've gotten pregnant on the first tries and I'm wondering if prolonged bfing that suppresses ovulation keeps you fertile longer. I know I have more egg reserves than if I had had more periods in between children, but also am aware that our eggs age with us. If I follow the same trajectory as with my first, I will be 39 with the next pregnancy and just 40 when I give birth. Thoughts? Insight? Thanks!


    Getting pregnant can be a challenge all by itself. But when you’re still breastfeeding your last baby, you may face some unique challenges in getting pregnant that you never expected. Clearly if you’re breastfeeding you’ve successfully gotten (and stayed) pregnant at least once. However, it may not be quite that easy the second time if breastfeeding is in the mix.

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