If you are undergoing fertility treatments, it's normal to feel a bit stressed out and tense. But will negative feelings get in the way of getting pregnant? No, say the authors of a large-scale study that investigated the link between stress and fertility treatment success. Published February 23, 2011, in an online issue of the British Medical Journal, researchers reviewed studies involving over 3,000 infertile women undergoing fertility treatments—women were assessed before treatment for anxiety and stress. The authors then compared data for women who achieved pregnancy and those who did not. No connection was found between stress level and whether or not a woman became pregnant.
"These findings should reassure women that emotional distress caused by fertility problems or other life events ... will not compromise their chance of becoming pregnant," says study lead author Jacky Boivin.
On the other side of this hotly debated issue are experts who feel strongly that a positive state of mind is essential for a positive pregnancy test. To feel more relaxed about the prospect of fertility treatments, try positive visualization, getting plenty of exercise and sleep, eating well, talking about your feelings with those close to you (or in a support group setting), and even getting a massage. Whether or not stress and tension play a role in whether or not you become pregnant, taking steps to de-stress will always be important for your overall well-being.