10 Early Red Flags of Infertility that You Should be Aware of

You need to stay aware of the factors that affect your fertility – no matter if you’re trying to get pregnant now or plan to conceive in future. Generally, there are some early signs of fertility that couples may experience.

You do not need to fret over every small change in your body, but make sure you do not miss any red flags of infertility. To assist you to stay aware – we give you some early red flags of infertility.

Early Signs of Infertility in Women:

Irregular Periods

Having irregular periods is normal when you start to menstruate because the body takes a little time to get regulated. However, once you get by with your teenage years, your menstrual cycles should be regular. An irregular period cycle may indicate an ovulation problem, so it is an early sign of infertility in women. There are many causes for irregular periods, and some of them are:

  • PCOS
  • Extensive exercise
  • Lower ovarian reserves
  • Thyroid dysfunction
  • Hyperprolactinemia
  • Ovarian insufficiency

Painful periods

It may sound unusual, but painful periods do indicate fertility problems. The cramps that you experience every month do not refer to painful periods. Painful period means when the pain is so severe that it deters you from your routine and leads to troubles such as nausea or vomiting.

Along with this red flag of infertility, blood during bowel movements, painful sexual intercourse and blood in the urine are indicators of infertility caused by endometriosis. Endometriosis is a reproductive condition that is a cause of infertility in women. If you have painful periods, visit your gynaecologist to find out why.

Shorter Menstrual Cycle

A brief follicular phase or a luteal phase deficiency may get indicated by periods shorter than 21 days. If your follicular phase is too brief, then it could mean your ovary is shedding the egg too early in your cycle. This can happen if the egg reserve begins to deplete and the body produces more FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone), so ovulation occurs sooner.

After ovulation, the luteal phase is the second phase of your monthly cycle. If it’s short, just under 12 days after ovulation, it could indicate that you’re having trouble with implantation.  

Skipped Periods

Women expect periods to remain regular each month, but periods indeed avoid doing what we expect them to do. The absence of periods is another early sign of infertility in women. You can come across numerous causes for why you have skipped periods, so consulting your doctor is essential.

Skipped periods can also indicate premature ovarian insufficiency, so your egg quantity has decreased to the point where you don’t have enough eggs to ovulate, and your periods have stopped. Because it’s impossible to detect the cause of a missed period on your own, consult a doctor if you’re not getting your period.  

Heavy Periods

If you need to change a thick pad or a tampon every hour, there is a substantial increase in the bleeding volume over the years, and you tend to bleed onto your clothes, then you have heavy periods, and you must not ignore them.

Heavy periods may imply the presence of fibroids, the benign muscle tumours in the uterus that lead to heavy bleeding and may affect fertility in some women. Your doctor will do a pelvic ultrasound and physical examination to evaluate fibroids.  


Age plays an integral role in conceiving. With age, fertility in both men and women keeps on declining. The risk of infertility in women increases when they are over 35 years of age. And, even if a woman over 35 ends up conceiving, the risk of miscarriage or giving birth to a baby with congenital disease increases.

A woman around 30 years of age has a 20% likelihood of getting pregnant, while a woman over 35 years of age has a 5% chance of getting pregnant. Age influences male infertility, though not as strong as female fertility. Male fertility and sperm health decline with age, according to research.  

Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)

PCOS is a medical condition that indicates overproduction of male hormones, irregular menstrual cycle, and ovarian cysts in women. When you notice hair growth in unusual places such as the back, arms, chest or face, it’s your red flag for the early sign of infertility in women.

Moreover, sudden weight gain, which is unexplained, is something you should not ignore. Weight plays an important role in fertility, even if a woman does not have PCOS. Being overweight or underweight can lead to fertility issues.

Early Signs of Infertility in Men:

Testicular Pain or Swelling

One of the signs of infertility in men is testicular pain or swelling. It also includes testicular torsion, which is an infection or hernia. Although testicular pain or swelling does not always symbolise male infertility, you should consider visiting your infertility specialist to understand the cause.  

Changes in Sexual Drive

When men have unexpected shifts in sexual desire, it is thought to be a sign of hormonal problems. In males, insufficient pituitary gland activity is the most common cause of infertility. When supplements and steroids are used frequently, hormones get disrupted, and sex drive and fertility are affected.  

Erectile dysfunction

Erectile dysfunction is often present in couples experiencing infertility and is linked to hormonal imbalance. This can be a result of an accident or a medical condition, prescription drugs, or psychological issues such as stress, anxiety, or depression.

Now you know the early symptoms of infertility in men and women. However, these symptoms do not indicate that you’re surely infertile. You should consult Dr Manish Banker from Banker IVF, the best IVF centre in Ahmedabad, if you suffer from any of these symptoms or are trying to conceive but are unable to do so.
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