Women unable to bear child, men with abysmal sperm count, unable to father children are not just movie plot-lines today. This is a stark reality of the present that is plaguing the entire world. Infertility is a major issue faced by the world that has numerous reasons and severe social and psychological implications. Yet, it is not considered as a prime public health issue.
What Is Infertility
The term infertility refers to a person’s biological inability to conceive a child or contribute towards the same. It can be the case of a woman who is not able to complete the entire tenure of pregnancy and deliver a healthy baby. I can also be the case of a man not having proper sperm count to induce a pregnancy.
There are plenty of biological reasons to infertility and medical intervention methods that help overcome this issue. Since the 80s, infertility has risen by 4 percent every 5 years. Nearly 40 percent of all cases arise due to the man while an equal percentage of cases happen because of the woman. The remaining 20 percent of cases are due to complications with both partners.
The Challenges In Society Faced By Those Suffering From Infertility
Many cultures perceive infertility as a stigma. In fact, within closed social interactions, rejection of couples who cannot bear children is a common occurrence especially in developing and backward nations. This leads to considerable disappointment and anxiety within the couple. Many couples completely ignore this issue and disregard comments while others become desperate in their attempts to conceive a child.
Social groups, NGOs and the efforts of studies brought to light the stigma of infertility. Redbook in October 2011 began on a video campaign called The Truth About Trying, which centred on talking about infertility in an open and free manner. What was learnt through this attempt was that nearly every one in eight women faced infertility issues in the United States alone. More alarmingly, over 61 percent of inflicted persons or couples chose to hide infertility from their friends and family members. Almost half of the affected population chooses to not speak about this issue with their mothers and an even higher number chooses to stay quite altogether. The biggest challenge at present to society from infertility is overcoming the attachment of shame with the condition.
Now there are legal ramifications in place for infertility. In legal domains being infertile can be classified as a certain form of disability. Treatment for this condition includes surgery, therapy, diagnostic tests and artificial methods but all of these require leave of an extended duration. Work places are yet not educated or informed enough to provide support to individuals with infertility. This is again due to the lack of communication and awareness of the mass public.
The Actual Problem Of Infertility
The real problem posed by infertility is that when a person desires to raise a child but is unable to because of infertility it becomes a psychological and emotional barrier towards his or her healthy contribution towards society. Considering the lack of awareness about this issue, utter disregard by the public health sector towards branding infertility as a public health issue and the lack of support groups for this condition, infertility has slowly risen hidden from the public eyes. Today, it is a condition that plagues millions of people worldwide with no effective means of reducing or controlling the consequences.