mother's day

The easiest fertility check up: ask your mom!

Do you know at what age your mom reached menopause? Your aunt or grandmother? It's not something most women talk about. But this is the easiest, least expensive and least invasive fertility check up you can give yourself. Doesn't cost a dime or a drop of blood or even require two minutes spent in those dreaded stirrups.

The average woman reaches menopause (stops getting her period) in her early 50s. Anywhere between 45 and 55 years old is considered "normal".

But a woman's fertility drops dramatically during peri-menopause, which generally starts about 8 years before. So it is important to know if you may have a genetic tendency to reach menopause a bit younger than average.

What else can cause a woman to reach menopause early or lose her ovarian reserve younger than you would expect? Some causes can be reversed - such as smoking while taking the pill or being very overweight or very underweight. Some causes cannot be undone- such as having surgery to remove your ovaries, receiving certain cancer treatments, or as mentioned above, your genetics!

So this mother's day, ask your mom or aunt or grandmother how old she was at menopause. It is one of the most important questions we ask in our Egg-Q Fertility Check Up. And it is a key point you should bring up to your Ob-Gyn if your mom's answer is younger than 50 and you are planning on waiting and having your children a little later in life.