Age and fertility have a fairly predictable relationship; essentially it’s best when we’re in our late teens and early 20’s, and after then it’s never quite as good! However there are differences to this ‘big picture’ for both sexes, and ways to check a person’s fertility ‘status’ and even roll back the years and improve it a bit. Girls have a set number of eggs in their ovaries at puberty, and after this hundreds of them are ‘recruited’ in batches each menstrual cycle, which leaves less eggs in the ‘ovarian reserve’.
Some girl’s ovarian reserves are many times that of others when they reach puberty, plus there are variations in how many eggs a woman recruits each cycle, which combine to have a big effect on ovarian reserve size at different points in a woman’s reproductive life. The size of ovarian reserve usually starts to change conception rates from around the age of 32 (it’s seen more clearly around 35), but this varies across the population (eggs and age), and for one woman in a thousand her ovarian reserve is exhausted at the age of 30.
Ovarian reserve is really important for fertility and getting it tested is recommended when:i