Couples who have had a tough time getting pregnant often turn toward assisted reproductive technology (ART) — think in-vitro fertilization (IVF), intrauterine insemination (IUI), and intravaginal insemination (IVI).
Unfortunately, these fertility treatments can be expensive, invasive, painful, and time-consuming.
That’s what prompted 36-year-old S. L. and her husband, who’s a year older, to try the twoplus Applicator instead of pursuing ART like many other TTC (trying to conceive) couples. Not a fan of injections, she decided to seek a less daunting route by trying home insemination with the Applicator, a self-insemination syringe that works with ejaculated or donated sperm.
Read on to find out how the Applicator helped her get pregnant and why she thinks couples should be more open to alternative fertility options.
Disclaimer: The information provided in this article is not intended as medical advice.
S Gives Her Stamp of Approval for the Applicator
Interview responses were edited for clarity.
Q: Hi, S! How did you find out about twoplus Fertility?
Q: Tell us a bit about yourself and your husband! How long have you tried to conceive (TTC) before using twoplus?
A: We tried for about 7 months before using twoplus. We are leading quite a hectic lifestyle with long working hours, so we had to plan for each cycle carefully.
Q: If you could go back to the beginning of your TTC journey, is there anything you would have done differently? Also, do you have any suggestions or words of encouragement for other couples who are TTC?
A: I think I would have tried out the Applicator much earlier. What made me hesitate was the cost of each syringe. But I felt it was worth it to join the GPP, as I’ll also get video call check-ins which I thought were helpful and encouraging.
When I told some of my closer friends (who conceived naturally previously) that I used [the] Applicator, I felt I was being judged by some who did not regard this as a “natural” pregnancy, and perhaps not open-minded enough to think of other ways of conceiving before IUI and IVF.
So I hope couples out there who are TTC would not be discouraged to try [the] home insemination method by using the Applicator. And perhaps as Asians, we ladies seldom use tampons, so it was probably harder to imagine how to insert a syringe inside your body. I was also afraid but I had to overcome the fear.
Using the Applicator was a breeze for me as compared to my painful experiences with the normal syringes. So I really wish that this will give hope to couples who are TTC and give the Applicator a try.
Lastly, I need to thank twoplus for inventing such a product. It really saved me from further struggles of trying or resorting to SO-IUI. I’m really glad to have discovered such a product and really fortunate to be successful on my first-month attempt!
Q: What were some of your fertility struggles before the pregnancy?
A: As I’m above 35 years old, I was feeling worried about my fertility and biological clock. I was struggling emotionally each month when we were not successful and also struggled to express myself and communicate with my husband.
Q: Were you diagnosed with any medical conditions relating to fertility by a licensed healthcare professional, and what tests did you do?
A: We did a fertility assessment with a blood test for myself and semen test for my husband, and was informed by the doctor that my thyroid level is not ideal for pregnancy. I also did a HSG* (hysterosalpingography) test and the results [showed] a potential blockage in one of my fallopian tubes.
*A note from twoplus: A HSG test is an X-ray test to check for fertility-related abnormalities in the womb and fallopian tubes.
Q: What have you tried in your TTC journey before joining twoplus’ GPP (Getting Pregnant Programme)?
A: The doctor recommended us to try out the home insemination by using normal syringes. We also tried out TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) medication [shortly] before we started the GPP.
Q: Is this your first successful pregnancy?
A: Yes, and I hope it’ll be a smooth journey!
Q: What did you like/dislike about the Applicator and supplements?
A: I absolutely loved the Applicator as compared to the normal syringes that I’ve used before as it’s simple to use. I also did not have semen leakage after inserting the Applicator.
Once inserted correctly, it was not painful at all and we managed to insert it as deep as possible. The normal syringes that I’ve used before were quite painful when inserted hence it couldn’t be inserted as deep as the Applicator.
Q: How often did you use the Applicator and supplements before you successfully got pregnant?
A: I think we were very fortunate. We used all the Applicators [each GPP package comes with a 3-pack Applicators every month for six months] and it was a success for us on our first-month attempt!
Q: Did you adopt any lifestyle changes to improve your odds of conceiving?
Q: Would you recommend the Applicator and supplements to other people who may have difficulties with natural conception?
A: Yes, I did not regret trying this out. Good to try before seeking IUI and IVF treatments.
Explore Your Options Before Trying ART
If you, like S, prefer painless and minimally invasive ways of getting pregnant, it may be worthwhile to give the Applicator a shot. As easy to insert as a tampon, this self-insemination syringe is also ideal for people who experience discomfort during penetration or prefer to avoid the stress of scheduled sex.
Did you love reading about other people's success stories when trying to conceive? If you wish to share your experience of getting pregnant after using twoplus' products, share your story via this form. Bonus: You'll be rewarded for your efforts!
Please note that the Getting Pregnant Programme (GPP) is no longer available.