(Daily Mail) Women who work more than 40 hours a week or routinely lift heavy loads may take longer to get pregnant than women who don't, a new study suggests.
Researchers followed 1,739 nurses who were trying to get pregnant and estimated 16 per cent of them failed to conceive within 12 months, and five per cent still hadn't conceived after two years.
Working more than 40 hours a week was linked with taking 20 percent longer to get pregnant compared to women who worked 21 to 40 hours.
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Moving or lifting at least 25-pound loads several times a day was also tied to delayed pregnancy, extending the time to conception by about 50 per cent.
"Our results show that heavy work, both in terms of physical strain and long hours, appears to have a detrimental impact on female nurses' ability to get pregnant," lead study author Audrey Gaskins, a researcher at Harvard T H Chan School of Public Health in Boston, said by email.
Most healthy couples can conceive within three to six months, though the process can take longer for people who are older or who have fertility compromised by certain medical conditions or by smoking or excessive drinking.