Planning to have a baby? Pre-conception care can increase natural fertility
Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can help boost your health prior to conception so you and your eggs are as healthy as possible before your grand adventure to parenthood.
A healthy body and good egg quality is obviously key to having a healthy baby and for this reason it is widely recommended to nourish oneself for 3 months prior to conceiving because this is the amount of time an egg needs to mature, ovulate, fertilise, implant to finally make a baby.
Acupuncture and Chinese medicine has been treating infertility for over 2000 years and is increasingly recognized as a valuable treatment option either by itself or as in conjunction with western fertility treatments. Because of its ability to restore balance and harmony in the body, relieve stress, regulate hormone levels and influence both the menstrual cycle and ovulation. Acupuncture is an effective treatment for “unexplained infertility” by restoring reproductive health.
When is fertility acupuncture most important?
Proper nutrition, a balanced lifestyle and regular Acupuncture for 3 months prior to conceiving helps reduce stress, regulate cycles, improve wellbeing, increase nourishment to the eggs and the uterine lining thus increasing fertility and paving the way to a healthy pregnancy.
In infertile couples, the man would be sterile in 50% of cases. Acupuncture can improve semen quality and sperm count to create healthier embryos. It is important for both partners to eat a well balanced diet, cut out alcohol, reduce stress and avoid excessive exercise.
Fertility Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can:
- Regulate the menstrual cycle
- Improve ovarian function to produce better quality eggs
- Regulate hormone levels to produce more follicles
- Increase uterine blood flow to increase the thickness of the uterine lining
- Facilitate implantation
- Reduce stress
- Strengthen the body and decrease the chances of miscarriage.
The research on Acupuncture & Fertility
Cochrane, S et al, Fertil Steril (2016).. In this study researchers aimed to explore if acupuncture and lifestyle modifications can promote natural fertility. When compared to a control group which underwent lifestyle modification alone. Those receiving the acupuncture conceived within an average of 5.5 weeks compared to 10.67 weeks for the lifestyle only group. The women who received acupuncture benefited by an increase in their fertility awareness, well being, improved menstrual cycles, and conceived in half the time. Prior to Conception: The Role of an Acupuncture Protocol in Improving Women’s Reproductive Functioning Assessed by a Pilot Pragmatic Randomized Controlled Trial
FERTILITY, ACUPUNCTURE AND IVF
Paulus W et al, Fertil Steril (2002). 160 patients with good quality embryos underwent IVF. They were then divided into two groups through random selection: embryo transfer with or without acupuncture. Acupuncture treatments were 25 minutes long and performed before and after embryo transfer. Clinical pregnancies were documented in 42.5% in the acupuncture group, whereas pregnancy rate was only 26.3% in the control group. Influence of acupuncture on the pregnancy rate in patients who undergo assisted reproduction therapy, Fertility and Sterility Vol 77 721-724
IN VITRO FERTILIZATION
Hullender Rubin Lee, et al. (2015) In this study, 1231 IVF patient records were retroactively assessed and outcomes were compared between 3 groups; IVF done alone, IVF with acupuncture, and IVF with Whole Systems Traditional Chinese Medicine. The primary outcome was the rate of live birth. The whole systems TCM was associated with the greatest increase in live births 61%, compared with IVF alone (48%), or embryo transfer with acupuncture only (51%). Impact of whole systems traditional Chinese medicine on in vitro fertilization outcomes. Reproductive Biomedicine Online;pii:S1 472-6483(15)00092-
Studies have shown that Acupuncture can alleviate the pain of dysmenorrhoea and reduce peripheral blood and therefore may be applied as a complementary treatment for endometriosis related pain.
There is preliminary data indicating acupuncture may improve menstrual health and coping for women experiencing delays falling pregnant.