This is a huge topic nowadays. The short answer is YES! Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can absolutely help increase fertility.
My daughter is 16 now. Before she was conceived and before I knew anything about Chinese Medicine, I had experienced a couple of miscarriages. These experiences left me wondering if I would ever be able to have a successful pregnancy? It also left me question “What’s wrong with my body that it can’t hold onto a baby?” That’s a devastating question for any woman to ask herself. To feel like you are a failure at something that seems so natural was heartbreaking.
I quickly dug out my herb and nutrition books and started researching what I could do to balance my hormones and improve my overall health for fertility. I found this random herb – random at the time – called Dang Gui. That just sounded weird. It said that it would balance my hormones and help with menstrual blood and cramps and all sorts of other things that I had going on. So I decided to give it a try. Within 2 months I was pregnant with my daughter. I should also mention that I was 21 at the time, and my body responded very fast because of this.
That was my first real life experience in learning how to increase fertility with the power of Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine. I didn’t know it at the time but Dang Gui is one of, if not the, most important female herbs in the entire Chinese Medicine pharmacopeia.
So how can Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine help YOU increase YOUR fertility?
It’s all about the blood. Getting a woman’s blood strong, healthy and abundant is the Chinese Medicine key to making a desirable home for your baby.
If you are considering pursuing Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture to help with your fertility, here is what it typically looks like in my clinic.
- Intensive 2-hour consultation – This is where I get to know you inside and out. Practically speaking this is the most important session we will have together. It’s where I will ask you tons of questions about your health, history and lifestyle. It is also here where I will start to understand which organ systems might be out of balance and are causing your hormonal disruption. I take your pulse and look at your tongue – two of the pillars of Chinese Medical diagnosis – and come up with a treatment plan suited specifically to you.
- Treatment Plan – After we know what we are dealing with I come up with a treatment plan specifically catered to you. Typically though this looks like coming for weekly acupuncture sessions for 2-3 months. In TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) we say it takes 3 months to balance your hormones. Once that time is up we re-assess, see what we have achieved, and move forward accordingly.
- Herbal Medicine and Lifestyle suggestions – This is all part of your treatment plan. We match one or a few herbal prescriptions to your diagnosis and make lifestyle suggestions based on the same principal.
Now, here are some things you can do in the meantime in learning how to increase fertility and get your hormones on track
- Diet – Diet is, of course, huge when it comes to proper health and hormonal balance. After all, it is the medicine we put into our bodies daily. There is a lot to say about this so I invite you to download this 6-page report I compiled based on a Harvard study done on over 18,000 nurses following their diet and fertility. It highlights the importance a plant-based diet plays in fertility. This article from the Huffington post about the 10 best fertility super-foods agrees. Having a good and balanced diet is crucial for a healthy Spleen and Stomach organ system. The Spleen and Stomach are the first steps to making blood in the body via the food and drink we consume.
- Sleep – Sleep is of the utmost importance for life and hormone balance. So important I’ve done a whole other blog on it. The long story short is that it messes you up and has been linked to infertility, depression, weight gain, anxiety, etc. It can spike your cortisol and mess with Leptin, Progesterone, Estrogen, Follicle Stimulating Hormone (FSH), and Luteinizing Hormone (LH). This Article states that on average pregnant-women-to-be should be sleeping 7-9 hours nightly. Incidentally Acupuncture is one of the best ways to moderate your cortisol and balance your hormones. Not sleeping also affects the Liver and Heart organ systems in TCM; both which play big roles in keeping the menstrual cycle running smoothly. To read more about insomnia and some ways you can curb it click here.
- Herbs – I don’t usually dole out advice on this topic until I have seen someone. Because herbs are so powerful, specific and effective when used properly I recommend seeing someone who can accurately diagnose and prescribe what might be best for you. I won’t give you any specifics on herbs but I will say this; suppose you have a cold and damp constitution – you will probably only know this by being properly diagnosed by a TCM practitioner. The last thing you want to do is to take an herb that is cold and damp. It will exacerbate your symptoms and steer you further from your goal. So don’t take what the Internet tells you or what your friend used to get pregnant in one month. You are unique, Honor That! And that includes using Dang Gui like I did lol, I got lucky. Think of it like this: you wouldn’t take a pharmaceutical drug unless your MD prescribed it, so don’t do it with natural medicine either.
- Relax – This is more important than any herb or food you are putting in your mouth, in my opinion. If you are stressed while eating, your digestion suffers and what good is that. Stress wreaks absolute havoc on the hormonal system. According to TCM it affects the Liver organ system, which is responsible for a smooth flow of Qi in the body and therefore a smooth flow of hormones. As well, the Liver stores the Blood that is delivered to the Uterus. See what WebMD says about stress and conception by going here.
If you have any questions about fertility and if Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can play a role in your fertility journey please feel free to contact me. To read about some fertility success stories I’ve had the pleasure of assisting visit here.
With love from Kelowna, BC