ACUPUNCTURE FOR FERTILITY
Acupuncture and Chinese herbs have been widely used in China to overcome fertility issues, and it is gaining momentum globally as a valid way to treat the couple trying to achieve pregnancy. Research has shown that acupuncture and Chinese medicine:
- Regulates the menstrual cycle
- Reduces stress by regulating hormones
- Strengthens the immune system
- Increases blood flow to the uterus and ovaries, creating a stronger chance for an egg to be nourished and carried to term
- Improves hormone levels (FSH, prolactin, estrogen, progesterone)
- Regulates the hormones to produce a larger number of follicles; improves ovarian function
- Improves the quality and thickness of the uterine lining
- Reduces uterine contractions after embryo transfer
- Lessens side effects of pharmaceuticals
- Decreases chance for miscarriage
WHY SHOULD YOU CONSIDER ACUPUNCTURE?
Fertility drugs are typically the first option for those suffering from infertility, and typically produce a 20 to 60% pregnancy rate. However, they also give rise to a plethora of side effects, such as fluid retention, abdominal tenderness, weight gain, bloating, and nausea. In contrast, acupuncture therapy for infertility has no side effects, and serves the same function: to stimulate the hypothalamus to balance the endocrine system and its hormones.
Couples suffering from infertility often find themselves burdened with stress and worry. One of the key ways in which acupuncture addresses infertility is by drastically reducing stress levels within the individual, further emphasizing the importance of the mind-body-heart connection in Chinese medicine. A very delicate balance exists between the hypothalamus, pituitary, and reproductive glands, and stress can have detrimental effects on the balance of this system. When people are stressed, the hormone cortisol is released in the brain, which alters its neurochemical balance, in turn altering the pituitary balance that is central to the reproductive cycle. Acupuncture therapy counters the effects of stress and cortisol by releasing endorphins in the brain, which is key to rebalancing the system and achieving pregnancy.
DOES ACUPUNCTURE WORK?
Research has shown that acupuncture increases contraception rates by 26% when used in conjunction with Western fertility treatments. When coupled with In-Vitro Fertilization, acupuncture can almost double the pregnancy success rates.