Acupuncture and Fertility
Every year in Great Britain, 27,000 couples receive infertility treatment, 1 in 6 results in a successful pregnancy. The pain that infertility causes is immense and when a couple does not have children it is not necessarily the result of a "lifestyle choice". It is difficult not to become obsessive about having a child, but acupuncture can help with managing the every day feelings of anxiety, frustration and sadness which come with the effort of trying to get pregnant.
Infertility affects both women and men. Couples can experience a variety of difficulties, they may have battled with miscarriage or be having difficulty wtih assisted conception.
Female infertility can arise from various reproductive issues, or might be unexplained.
Acupuncture stimulates the body's own healing systems and helps to restore natural rhythms. Lifestyle and nutrition will also play a part, as well as emotional wellbeing (individually and as a couple), which is often overlooked.
Acupuncture can be used on its own to assist fertilty or can be used to support fertility treatment, such as IVF and IUI. A research study published in the British Medical Journal (February 2008) concluded that "Acupuncture given with embryo transfer improves rates of pregnancy and live birth among women undergoing in vitro fertilisation".
Male infertility accounts for 40% of infertility cases. A normal sperm count today is half the quantity and quality that it was 20 years ago. Healthy sperm production is affected by hormones, fevers and infections, prescribed drugs and lifestyle.
Acupuncture can support a man in much the same way as a female can be treated, helping him reach his potential for fatherhood.
The research is still in very early stages, but whatever the statistics suggest, it is my experience that acupuncture does offer at the very least an aid to provide a calming effect upon the patient. Trying to get pregnant is an extremely sensitive and emotional time for both partners, there are highs and lows on a monthly basis, acupuncture can help them to relax and to counter the tension of the whole situation.