Integrative Medicine Treatment of Infertility – Part 1
When you and your partner decide on starting a family, the issue of infertility comes to mind. For those who have been through this journey, it is often an emotionally draining and lonely. Statistics have also revealed that after conceiving,10 -25 % of pregnancies end in miscarriages.
Infertility is defined as the inability to conceive a pregnancy after one year. It affects around 15% of couples, and it arises from one or a combination of the following factors:
- Production of sperm or eggs;
- Problems with the, the structure or function of male or female reproductive systems;
- Hormonal; and
- Immune conditions.
The standard medical treatment for infertility is often IVF. For many it is a God-send and for many it has resulted in failure after trying several cycles of IVF and it often results in depression.
Consequently, many women are turning to Complementary and Alternative Medicine for help.
Many integrative medicine doctors and practitioners Complementary and Alternative Medicine will explore MTHFR mutations on fertilisation and methylation cycles. They will also advise on the correct form of B12, Vitamin C and more.
Integrative Medicine doctors will refer their patients to an Acupuncturist. Acupuncture improves the flow of energy and increases the blood flow to the uterus which results in thickening the endometrial lining, and this makes implantation easier. Acupuncture further releases endorphins to relieve stress and improve reproductive hormonal function.It also enhances ovulation through modulating the central and peripheral nervous systems, the neuroendocrine and endocrine systems.
Ayurveda the sister science of yoga and meditation examines the individual body types and how to enhance the various body systems such as the endocrine system to induce the ovaries to ripen and release eggs. As an Ayurvedic practitioner I have used this therapy with much success in Integrative Medicine clinics. Ayurveda utilises mind body therapies which include:
- Yoga and Meditation
- Marma therapy
- Chakra balancing
- Ayurvedic Acupressure
Fertility yoga and meditation
Yoga and meditation therapy will improve the blood flow to the pelvic area which will help strengthen and improve the muscles that support the reproductive organs. Consider the following sequence to improve blood flow to the lower chakras /energy centres:
- Sukashana(Meditation pose)
- Balasana (Child’s pose)
- Malasana (Garland pose)
- Uttanasana (Forward-Bending Pose)
- Tadasana (Mountain pose)
- Anjaneyasana (Lunge pose)
- Dandasana (Staff Pose)
- Baddha Konasana (Bound Angle Pose)
- Janu Sirsasana (Head-to-Knee Forward Bend)
- Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend)
- Upavistha Konasana (Wide Angle Seated Forward)
- Sukashana (Meditation pose)
To improve the chances of success it is highly recommended to consider the integrative medicine approach of a strategic combination of the above therapies utilising conventional medical monitoring procedures to gauge results. This approach will also help improve the chances of successful IVF as Ayurveda, Yoga, Acupuncture will increase uterine blood flow, stop uterine motility, and address depression, anxiety and stress.However, there is one key therapy that will help unlock difficult cases of infertility. See Part 2 of this blog.