Acupuncture to help fertility and IVF support
It can be a very stressful time if you are struggling to become pregnant or are undergoing assisted conception treatments.
A couple’s fertility depends on many factors, such as constitution, age, lifestyle, diet and stress levels.
If there are no diagnosed reasons for infertility (male or female), having acupuncture can help to strengthen both partner’s constitutions and balance the body’s systems and together with dietary advice and life style changes can help optimize your chances of becoming pregnant and having a healthy baby.
There are many research studies that suggest having acupuncture may help in various areas relating to fertility, conception and pregnancy and that it can be a positive and beneficial treatment to enhance the chances of natural conception or to support the process of assisted conception.
I have been a contributor to Pregnancy and Birth magazine and to the National Childbirth Trust publications (NCT) and was a member of The Acupuncture for Childbirth Team (ACT) Oxfordshire.
Acupuncture treatment can benefit fertility outcomes by:
- Regulating menstrual cycle
- Counteracting polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS)
- Lowering stress hormones and regulating FSH
- Improving blood flow to the pelvic area, ovaries and uterus.
- Reducing contractions of the uterus
- Helping to improve sperm health
- Regulating immune system
IVF and assisted conception
Acupuncture can be used as a support for all stages of IUI, IVF, FET and ICSI treatments.
Having treatment can help with medication side effects such as nausea, fatigue and headaches and can help to reduce stress and anxiety.
A recent high level, systematic, review carried out by Zhang et al (2018) and published in the European Journal of Integrative Medicine found that acupuncture significantly improved birth rate.
Scientific studies have shown that acupuncture treatment supports fertility and helps to increase your chances of pregnancy by:
- Regulating fertility hormones
- Increasing blood flow to the reproductive organs
- Improving the thickness of the endometrial lining
- Improve embryo quality and egg production
- Improve sperm quality (sperm count, morphology and motility)
- Enhancing luteal function
- Regulating follicle stimulation hormone (FSH)
- Normalising cortisol and prolactin levels on IVF medication days
- Promoting embryo implantation
- Strengthen immune system
- Helps to reduce stress and anxiety levels