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By Jo Riley

Trying to have a baby? Acupuncture is a dynamic therapy that supports your body’s ability to conceive in so many ways. Here’s how:

Balances the endocrine system

An inbuilt hormonal system known as the endocrine system is key to promoting fertility. Hormones are responsible for metabolism, growth and sexual development and function. Hormones are produced by glands within the endocrine system and they work together very intricately to maintain healthy processes. Acupuncture can play an important role in restoring health and harmony to your hormonal systems and promoting fertility. This involves a practitioner arriving at the appropriate traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) diagnosis or pattern; the pattern determines the course of treatment for the individual.

Addresses thyroid function disharmonies

Dysregulation of the thyroid function can impact greatly on reproductive function before, during and after conception. Again, the practitioner will arrive at a TCM diagnosis and formulate a treatment plan accordingly.

Tames your stressĀ response

Stress can disrupt harmonious hormones and acupuncture is greatly beneficial in alleviating the effects of stress: anxiety; insomnia; moodiness; and in many cases high blood pressure; blood sugar irregularities; and weight gain / loss; and again harmonising hormones.

Increases the blood flow to the reproductive organs

Moving blood and qi; balancing yang and nourishing yin. Once the individuals pattern is determined, a treatment plan is made. Acupuncture can be supportive in the case of PCOS, endometriosis, adenomyosis etc.; also in the case of chronic blood deficiency and anaemia, a protocol to nourish and build blood may be applied. In the case of scar tissue in tubes acupuncture is not effective.

Supports IVF

The combination of acupuncture with assisted reproductive treatment (ART) has emerged in recent years as an effective approach for improving pregnancy and live birth rates. The timing of an acupuncture treatment in relation to the menstrual cycle is of great importance. Acupuncture can be supportive pre and post transfer of the embryo; and on the day of embryo transfer.