Acupuncture combined with traditional medical care has shown time, and time again to help increase chances of pregnancy and boost fertility.
Acupuncture alone, or acupuncture combined with traditional medical treatment can be very effective. For example, studies have found that doing acupuncture along with the medication clomiphene (aka Clomid), have much greater rates of success than taking clomiphene alone. You can read a prominent study on that here. Another treatment that has shown to have success using acupuncture as an adjunct is IVF. IVF is normally a last resort when it comes to getting a woman pregnant for many reasons – including the fact that it is very expensive, highly invasive, highly time-consuming, and on top of all many women require more than one treatment for success! Acupuncture has been shown to greatly increase your chance of getting pregnant with IVF by as much as 50% or more! Pretty amazing odds.
So how does acupuncture boost fertility and help to enhance your chances of getting pregnant? Read below.
Promotes thickening of endometrium
A crucial step to getting pregnant is the fertilized egg implanting into the side of the uterus – aka the endometrium. Acupuncture promotes blood flow to the endometrium, which helps to promote thickening of the lining (where the egg implants) and also improves the integrity of the lining.
Elevated stress in the body can completely throw off the normal cycle of hormones in women. Acupuncture has shown to decrease stress in the body, promotes calm and relaxation. Low stress is considered a vital component to fertility and getting pregnant.
Increases blood flow to reproductive organs
You can think of acupuncture as a way to ‘wake-up’ your ovaries. Increased blood flow to the reproductive organs helps to nourish developing follicles within the ovaries which is need to have normal ovulation.
Decreases chance of miscarriage
The majority of miscarriages happen before 13 weeks of pregnancy which is why it is generally recommended to continue acupuncture up until at least 13 weeks.
It is also important to note that you will want to see a skilled acupuncturist who specializes in fertility, because there are certain acupuncture points that could possibly correlate with miscarriage.
Hormones are everything when it comes to getting pregnant, and if just one hormone is off, this can cause every other hormone involved with fertility be off as well. The major hormones in particular that acupuncture can help to regulate include thyroid hormones, progesterone, follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), and cortisol (stress hormone as discussed above). If one or more of the above hormones are off, it can throw off your entire cycle and make getting pregnant harder – it’s amazing women even get pregnant with so many hormones that are involved that need to be precisely regulated
More studies need to be done on the efficacy of acupuncture for fertility, but so far the studies that have been done are incredibly promising. I have also seen in practice how acupuncture has helped many women get pregnant either naturally or with fertility treatment, and is something I definitely recommend for women who are trying to get pregnant.
About the author: Sarah-Kate is an Ivy League trained Board-Certified Family Nurse Practitioner with an expertise in women’s health and preventative healthcare. She considers nutrition and exercise to be the basis of well-being and is a strong advocate for daily physical activity and maintaining a healthy diet.