Acupuncture is one treatment for infertility. It involves dealing with the body in a holistic way rather than isolating one organ. Acupuncture for fertility creates a relationship between the organ and its energy channels, or meridians, and targets the cause of the inability to conceive. Additionally, acupuncture treatments help to regulate hormones, increase blood flow, alleviate pain and strengthen the body’s immune system.
Acupuncture for fertility works by the use of special acupuncture needles. Thin, sterile needles are inserted into the body at acupuncture points. This practice opens the meridians, allowing the body to respond naturally to unblocked bodily, mental and emotional processes. Chinese acupuncture works by targeting the sources of disturbance of the flow of qi, the body’s energy that maintains overall health. Eliminating these disturbances results in better health and fertility.
Acupuncture for fertility assists in the maturation of the eggs, and the needles are inserted in designated pathways to restore the body’s natural balance and aid in conception. Acupuncture can help regulate a woman’s cycle and assist in ovulation. It also lines the uterus for a greater likelihood of implantation. In men, acupuncture can stimulate sperm production.
An acupuncture clinic should be visited to determine the best type of infertility acupuncture, and acupuncture practitioners should be consulted. The acupuncturist may recommend a combination treatment of acupuncture for fertility and herbal medicine. Benefits of this combination include stronger ovaries and improved follicular functions.
Traditional acupuncture also works for in vitro fertilization, insemination and a donor-egg transfer. The best time to use acupuncture for fertility is three to four months before these procedures take place. Acupuncture treatments are suggested both before and after the embryo transfer. They can also help prevent miscarriages, which most often occur within the first twelve weeks of pregnancy, so acupuncture use during this time is recommended.
Needles should not be inserted in stomach or pelvic regions after the insemination or transfer. After the patient has become pregnant, additional spots to avoid include the gallbladder, stomach, spleen, large intestine and bladder. Acupuncture for fertility is a safe procedure, but the risk of miscarriage becomes greater when such spots are punctured after pregnancy occurs.
Most states grant licenses to acupuncturists, who become recognized fertility doctors. The applicant must attend an established acupuncture school and complete additional training, such as a fellowship, internship or residency. He or she must then submit an application and pay a fee to become a licensed acupuncturist.