Fertility and Acupuncture


Let’s get pokey shall we?
If it weren’t already obvious by my ingestion of disgusting Chinese herbal tonics, I believe in Eastern medicine.  So why haven’t I tried acupuncture before?  My debilitating fear of needles, of course.
But my biological clock has overtaken my irrational phobia with the help of a little scientific research.  It seems in a 2002 study “40%of women receiving acupuncture just before and after an assisted-reproductive therapy, such as IVF, became pregnant; that compared with 26% of patients who got pregnant with assisted-reproductive treatments but who received no acupuncture therapy. ”  (LA Times.)
According to the American Pregnancy Association, acupuncture and herbal medicine can improve ovarian and follicular function and “increase blood flow to the endometrium, helping to facilitate a thick, rich lining.” (APA.)
Now here I am, waiting for my third accupuncture appointment.  What is it like?
Well, the ambiance is similar to that of a massage. Low light, therapy table, relaxing music.  My Doctor/Acupuncturist guides me through a visualization of a color.  First it was green, as in imagining laying on a field of green grass under a canopy of trees filled with green leaves rustling with green energy and mentally harvesting all the energy to fill my heart area. I’m assuming the green is because that’s the color of the heart chakra. In my second session it was orange focused below the belly button and above the pelvic bone.
While she’s walking me through the visualization, she’s placing a needle in various places.  Notably, the left ear and not the right ear because the left ear is connected to the female side. Using a tube to prevent the needles from bending, it feels like a prick or pinch, in a couple of places it is painful initially, and in the rest virtually painless momentary pressure that fades.
What’s left is a sinking heavy feeling of deep relaxation.  In every session, I have fallen asleep at some point.  The needles are left in place for the rest of the session (about 30 minutes or more) and mostly painless when removed.
Some recent studies argue that acupuncture is not as helpful to fertility as originally thought but the number of success stories I have read make me a believer.
A big enough believer that that at least 4 times a month I’m willingly getting poked with needles.

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