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Fertility Acupuncture 101: Part 1 When to Get Started?

Over the next few posts we will be providing an overview of how acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) can help support your fertility and help you achieve your goal of becoming pregnant. The aim of these blogs is to address the most common questions fertility patients ask when they call to learn about fertility acupuncture.

The first question we will address is “When should I start fertility acupuncture?”

There is both a short and a long answer to this question. The short answer is that there is no wrong time to start acupuncture when you are trying to conceive. Acupuncture is an individualized treatment and a good acupuncturist will always meet you where you are and provide relief for the immediate symptoms of stress, sleeplessness and physical discomfort that can be a part of the medical fertiliity journey. As you know, when you are going through an IUI or IVF cycle, these acute concerns are often the difference between sanity and complete meltdown…so, if you’re wondering whether acupuncture can help you if you start in the middle of a cycle it most certainly can.

The longer answer to this question is that starting acupuncture earlier in a cycle or when you are on a break is optimal. Ideally, we like to see a patient starting from a few weeks to a few months prior to an upcoming Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) cycle. The reason for this is that TCM and acupuncture treatment are cumulative. As we will explore in our next blog, TCM works by seeking to diagnose where an imbalance in lifestyle or physical health might be impeding fertility. Some ways lifestyle can impede a woman’s ability to conceive include hormonal imbalance due to excess stress, over/underweight, poor diet or an underlying condition such as Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS). In addition, the goal of TCM is to improve the “raw materials” of fertility, including the uterine environment, eggs and sperm. Eggs take about 120 days to go through their maturation process and sperm roughly 90. Starting acupuncture treatment before your cycle is an investment in the quality of these two very important “players” in the fertiliity process.

In our next blog we will discuss the kinds of questions your fertility acupuncturist might ask you at your first session. You may be surprised at how these questions, which are so different from ultrasounds and blood tests, can shed light on the root cause of your fertility struggles.

Ready to start? You can click here to schedule your Initial Fertility Acupuncture Consult with one of our specialists. Have questions? Give us a call at 312-321-0004 (Chicago Area) or 301-610-7755 (DC Metro).