Fertility: Nourishing the Seeds of Well-being
The ways that Chinese Medicine works with fertility are rooted in seeing the patient as a whole person, not just a set of symptoms and conditions. The success of fertility support needs to consider the body as a whole system to provide the guidance that each individual needs for their specific fertile path. Chinese Medicine approaches fertility issues with a lens that observes the body, mind, emotions and one’s spirit. These aspects are all considered as part of one’s constitutional health, and from which an appropriate treatment strategy can be determined.
Fertility issues can range from simple to complex and everything in between. One of my mentors, Raven Lang, OMD said to me, “those patients coming in for help with fertility need to become gardeners first.” What I interpreted from her words was that the seeds of life must be well nourished, protected, fed and watered, and the grounds in which they are planted must be warm, mineral rich and tended to regularly. Gardeners are very familiar with this caretaking. Fertility support involves a caretaking as well. This caretaking is of the body, mind, and emotions. Certainly for some, gardening can be an excellent teacher of many life lessons. The caretaking of fertility support involves nourishing the body with a healthy diet, protecting the body from overwork, too much activity or exercise. Additionally, the body needs adequate rest, exercise, downtime and a tending to the emotions that arise along the way to keep stress manageable.
The single most important and successful technique I bring to fertility work is to encourage the mind and body to relax, to leave the “fight, flight” pattern that the nervous system, muscles, blood flow and digestion may be locked into, and to experience a relaxed state close to stillness. This may take practice but it is truly the most valuable health practice a patient can leave my treatment room having experienced. It will lend itself well to nourishing pelvic blood flow, follicular development, increased sperm counts, decreased sperm abnormalities, regulation of hormones, balancing emotions, encouraging implantation, and ultimately supporting the journey of bringing a baby to term, the labor and the birth itself.
Make Chinese Medicine a part of your personal fertile path. With the support of acupuncture, herbs, and deep relaxation, experience improved fertility results and most importantly, discover ways to truly nourish your well being. As humans and as parents we can all benefit from learning to be present for the caretaking of our own health. The healthy life choices and changes we are able to make are essentially sewing seeds that we will reap both short and long term health benefits from for years to come.