Infertility & Traditional Chinese Medicine
The Western Medical system does have a lot to offer when faced with the issues of fertility, but what happens when nothing is wrong? If endometriosis is present, a Fallopian tube is blocked, or if a man's sperm has mobility issues than there is always insemination treatments. But what happens when all the tests come back and you are a perfectly healthy couple that still can't get pregnant? Then they would normally make you wait for over a year before they will even consider treating you for fertility issues. In Traditional Chinese Medicine there is no better time to start your fertility treatments than right now!
Here's a list of my Top 5 Infertility Conditions according to Traditional Chinese Medicine that could hinder your chances of getting pregnant and how Acupuncture and Herbs can potentially help.
1. The Uterus is Too Cold
aka Kidney Yang Deficiency. This is where the uterus doesn't have the right basal cell temperature and the body starts to expel all fluids. An egg needs a nice warm environment to implant in the uterus. The cold may cause a white vaginal discharge, which may cause a fertile egg to be excreted.
Symptoms: Prolonged menstrual cycles, the period could be either scanty (light) or heavy, backaches, dizziness, feeling cold, depression, frequent urination.
Treatment: To tonify and warm the Kidney Yang, stroke up the fire of the gate of life.
Acupuncture: Kid13, Kid3, BL23, REN4,
Herbs: Yu Lin Zhu "Fertility Pearl" formula.
2. A Poor Digestion is Producing Phlegm
aka Spleen & Kidney Yang Deficiency. Do you constantly feel bloated after eating? Do you feel nausea in the morning? Than maybe you have a poor diet that is causing phlegm. When the stomach and spleen don't have enough energy to process the food or there is an allergy to a particular food such as dairy then phlegm is produced which can block the Fallopian tubes.
Symptoms: prolonged menstruation, heavy feeling, bachacke, dizziness, feeling cold, depression, worry, bloating, loose stools, excessive vaginal discharge that's white, swelling and pain in the breasts.
Treatment: Improve diet, clear phlegm, warm kidneys
Acupuncture: Sp6, Kid3, ST36, ST40, KID13
Herbs: Si Miao San "Four Wonderful" Powder
3. There is Too Much Heat
aka Liver & Kidney Yin Deficiency. This is where the body is producing too much heat, which could be considered night sweats or hot flashes. This heats up the cells and the body naturally begins to sweat to cool down. With this heat the environment is too hostile for the egg and the body begins to purge due to the heat.
Symptoms: Long term infertility, periods are early, scanty, with light colored blood, five palm heat, night sweating, dizziness, tinnitus, mental restlessness. Tongue dry no coat or red.
Treatment: Nourish the Kidney and Liver Yin and Essence
Acupuncture: Liv3, Kid3, Kid13, Sp6, Lu7, Kid6
Herbs: Yang Jing Zhong Yu Tang "Nourishing the Essence and Growing Jade" formula
4. Emotional Stress
aka Liver Qi Stagnation. There may be a lot of frustration and anger behind not getting pregnant right away and this can begin to block our energy. If the Qi (energy) is not flowing properly it won't supplement the proper organs that are needed to produce an egg. It can also restrict our blood flow and cause irregular periods.
Symptoms: Irregular periods, pre-menstrual tension, painful periods, breast tenderness, irritability. Tongue has red sides.
Treatment: Move Qi, eliminate stagnation, pacify the Liver regulate the periods
Acupuncture: Liv3, GB34, SJ6, PC6, REN6
Herbs: Xiao Yao San
5. Improper Blood Circulation
aka Blood Stasis. This is when the blood is not circulating properly. Yes our blood flow is always moving yet it can become restricted and less in certain areas. A great example of this is areas of trauma where there may be scar tissue that blocks the blood flow. Overworking, improper diet, and many other factors can contribute to a lack of blood flow, which is very important to nourish the uterus and the fertilized egg.
Symptoms: Irregular and painful periods, dark blood with clots, irritability, mental restlessness, abdominal pain. Tongue is purple.
Treatment: Invigorate the blood, eliminate stasis, pacify the liver and the penetrating vessel, regulate periods.
Acupuncture: Liv3, GB34, SP6, PC6, SP4
Herbs: Woman's Precious Formula
There are so many other herbs to try as well that are not in specific formulas such as a raspberry leaf or nettle tea that helps to prepare the uterus for a fertilized egg. Dang gui "Angelica" helps the blood flow, and can regulate periods. Also, they say as soon as soon as you relax it usually happens, this is because mental stress can block our energy, so find a way to balance your emotions from the frustration of trying and destress. Easier said than done I know, but it can all be possible!
To learn more about your fertility visit your local Traditional Chinese Medicine Doctor today, to start your full assessment. Thanks for reading!
References were from the book Obstetrics and Gynecology in Chinese Medicine by Giovanni Maciocia.