Woman's Wellspring - Vitality, Fertility & Nurturance

 
“A strong life force can be seen in physical vitality, courage, competent judgment, self-mastery, sexual vigor, and the realization of each person’s unique talents and purpose in life. To maintain a powerful life force, forget yourself, forget about living and dying, and bring your full attention into this moment.” 
― H.E. DaveyJapanese Yoga: The Way of Dynamic Meditation

Whether it be regulating our hormonal balance, gynecological health, deciding to have a baby, a woman's health during pregnancy or assistance with the labour process and settling in to the post natal phase, there's something that acupuncture can offer to Woman in the various phases of her life and cycles. 
Our vitality comes from our sense of abundance and being nurtured; by ourselves, those around us,  and the socioemotional context within which we live. Our life force can too often be eroded or tarnished by too many things - which all tend to come under that ubiquitous banner of stress. 
Acupuncture is its own medicine, it has a unique diagnostic paradigm, it has a measurable positive effect on the body, but it also assists the individual to bring their attention to the moment. In skilled hands acupuncture is a tool for physical, emotional and psychic transformation, shifting patterns and cycles of habit for our elevation, health and vitality.


Fertility

Falling pregnant isn't always as easy as we imagine. For women our menstrual health and moon cycle regularity plays a big part. However other factors such as age, general health, alcohol consumption and stress levels are important to evaluate too.

For women some things to consider include:

Am I ovulating? - To be sure means that you are noticing vaginal secretions and mucus changes, or charting your temperatures. Ovulation testers can be unreliable, so it is best to know exactly using a variety of methods. There are a number of excellent apps available to do this.

Are we timing intercourse properly with ovulation?  Once you ovulate you have a window of about 6-12 hours.

Any history of menstrual irregularity, long term use of the contraceptive pill or PCOS and you might find that falling pregnant could take a little longer.

Is there anything you think might affect the quality of your reproductive capacity such as childhood illnesses or injuries? 

Have you and your partner had your sexual health tests? Speak with your GP or fertility specialist about this if required.

Acupuncture can assist natural fertility for women outcomes by:

regulating moon cycles and ensuring menstrual health is optimal. Remember that it takes about 3 months for the cycle to settle in or establish a new pattern. Depending on your level of health this can take 4 - 6 months to effectively regulate.

Acupuncture can assist natural fertility outcomes for women and men by:

increasing overall health and wellbeing by decreasing stress and supporting your nervous system to integrate the constant environmental, emotional and physical challenges of your day, week, life!

potentially improving the egg and sperm quality and quantity with the use of herbal medicines, nutritional supplementation and specialised acupuncture techniques.

It is important to see a properly qualified acupuncturist and herbalist who has experience in fertility related treatments. 

 

Assisted reproductive Technologies
ART & IVF

The decision to use Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART), whether it is be a fully medicated IVF cycle, a natural IVF or an IUI is a personal and profound one.
Some women find using these technologies to be a physically and emotionally challenging time, as the side effects of medications, the constant interventions and testing requirements can be overwhelming, all consuming and exhausting.

 

Acupuncture is routinely used with IVF treatments for:

Preconception care

It takes about 4 months for the follicle in your ovary to develop into an egg that is mature enough for conception.This means that what you do 3-4 months before your day of egg retrieval will be helpful in influencing the appropriate development of your egg. Factors such as:
Diet - including the reduction or avoidance of alcohol and caffeine
Maintaining an exercise schedule
Stress reduction, proper rest, relaxation and quality sleep
Reduced exposure to toxins and fumes
Increased nutritional supplementation.
All the above are ways that you can influence the vitality and quality of your reproductive capacity.

Post egg retrieval surgery

Sometimes this procedure can be painful and it can take some time for the effects of the puncturing of the ovaries to heal and become less tender. Acupuncture can be very helpful in engaging the body's restorative processes and can reduce pain.

Alleviating the side effects of IVF medications

These include bloating, headaches, emotional stress and anxiety, cramping or abdominal discomfort, as well as insomnia and fatigue.

Pre and/or post embryo transfer treatments 

While recent research has suggested that these treatments make little difference to the outcome of your IVF cycle, Kaitlyn's clinical experience and practice suggests that as long as acupuncture treatments are focused on supporting the patient's constitutional capacity and have the effect of reducing stress and settling the nervous system out of an adrenal overload, acupuncture can be beneficial to the patient's overall experience, can improve the chances of pregnancy and manage the anxiety around conception.


Pregnancy, Birth & Beyond

Pregnancy can be a wonderful time but some common complaints during pregnancy can make you feel less than fabulous.

Acupuncture is safe and effective for a range of conditions during pregnancy including:
colds and flu
swelling of feet and ankles
nausea and morning sickness
stress and anxiety
haemorrhoids
muscle aches and pains
fatigue
constipation

To ensure the best possible labour and birthing experience, it is advised to seek acupuncture from around the 35-36 week of pregnancy. Treatments are given once a week to assist in softening the cervix to ensure easier labouring, as well as encouraging the appropriate hormonal cascades to engage.

Speak to your acupuncturist about what can be done for breech presentations; the use of acupressure and other non pharmaceutical interventions for pain relief during labour; how to avoid long labour times, and partner preparation.  

In addition to hospital antenatal classes, we recommend engaging the services of an independent Child birth educator and doing a Calm birth or Hypno-birthing course.

Labouring and Birthing Outcomes Research shows that being prepared for your labour has a significant impact on reducing the rate of medical interventions during labour, including forceps use, epidural and caesarean section.

It's great that we have the availability and option for medical interventions if and when we need them, however more often than not we don't need them.

Preparation encourages self confidence, reduces feelings of stress and increases a sense of empowerment and the likelihood that you will have a positive birthing experience. It gives you a greater understanding of you and your capacities, which will stay with you thoughout your life as a mother.

Being prepared can include having a birth plan, and having a clear idea about what you want in the birthing suite.

Every birth is unique, and sometimes the best made plans will go astray, but it is good to have a sense of how you would like your experience to unfold, if only so there is time spent considering what is right for you.

Speak to your acupuncturist about what can be done for breech presentations; the use of acupressure and other non pharmaceutical interventions for pain relief during labour; how to avoid long labour times, and partner preparation.  

To ensure the best possible labour and birthing experience, it is advised to seek acupuncture from around the 35-36 week of pregnancy. Treatments are given once or twice a week to assist in softening the cervix to ensure easier labouring, as well as encouraging the appropriate hormonal cascades to engage, calm the nerves and prepare the mind.

Doula services and Independent Childbirth Education

Doula services are important when considering your birthing options. For more information on Doula services, what they provide, your investment and why it is important to consider contact the Australian Doula College