In order for conception to occur, a lot of different factors must be favourable: The female’s body must be a capable host, the male must be able to produce viable sperm, and the union of the two must be in perfect balance.
Fertility is the ability of a person to contribute to conception. For a female, it also includes the ability to carry a pregnancy to full-term. Subfertility, or Infertility, is defined as the inability to conceive a child after regularly participating in sexual intercourse, without contraception, after a certain period of time. Most couples are advised to seek assistance after 1 year of trying, if the female partner is younger than 35 years of age OR after 6-8 months of trying, if the female partner is 35 years or older.
Ready for the harsh reality?
When it comes to fertility, Age is NOT just a number.
There is no denying that fertility declines with age in women, beginning at age 30. Most women will be able to conceive a healthy baby, naturally, before the age of 35. After 35, the proportion of women who experience infertility, miscarriage, or aneuploidy in their baby, increases. By age 40, only 40% of those who wish to have a baby will be able to do so. Aging doesn’t mean that hope for parenthood is lost – just that you need to be a bit more resourceful to optimize your chances.
Unfortunately, there are some very common female reproductive disorders that can lead to infertility. In addition to these, adhesions in the ovaries, fallopian tubes, and uterus from prior injuries, trauma, surgery, miscarriages, abortion, or infections, can block blood flow to the reproductive organs, leading to decreased function. Abnormal hormonal balance, inflammation, and restrictions in the surrounding musculature, joints, and ligaments of the spine and pelvis can also contribute to infertility. So what do you do? Couples battling with infertility, particularly due to a pre-existing reproductive condition, need to enhance all other fertility factors in order to create an optimal opportunity for conception to occur, based on the given circumstances. This is best achieved with a combination of diet regulation, supplementation, stress modifications, lifestyle changes, yoga & exercise, manual therapy (including chiropractic and massage), and acupuncture. In fact, research even shows that supporting your fertility through diet, manual therapy, and supplementation significantly increases the success of IVF (In-vitro fertilization) treatment, as well.
A lot of research supports the use of acupuncture and spinal manipulation for fertility. When a vertebral segment is restricted, or not moving properly, this can lead to pain, inflammation, muscle tightness, poor circulation, poor nerve innervation, etc. Nerves that exit the vertebral column in the low back and sacral region include those that supply our reproductive organs. If one of these nerves is affected by a restriction, this can have an impact on your fertility! Chiropractors began to notice a trend in their patients – women who had no children or who were previously diagnosed with amenorrhea or anovulation, were suddenly becoming pregnant after receiving regular spinal manipulation. Research that followed has shown that spinal manipulation can significantly enhance rates of conception within just a couple of months! Furthermore, acupuncture studies have shown that needle insertion into acupoints will initiate signals to the nervous system and endocrine system, stimulating the production and regulation of our reproductive hormones and organs.
Did you know that some foods in your current diet may be acting as a natural contraceptive?
Before we had “The Pill” women would consume certain plant products as a means of natural contraception. Many of these plants and plant derivatives still exist in our diet, and play a role in inhibiting conception in women. But look on the bright side, there are also foods out there that can act as natural promoters of fertility in men and women (if consumed at the right times). The key is to learn which are which! When food isn't an option, supplementation is available. Again, timing is everything. When regulating your diet and using supplements for fertility, it is important to work with a health care provider.
In addition to diet, lifestyle factors such as exercise, sleep, sexual positioning, stress and other psychosocial issues can play a role in your fertility. These will all be considered when developing your customized fertility program.
Your Fertility Program may include the following:
- Menstrual cycle mapping
- Physical musculoskeletal and/or neurological assessment
- Spinal manipulation and/or mobilizations
- Massage therapy and/or myofascial release therapy
- Acupuncture and/or Acupressure
- Diet & Supplementation monitoring and recommendations
- Lifestyle recommendations
- Exercise therapy and recommendations
- Patient fertility education
Your body and mind must be clear of obstructions for conception to occur. Couples need to be free of stress and physical restrictions, have proper flow of blood, energy and hormones. It’s not just about doing the right things, but knowing the right time to do them, and knowing what not to do. You need to understand your body, so you know how to rehabilitate your fertility back to a viable state. It is very important to work with proper health care providers to rehabilitate your fertility.
For more information on our fertility program, please contact Dr. Lisa Caputo at firstname.lastname@example.org or call our clinic directly at: 416-365-1016.