What is acupuncture?
The positive effect of Acupuncture on conception and fertility can no longer be ignored. Acupuncture has been practiced by the Chinese for hundreds of years and remains one of the best natural ways to improve ovulation, fertility and conception.
Nowadays, acupuncture treatments are used to help prepare the body for conception, providing the best environment for the egg, sperm and thus contributing to successful implantation.
Acupuncture improves pregnancy rates and increases response to fertility medication. It relaxes and calms the patient during the treatment, improving blood flow in the uterus and ovaries, and helps to reduce side effects.
Acupuncture can be used to treat any type of female or male fertility problem.
What to expect during a session?
Acupuncture is performed by inserting fine, sterile needles into carefully selected spots which correspond to the Traditional Chinese Medicine theories of meridians that run through the body. Patients may feel a light tingling sensation throughout the entire body.
Difference between acupuncture and acupressure
Acupuncture and acupressure use the same pressure points and meridians; however acupuncture employs needles, while acupressure uses gentle to firm finger pressure.
Auricular acupuncture is a special treatment that only treats specific points on the ear (auricula).
Normal acupuncture needles, ear seeds (magnetic or herbal seeds on a small piece of adhesive tape) or ear tacks (very small needles on adhesive tape) are used to stimulate these pressure points. Normal acupuncture needles are removed after treatment, whereas ear seeds or ear tacks are removed after several days or weeks.
Auricular acupuncture treats specific points to reduce sympathetic nerve activity, balance hormone levels, stimulate ovulation, relax the uterus and optimize endometrial receptivity.
It can be used as a standalone treatment at any stage of an IVF cycle.
Recommended schedule for IVF cycle
- Before egg retrieval: 2-3 sessions to regulate plasma levels of fertility hormones and maturating eggs.
- After egg retrieval: 1 session on the afternoon of egg retrieval to relive bloating, pain and potential side effects of ovarian stimulation.
- Before sperm collection: 2 sessions before sperm collection to raise sperm count and motility.
- Morning of embryo transfer: 1 session to relax the uterus, increase blood flow and to promote overall relaxation.
- Afternoon of embryo transfer: 1 session immediately after transfer to promote implantation and balance hormone levels.
All these phases can be done by acupuncture or acupressure. Acupuncture treatments are performed in a soothing and inviting environment at the clinic.