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PMDD: Riding the Wave vs. Drowning

Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD) is similar to PMS however it is much more severe. It takes a toll on a person’s emotional state and how they might react to people or situations. This can put a strain on relationships with others and themselves. 

One of my patients is so graciously and bravely willing to share her story about what she experienced prior to finding multiple ways to cope with PMDD. She shares about how these resources, including acupuncture, have helped her live her life a bit more fluidly.   

These are M.C.’s Words: 

“While going through my spousal separation and at the same time starting a business, I experienced an abnormally high amount of stress. Although normally high functioning in my career and life, one week, I found myself increasingly unable to cope. At the worst point, I was playing with my 5 year old son and although I would normally enjoy that, on that morning, I was struck by a sudden sense that my whole life felt hopeless, empty and bleak.

Getting through the day was a struggle between moments of severe depression and debilitating anxiety, and I felt a combination of ashamed, confused, and afraid about what I was experiencing.

I went to the grocery store that evening and felt so depressed when I got home that I went straight to the couch and couldn’t even bring myself to put things in the fridge or freezer. As I fought with myself over it in my mind, I also felt a sense of not wanting or being able to survive another minute if this was what my life was going to be like. 

The next day I got my period and was immediately perfectly fine again, which was a huge relief but also made me realize that my menstrual cycle likely was influencing what I was experiencing.

I went to see my doctor, and was diagnosed with PMDD, a type of PMS affecting about 10% of women that is so severe that it can impair one’s ability to maintain relationships and employment, and often results in suicidal thoughts. I recall him saying that psychology wouldn’t help – I was up against my physiology.

The diagnosis felt devastating. That this state of being was a condition that I would live with forever felt heavy and overwhelming. But getting the diagnosis at 39 years old also gave me a name for and some answers to explain the inconsistent bursts of depression, anxiety, and inability to trust my emotional state. I had experienced these feelings since being a teenager and that had been a significant barrier to me developing healthy confidence and self esteem, and at times, healthy relationships. 

Now knowing what I was dealing with, I started tracking the patterns and did a lot of research and experimenting to figure out how to manage the condition. I found that under stress, the unpredictable hormonal swings I experienced in the 10-14 days before my period were causing me to show up as angry, sullen, emotionally volatile, and mean, and that was not the kind of parent, partner, friend, or person I wanted to be.

I also didn’t want to go on the antidepressants my doctor had described, as the side effects sounded as bad as the condition they were addressing. I saw a naturopath, took many vitamin supplements, started eating better and exercising more frequently, meditated, went for massages and acupuncture, started using an app and journal to track my symptoms, and had conversations with everyone close to me about what I was experiencing. I also made a very intentional effort to reduce stress in my life. 

Acupuncture was one of the most effective interventions in alleviating the severity of the symptoms. I recall my first meeting with Christina, where I was so on edge and upset by my condition, I cried within the first five minutes and felt helpless and hopeless. She was extremely kind and empathetic, and the treatments made a noticeable difference.

After a few months of treatments, along with other lifestyle interventions, things turned a corner. Seven months after my diagnosis, I now feel in control of my PMDD, like I can surf the crashing ocean waves inside rather than getting drawn under and drowning. It’s still very hard to deal with each month and I somewhat dread the week before my period, but I also know what I can do to manage the symptoms and I remind myself on the worst days that it will be over soon and I will feel like myself again.

Having a condition like this is awful, but it has also helped me understand myself and my past experiences better and appreciate the positive experiences in my life more. And being in control of the condition has made me feel more in control of my life, which is refreshingly empowering.” 

As M.C. has stated, she does a multitude of things to manage her PMDD with acupuncture being one of her ways of getting through the hump of it.

Acupuncture has helped other people who suffer from PMDD. One meta-analysis shows that TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) reduces PMDD symptoms by more than 50% (1). 

If you have been diagnosed with PMDD or experience emotional symptoms such as irritability, frustration, sadness, or anxiety leading up to your menstrual cycle our qualified practitioners can help. Contact us today

Resources:

  1. Jang, S. H., Kim, D. I., & Choi, M. S. (2014). Effects and treatment methods of acupuncture and herbal medicine for premenstrual syndrome/premenstrual dysphoric disorder: systematic review. BMC complementary and alternative medicine14, 11. doi:10.1186/1472-6882-14-11

Period Pain: My Story

For those of you struggling with painful periods or other uncomfortable menstrual symptoms, have you ever imagined the possibility of a smooth and easy menstrual cycle – a regular cycle with no pain, no bloating and no premenstrual symptoms? 

One of my mentors used to say:

“A period should be polite, it should come and go with ease and cause no trouble.”

Some of you might find this concept incredulous, and you are not alone. 

I remember back when I first transformed into a woman at the age of fourteen.  I remember when my first periods were arriving, having to leave work because the cramps were so severe that my face was grey. I was unable to stand upright and I was nauseous. 

Thus began many years of missing school and work, waking up in the middle of the night dreaming that a shark was eating my uterus. All of this was accompanied by copious amounts of painkillers. 

Throughout my teens, I visited many doctors and gynaecologists who told me that this immense pain was perfectly normal and that birth control was my best option to control the pain. This was difficult for me, especially since I hadn’t even had an ultrasound or any diagnostic testing.

A study from 2012 reports a staggering prevalence of menstrual pain among young women.  Dysmenorrhea (painful menstruation) is reported by 84% of women, with 43% reporting that the pain is occurring every period.  55% of women need medication to control the pain, 32% of women experience the inability to function normally, and 25% of women need medication as well as absenteeism from daily activities such as work. (1)

It is no wonder, when faced with numbers such as 1 in 4 requiring both medication and absenteeism due to menstrual pain, that it is considered to be a ‘normal’ condition by our medical community. 

Fast forward through many years of awkward and uncomfortable symptoms from the birth control pill, to when I finally discontinued it in my later 20s.  The dysmenorrhea came back with a vengeance and continued to disrupt my life.

Again, this was something that I accepted as normal. Throughout all of my years with this traumatizing monthly condition, I never found anything that could alleviate my pain and was conditioned by society to accept this pain as ‘part of being a woman’.

Finally, I had the blessing to begin my studies at a Traditional Chinese Medicine school nestled in the heart of the Kootenays.  When we first started our gynaecology class, our instructor told us that a woman’s period should be painless. I literally had to excuse myself from the room because the incredulous laughter that was rolling out of my being was a disturbance to the rest of my classmates.  It took me a long time to believe that what has been passed off as ‘normal’ my entire life was unnecessary and indeed even treatable. 

The astonishing knowledge that there is a natural and effective treatment option for dysmenorrhea has the potential to improve many women’s lives.  Not only does Traditional Chinese Medicine have the potential to reduce the intensity and duration of menstrual cramps, but it also can help to regulate irregular cycles, heavy or scanty menstruation, absence of menstruation and any premenstrual symptoms.  

A meta analysis conducted in 2018 included randomized controlled trials comparing acupuncture to no treatment, placebo or medications while measuring menstrual pain intensity and associated symptoms in women with primary dysmenorrhea.  This review suggests that acupuncture has beneficial effects for significant improvement of dysmenorrhea and remains efficacious after a short term follow-up (2). Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Herbal Medicine regulate the hormones, decrease stress, increase blood circulation, regulate the menstrual cycle, reduce pain and regulate inflammation. 

During an intake with a practitioner of Traditional Chinese Medicine, many questions will be asked, and every detail of your health will be taken into consideration.  An individualized treatment plan will be prescribed for you, usually including an acupuncture and herbal medicine protocol. Other lifestyle advice such as diet, exercise and mindfulness might also be incorporated.  Generally speaking, it takes about three months of treatment to affect the cycle of hormones in a lasting way. So while it takes some level of commitment to go through this process, it is well worth the dedication, especially as you watch all of the uncomfortable menstrual issues that you have been told your whole life are normal -resolve. 

Do you have menstrual pain? Join us for our Free Community Clinic Day to ‘Stop Period Poverty and Period Pain’. Receive free lifestyle tips on how to prevent dysmenorrhea and a free community acupuncture and massage treatment in exchange for a menstrual product donation for No Woman Without.

Contact us to register. Space is limited!

References:

  1. Grandi, G., Ferrari, S., Xholli, A., Cannoletta, M., Palma, F., Romani, C., … Cagnacci, A. (2012). Prevalence of menstrual pain in young women: what is dysmenorrhea?. Journal of pain research, 5, 169–174. doi:10.2147/JPR.S30602
  2. Woo, H. L., Ji, H. R., Pak, Y. K., Lee, H., Heo, S. J., Lee, J. M., & Park, K. S. (2018). The efficacy and safety of acupuncture in women with primary dysmenorrhea: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Medicine, 97(23), e11007. doi:10.1097/MD.0000000000011007

FREE Community Clinic Day: Stop Period Poverty & Period Pain

What.

Come to our FREE Community Clinic day to ‘Stop Period Poverty and Period Pain’ !!

Drop in to learn tips on how to prevent often dismissed menstrual symptoms, like cramps and PMS.

and

Receive a free community acupuncture and massage treatment in exchange for a donation of menstrual products (which we will contribute to No Woman Without‘s third annual pad drive this month.)

Why.

When we heard about this month’s third annual No Woman Without.Period campaign to address Period Poverty, and knowing that people are forced to choose between buying food and buying menstrual products, we knew we had to jump in and help!

We see this as an opportunity to de-stigmatize menstruation by getting it out of the closet and educating women about their bodies and their menstrual health.

A recently published study shows that period pain is linked to losing almost nine days of productivity at school and work per year. There needs to be an end to the normalization of women’s pain.

What else.

We are also assembling a limited number of ‘Menstrual Survival Kits’ for sale during the free community clinic day.

The kits will be featuring:
– specially formulated Blood Tonic Bone Broth from popular Edmonton restaurant RGE RD
– an herbal heat pack
– an herbal menstrual survival tea
– acupressure points
plus more tools for menstrual support.

There will be a limited number and first come first served 🙂
All proceeds from Menstrual Survival Kit sales will be donated to No Woman Without.

Where and when.

Whole Family Health Wellness Centre
6523 – 111 St NW
Sunday, February 23rd
12 – 3pm

Space is limited!
Register today!
587-200-5607 or info@wholefamilyhealth.ca

Acupuncture For Stress & Sperm

We all know what a negative toll stress can take on our bodies. But what about when we add a little more stress to the scenario?

For all my TTCvers, that fertility window isn’t always the ‘Let’s jump each other’s bones’ time. It sometimes feels scheduled and can be a stressful time period for both partners. Here’s where Acupuncture comes in.

This is a great time for not only women to come in for acupuncture, but it’s also a great time for men to have treatments as well!

Not only does acupuncture make you feel like putty, it stimulates that all-important parasympathetic nervous system. It helps to reduce cortisol, and improves overall blood flow to the reproductive organs in both men and women. In men, acupuncture helps give sperm an extra boost too.

A 2005 study tested men’s sperm after receiving acupuncture 2x a week for 5 weeks, and guess what?! They found an improvement in sperm quality (1)! Great news for all those men who are not only feeling stressed during that window, but who may also need some extra sperm boost.

If there is an underlying male factor issue or your man is facing high stress levels, acupuncture can help him out!

For more information on how we can support your fertility, contact us for a free 15-minute phone consult or schedule an initial consult today.

References:
1. Pei J et al 2005. Quantitative evaluation of spermatozoa ultrastructure after acupuncture treatment for idiopathic male infertility. Fertility and Sterility 141-7.

I am 1 in 4

October is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month

1 in 4 experience pregnancy loss. Thousands of empty-armed parents grieve the loss of their child in pregnancy, at birth or in infancy per year in Canada.

They often grieve on their own, isolated in silence. Because the cultural & social infrastructure to support them is lost in the stigma of the death of their children. The stigma is rooted in our silence.

It wasn’t until I miscarried … twice … each time after trying to conceive for at least a few years.. words can’t describe the happiness & hope I felt with those + pregnancy tests! My love for baby grew each day & week & month along with my breasts, nausea & fatigue. It wasn’t until I lost both pregnancies in a row, that I learned that everyone I knew had either had a miscarriage or was close to someone who had had a miscarriage.

It wasn’t until I helped my dear friend birth her daughter still, and saw her daughter’s lovingly bathed and dressed still little body.. only for my friend to return home to an empty nursery with empty aching arms but heart full of love and nowhere physical to pour it into. Breasts full of milk & no body to nourish…

It wasn’t until I met my other dear friend on one of her first outings, months after she still-birthed her full term son. We went to her local coffee shop, only to be greeted by the young teenaged barista who had watched her belly grow to term, excitedly asking my friend where her baby was…

It wasn’t until these moments that I touched the immeasurability of this kind of grief. And my heart grows with understanding and love for all who ride these waves of grief & sadness & anger & love.. & more..

Is there a particular moment you remember that could help others to understand the depth of your experience? Maybe if we all feel it together – at least for a moment – we can help you to bear the weight of your heart’s sadness… so you don’t have to carry it all by yourself…

Please contact us if you or someone you know needs support with moving through the loss of still birth, infant loss, recurrent pregnancy loss or infertility.

5 Ways to Manage PCOS Naturally

WHAT IS PCOS?

Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS ) affects 1 in 10 people. It is a common endocrine disorder and one of the leading causes of infertility. It can present with a broad spectrum of possible symptoms, so the medical community formed a panel to come to a consensus.

According to this Rotterdam panel, a PCOS diagnosis is confirmed with the presentation of a minimum of 2 out of the 3 following criteria:

  • Ovulatory dysfunction (which can present as irregular cycles or no cycles at all)

  • Enlarged ovaries with at least 12 follicles each
  • Elevated androgens in your blood-work (which can manifest as excess hair growth on the chin and/or chest as well as acne)


Luckily, PCOS is treatable!

HERE ARE 5 WAYS TO MANAGE PCOS NATURALLY:

1.            DIET:

Insulin resistance, sugar metabolism and weight gain are commonly present with PCOS. A study shows that even 8 weeks of low-starch and low-dairy diet results in weight loss, improved insulin sensitivity and reduced testosterone in people with PCOS.

The following dietary principals help to stabilize blood sugar and decrease inflammation:

– Stick to a carbohydrate – restricted, low- glycemic index foods diet

– Eat regular protein-dense snacks

– Eat plenty of colourful veggies and dark leafy greens

– Combine your fruit with other foods, and avoid eating tropical fruits. Go for berries instead (they have a lower glycemic index)

– Avoid trans-fats and incorporate more healthy fats, like long chain Omega-3 fatty acids found in high quality fish oils or use coconut oil, avocado oil, or extra virgin olive oil

– eliminate inflammatory foods like sugar, dairy, wheat and flour products, processed/ pre-packaged foods and artificial sweeteners from your diet

2.            EXERCISE:

A study shows that structured exercise with three 30-minute stationary bike sessions per week regulates menstruation and improves insulin sensitivity, fertility and androgen levels in people with PCOS.  It has also been shown that exercise improves micro vascular function (blood flow) in the uterus, which is a known cause of implantation failure in those with PCOS.

High intensity interval training has also been shown to improve insulin resistance in women with PCOS, even in the absence of weight loss.

Weight gain is often a presentation of PCOS, but there’s no pressure to become a lean machine to reverse the condition. Even a 5-10% weight loss restores ovulation.

3.            REDUCE ENVIRONMENTAL ENDOCRINE DISRUPTORS

Bisphenol A (BPA) is one of the most common industrial endocrine disruptors found in common household products. It is a significant endocrine disruptor in PCOS and has been found in higher levels in people with PCOS.

BPA can be found in high levels in people with and without PCOS. However, in people with PCOS, BPA causes testosterone levels to increase unlike in those without the condition. The higher the levels of BPA in the blood, the higher the levels of testosterone there is too.

BPA can be found in:
Industrial packaging
Food cans
Plastic bottles
Plastic water pipes
Thermal paper (receipts)
Cosmetics
Healthcare equipment
Children’s toys and clothing

Try to avoid using the following:
Canned food, unless the label says that it’s BPA-free
Plastic, use glass or stainless steel containers instead
Receipts

4.            MINDFULNESS MEDITATION:

People with PCOS have a higher risk of anxiety and depression. This is related to the stressful symptoms of PCOS, associated inflammation in the body and hormone imbalance.

Research shows that a Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction Program significantly reduces stress, depressive and anxiety symptoms, as well as salivary cortisol concentrations while increasing Life Satisfaction and Quality of Life scores in women with PCOS.

5.            ACUPUNCTURE

Acupuncture increases blood flow, regulates inflammation, balances hormones and decreases stress. One study shows that both acupuncture and exercise reduce high levels of testosterone and lead to more regular menstruation in PCOS patients.

Do you or someone you know need help with PCOS? Contact us for a free 15-minute Q & A to find out more about our PCOS Treatment Plan.


Read Kay’s Pregnancy Success story in the face of PCOS.

Pregnancy Success with PCOS: a Journey of Courage & Triumph

A lot of my patients that have PCOS see this diagnosis as a battle, and in a sense it is.  Menstrual cycles are typically irregular and weight, hair growth, and acne can be an issue. You know, all the fun stuff a woman has to deal with, but on an exponentially elevated level. Where do we go from here?

Sometimes there isn’t a whole lot of support to manage this type diagnosis. All we truly know is that our body isn’t functioning quite right and when we are trying to conceive, this just adds to the frustration. Fortunately, with the right tools, a strong willpower to make some lifestyle changes, and finding support and guidance with the right people in our corner, we can manage this confusing and frustrating diagnosis. 

I am honoured to share one of my patient’s personal journeys with PCOS that she is so courageously willing to share…

Kay’s journey with PCOS: 

I was officially diagnosed with PCOS about 9 years ago. Even if this was when I was officially diagnosed, I had known for a long time that something wasn’t right. 

My biggest warning signs were that I had excessive body hair, irregular periods and despite trying everything to lose weight, I couldn’t.

When I was diagnosed, I was told it would be very hard to conceive and that there was not much I could do to help the symptoms. This was a shock to my 21 year-old self.

Busy with a new job in a new province, I didn’t think to question or look into ways to help myself. Fast forward a few years, I’m married and we are wanting to have a baby. I still have all of the symptoms but they have all gotten worse. Trying to conceive while not knowing if my cycle will be 20 days or 96 days is a challenge.

So we tried for over two years and got into the fertility clinic where we did all the testing, followed protocols and were told that we would have a slim chance of success. We took the chance, did a round of medicated IUI and were blessed with our now 1.5 year-old baby boy.

Then the time came that we wanted to try again. However in the year after the birth of our son, I had only had one period. (I wasn’t breastfeeding.) Knowing that the odds were against us and we would need to wait until the fertility clinic had room for us, I mentally prepared myself for another long road. 

While talking to a friend who has her own fertility issues, we decided to try a different approach. That’s when a simple internet search lead me to Whole Family Health and Christina.

At the end of February 2019, I took the chance and attended my first ever acupuncture treatment with the attitude that I have nothing to waste because I need to wait for the fertility clinic to get me in anyways. Well that February day, my life completely changed. I found someone who understood PCOS and how a female body works and genuinely wanted to help me conceive.

We started a regular acupuncture program; by the end of the 3rd month I had my first period in over a year with a positive ovulation. So we continued treatments and the next couple of months produced the same results, until a few weeks ago when the period never arrived but a positive pregnancy test did.

As I am so early in my pregnancy I’m not sure what the future holds, however I do know that I will be continuing acupuncture for probably the rest of my life. My PCOS is responding so positively and my mood and all around health has improved so much in the last 6 months. I truly believe that the natural approach and Christina’s knowledge and dedication has forever changed the way I will battle my PCOS.”

If you are a woman suffering with PCOS, you don’t have to battle this alone, the amazing qualified practitioners at Whole Family Health are happy to support you through your journey with Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine!

Contact us today!

How does Acupuncture Work for Infertility?

What does Acupuncture do to help or improve Fertility?

Acupuncture improves fertility by increasing blood flow. Doppler studies show that stimulation of specific acupuncture points increases circulation in blood vessels.

Treatments also stimulate angiogenesis – which means that they actually encourage new blood vessels to grow.

Acupuncture also helps fertility by regulating inflammation, balancing hormones and decreasing stress.

Studies show that certain acupuncture points decrease stress hormones and block chronic stress neurological pathways.

Where do the needles go?

Are you considering acupuncture for fertility and wondering where the needles go when you receive the treatment? 

The needles can be placed in the abdomen, chest, back, arms, legs, hands, feet, head or ears.

Needles are ultra-fine and hair-thin. Upon insertion, they feel like a mosquito bite at most.

Here are 3 most commonly used acupuncture points located on the leg, abdomen and head (Translation of point names and meanings from ‘Characters of Wisdom by Debra Kaatz):

1. ST36 Zusanli (To Walk in the Great Strength of Stillness)

This point is located just below the knee and is a storehouse for putting things into action, it gives us extra strength when things are not easy and strengthens vitality.

Studies have shown that this point is therapeutic for inflammation, stress, pain inhibition, perfusion/ circulation, parasympathetic activity,gastric function and ART reproductive outcomes.

2. DU20 Baihui (The Meeting in Grand Unity)

This point is located on the top of the head and is where chaos can be restored to unity, bringing tranquillity and calm.

Studies have shown that this point helps with anxiety, insomnia and ART reproductive outcomes.

3. CV4 Guanyuan (Gateway of Origin)

This point is located on the lower abdomen and opens our inner fertile gardens; it is where the goodness and vitality is allowed in, opening our life to warmth and harmony.

Studies have shown that this point helps with pelvic pain, endometriosis, primary dysmenorrhea, depression and anxiety.

How often do I need to have acupuncture done to improve my fertility?

The effects of acupuncture treatments are cumulative and treatment plans differ depending on each case.

The frequency of acupuncture treatments varies from 1 to 3 times per week for 4 to 12 weeks, depending on the recommended protocol.

How many acupuncture sessions will it take to get pregnant? How long does it take?

The aim is a healthy pregnancy, so we want to create the healthiest embryo and uterine lining as possible. This means we need healthy egg, sperm and lining.

It takes about 4-6 weeks to effectively increase the blood flow of the lining.

It takes about 90-100 days for egg and sperm to ripen and mature in the body before they are released for conception. We know that if we optimize the environment that they develop in, we are supporting them to grow to their peak potential.

So ideally, we want to focus on this key 3-month preconception time-frame to optimize egg and sperm quality while also optimizing blood flow in the uterus. This minimum time frame gives you the best chance of success.

What kind of success rate does acupuncture for infertility have?

Success rates are dependent on so many factors, including age and the nature of the diagnosis.

Studies show that acupuncture support for IVF increases the chances of success by 15-30%.

How much does fertility acupuncture cost?

At Whole Family Health, an Initial Consult is 60-90 minutes long and costs $144. Follow-up treatments are 50-60 minutes long and cost $96 each.

Yoga for Fertility

Does Yoga Help Fertility?

Lately I have been coming across many people that are interested in the benefits that yoga may have for them on their fertility journey. From the direct experience of my personal yoga practice, I have noticed positive changes in my own stress levels and emotional well being. So, what are the benefits that a fertility focused yoga practice has you ask? Here are some interesting facts:

A 2015 study looked at the effect yoga had on anxiety and women going through fertility treatments. The researchers found that after taking a 6 week yoga program, anxiety scores of participants were significantly lower in the yoga group than in the control group.

This 2018 study found the full scope of yoga postures, breathing techniques, and meditation to be beneficial in stress management as couples went through assisted reproductive techniques. The same study found yoga was helpful to reduce pain and decrease anxiety and stress in couples going through IVF.

Yoga taps into the parasympathetic nervous system and our “rest and digest” functions. Throughout the yoga practice, the body is able to relax and this allows for a shift in the nervous system that increases circulation throughout the body which is so beneficial in all aspects of health.

Fertility focused yoga emphasizes a slower and more restorative practice that provides the space for the body and mind to connect on a more subtle level. It’s a beautiful combination of body, breath, and mind that will leave you with a deep sense of comfort!

I would love to see you on the mat!

Register now!
For our upcoming 6-week YogaPuncture for Fertility series
Thursdays, Sept 19 – Oct 24
6:15 – 7:15pm
$150

Help for IVF Anxiety

In my own clinical practice, as well as in my own life, I have had the honour to witness acupuncture’s positive effects on anxiety. Nothing beats the feeling of melting into a treatment table and allowing your body to relax under the effects of the needles. All of the whirling thoughts tend to slow down as you feel listened to, cared for and supported. 

Anyone who has been in the vicinity of the life creating processes of IVF know that emotional support can be of huge benefit to the couple undergoing the procedure. For centuries, Traditional Chinese Medicine physicians have observed and recorded how excessive emotions and overthinking can contribute to the progression towards imbalance. What could cause more deeply felt emotions and excessive rumination than the suspense associated with expanding your family through IVF? 

Indeed, previous studies have indicated that 25 percent of women are at risk of clinical distress following an IVF cycle. However, a clinical trial involving over 800 women, aged 18 – 42 and across 16 different IVF clinics, studied how anxiety associated with IVF responds to acupuncture treatment. The study, spanning from 2011 to 2015, showed that acupuncture during an IVF cycle significantly reduced the feeling of anxiety on the day of embryo transfer. (1)

Acupuncturists have a variety of treatment protocols that can help to calm the mind, balance the nervous system and relax the body. Spending time on the treatment table can cultivate your sense of calm and thus help to improve the ease and success of your cycle.

If you are experiencing anxiety associated with your IVF cycle, we can help you. At Whole Family Health, we combine the time tested truths of ancient medicine with cutting edge modern medical knowledge.

If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of our practitioners please give us a call to book in for a free Q & A

Reference: 

1. Smith, Caroline A., et al. “The Effects of Acupuncture on the Secondary Outcomes of Anxiety and Quality of Life for Women Undergoing IVF: A Randomized Controlled Trial.” Acta Obstetricia Et Gynecologica Scandinavica, vol. 98, no. 4, 2019, pp. 460–469., doi:10.1111/ aogs.13528. 

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