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Whole Person Fertility Care Guide

Exciting announcement!

We are collaborating with Alberta Reproductive Centre (ARC) to offer Whole Person CARE Guidance.

At ARC, they understand the importance of personalized and comprehensive support throughout the emotional and medical process of your fertility journey.

That is why we have teamed up with them to offer fertility care including the following services to all ARC patients.

Introducing WFH’s Alda Ngo, the ARC Whole Person CARE (Coordinator and Reproductive Education) Guide: your Compassionate Coordinator on the Path to Parenthood at ARC.

Embarking on the journey to parenthood can be both exciting and challenging. At ARC, they understand that fertility care is not just a medical process; it is also deeply personal and emotional. That is why they are proud to introduce a dedicated Whole Person CARE Guide, a compassionate coordinator committed to supporting you every step of the way.

Together, ARC and WFH recognize that growing your family is a profoundly meaningful human experience. We are also aware that trying to create a healthy pregnancy can bring up challenging thoughts & emotions, as well as a sense of loss of control.

We want to nurture your sense of agency throughout the process, because we see that you should be in charge of your fertility journey.

Your Personal Advocate:

As your personal advocate and liaison at ARC, Alda brings a wealth of experience and a genuine commitment to holistic fertility care. She will ensure that your journey to parenthood is physically supported and emotionally empowered.

Alda is not just a guide; she is your trusted advocate throughout your fertility journey.

Comprehensive Support Tailored to Your Needs:

The Whole Person CARE Guide goes beyond the traditional role. Alda will help you identify your fertility wellness goals as well as explore & navigate all the additional care options that are available to you.  

Tailored Key Services offered by our Whole Person CARE Guide at ARC:

  1. Personalized Care Plan: She will work with you to create a personalized fertility plan that addresses all aspects of your unique fertility wellness needs & goals.
  2. Information & Education: She will provide clear information about fertility treatments, procedures, and potential challenges, to ensure you are well-informed and empowered to make confident decisions.
  3. Wellness Integration: She will provide you with information about curated supportive service options that are accessible to you. For example: counselling, acupuncture, Registered Dietitian, support groups, mindfulness, massage & yoga.
  4. Coordination of Care: She will serve as a liaison between you and your holistic medical team, streamlining communication and ensuring a seamless experience throughout your fertility treatment process.
  5. Empowering Emotional Support: She will offer a compassionate ear, ensuring you feel heard and supported, while helping you navigate your treatment plan options to create a positive experience.

How to Book

If you are a patient at ARC, please call the front desk at (587) 442-0461 to book a FREE appointment with your Whole Person CARE Guide.

Fee Increase

Notice of Fee Increase

Our commitment is to provide you with the highest quality of acupuncture, herbal, massage and yoga therapy available. This includes keeping up to date with the most recent research regarding therapeutic techniques & interventions, and making them available to you.

Staying current with effective techniques and interventions also means keeping up with market demands and standard pricing. In an effort to keep our current rates in line with what is widely considered to be fair market value, we will be making an adjustment to our fee schedule.

Effective November 27th, 2023, regular appointment times will be billed as listed below.

We understand that your resources are both limited and hard earned. As such, we respect the investment you are making in yourself and your loved ones, and remain committed to keeping your treatment sessions both productive and cost-effective.

If you have any questions about this fee increase, or would like further information, please feel free to contact us to discuss your concerns with us.

Sincerely,

The Whole Family Health Team

Service Fees

effective Monday, November 27th, 2023

Free 15-minute phone / video consult

*
Initial General Acupuncture (60-90 mins) $160
Follow-up General Acupuncture (50-60 mins)  $110
+ Herbal prescription fee (when applicable) $30 + GST

*

Initial Fertility Acupuncture  (60-90 mins) $160
Follow-up Fertility Acupuncture  (50-60 mins)  $110
+ Herbal prescription fee (when applicable) $30 + GST

*

On-Site Pre & Post Embryo Transfer Day Acupuncture (at Alberta Reproductive Centre) $210

*

Initial Paediatric Acupuncture (60 mins) $110
Follow-up Paediatric Acupuncture (30 mins) $70
+ Herbal prescription fee (when applicable) $30 + GST

*

Integrated Acupuncture & Yoga (60 mins) $135
Integrated Acupuncture & Yoga (75 mins) $150

*

Personalized One-on-one Katonah Yoga (60 mins) $110 + GST

*

Initial Herbal Consultation (50-60m) $120 + GST
Follow-up Herbal Consultation (30m) $65 + GST
Herbal prescription fee is included in herbal consultation fees

*

Massage Therapy (60 mins) $110 + GST
Massage Therapy (75 mins) $130 + GST
Massage Therapy (90 mins) $155 + GST

*

Online Nutritional Consultation (60 mins)  $155 + GST

*

E-HEALTH SERVICES:
Herbal prescription fees are included in all following consultation fees (when applicable)

Initial General Lifestyle/ Chinese Medicine Consultation
(60 mins) $160 + GST

Follow-up General Lifestyle/ Chinese Medicine Consultation
(30 mins) $110 + GST)

Initial Fertility Lifestyle/ Chinese Medicine Consultation
(60 mins) $160 + GST

Follow-up Fertility Lifestyle/ Chinese Medicine Consultation
(30 mins) $110 + GST

Low Cortisol Levels and Stress Adaptation

Cortisol and Stress

Many of us have heard that having high cortisol levels can be damaging to our health, but what about having low cortisol levels? Studies show that low cortisol levels, or hypocorticolism, can be linked to long term exposure to stress.

During stress, the body adapts by increasing levels of cortisol to push the body to respond to danger (whether the danger is real or apparent). But if the stress response persists (like in the case of chronic stress), these elevated cortisol levels are unable to fall back within normal range & the body’s cortisol baseline level changes.

Chronic Stress and Hypocorticolism

After prolonged time of elevated cortisol levels, there is a fail-safe mechanism in the midbrain that tries to rebalance the hormone levels. For example, the amygdala and hippocampus can become less responsive, thus lowering levels of cortisol in the body. This negative feedback pattern continues and eventually the body can become less responsive to stress. This might sound good, but any long term imbalance can cause more issues down the road.

The body’s stress response is important & cortisol is designed to protect the body from danger and invasion. So when cortisol levels are chronically low, the body can become less responsive to inflammation and allergies.

Cortisol, Inflammation & Adaptability

Research has linked inflammation to higher levels of heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, and arthritis as well as symptoms like fatigue, stress intolerance, and low blood sugar. Those living with hypocorticolism are often tired, might be intolerant to exercise, overweight, crave sweet and salty flavours, and commonly experience anxiety, insomnia, and depression.

Overall, having chronically low cortisol levels reduces the ability to adapt to changes and stressors in life. Finding ways to better manage stress through meditation and yoga, acupuncture, balanced diet, and moderate exercise can help bring the stress response back into balance.

Contact us for a free 15-minute consultation call to find out more about how we can help you manage stress and balance hormones.

Reference: PMID: 15950390

Practice Yoga with Friends

Summertime is ideal to practice communally. It is a time to get out and spend time with others, teaching and learning from each other through observation and insight. Summertime is joyful and uplifting! This is the polar opposite of winter, which is interpersonal and reflective.

Some postures to incorporate into a summer practice are dynamic movements, standing postures, and pranayama (breathing exercises) to lighten up the heart.

Summertime can bring about bitterness emotionally if one does not allow heat to come in and flow out of the body. Any extra heat in the body has a cascading effect on sleep, digestion, and mood. Using techniques to flush out excess heat will benefit during the summer months, and also prepare the body for autumn.

Contact us for a free 15-minute consultation call to find out more about how we can support you throughout every season with individualized one-on-one yoga.

What Is Katonah Yoga?

What is Katonah Yoga

Katonah Yoga is a formal technique that informs and reforms your yoga practice.

It’s about listening to the body through alignment & measures.

It is a specially designed technique that provides information and insight to your yoga
practice. It focuses on alignment and measures to ensure that you are working through formalized
movement and not falling back into habits that can lead to imbalances in the body.

The reason for moving away from a “feelings” based practice is to get out of your own way. Emotions are wonderful tools to guide and process life’s experiences, but can be biased and full of judgement. By shifting the focus onto the measures and fits within the body, knowing that the body cannot lie, one is better able to access information that is useful and measurable.

The 3 Principles of Katonah Yoga Technique

The Katonah Yoga technique revolves around three principles: all polarities are mediated by trinity; the universe has intelligence implied through pattern; and by virtue of repetition there is potential for
insight.

1. Polarity

First, polarities lie in all worldly things, and the beauty of polarity is when you put yourself in the
center there lies the opportunity to mediate and modulate your experiences.

2. Pattern

Second, pattern provides information about habits and tendencies to lean on strengths, while overlooking weaknesses.

Understanding pattern gives power to the practitioner because the Universe runs on pattern through
seasons, moon cycles, tides, and so much more. By understanding patterns, one can better learn how to align with Universal intelligence and become a more well-rounded human.

3. Practice & Repetition

Finally, the practice of yoga is just that: a practice. It brings about learning to manipulate time by repeating techniques to eventually master one’s own domain. Practice doesn’t make perfect, but it makes sense. It guides the practitioner to continue to explore the Self and unravel any narrative threads that no longer serve, thus giving space to rewrite one’s story.

Katonah Yoga Instructor

Working with a Katonah Yoga instructor will provide outside information to help guide your yoga
practice. The instructor can observe where you like to go and where you don’t, and can reorient your
yoga practice with verbal cues and hands-on adjustments.

Many props are also used to help support the postures, provide better framework, and create good boundaries.

I love to incorporate one-on-one individualized Katonah Yoga practice into sessions. Contact us to book a combined yoga and acupuncture session or a free 15-minute discovery call if you have any questions about it!

Whole Person Fertility Care

When it comes to fertility treatment, the emphasis is often on the physical aspects of the process. But we see the Whole You and we realize that your emotional and mental well-being should not be overlooked.

Did you know that research shows the psychological impact of fertility struggles are similar to those associated with conditions like cancer and IVF?

We know that compassionate care & support can make all the difference – helping to create a more positive experience with better outcomes.

A huge multinational study reports that supportive & mental health service offerings have significant positive impacts on achieving pregnancy, because folks actually continue on their fertility treatment journey.

Our Whole Person Fertility Care plans are designed to reduce stress & calm the nervous system while also addressing specific fertility concerns.

We understand that every person’s journey is unique & we’re committed to providing individualized Whole Person Fertility Care that meets the heart of your specific situation.

We want to get to know you, understand your unique circumstances & develop a customized treatment plan for your individual needs.

We aim to be trauma-informed & to build relationships to create a safe, supportive & non-judgmental space for open communication.

We’re here for you & to meet you where you’re at.

In addition to acupuncture and herbs, we offer mindfulness programs, individualized yoga, nutrition, massage & other resources that help you navigate your pathway to parenthood.

We are here to walk every step of the way with you & we’re so honoured to be part of your journey!

Contact us to set up a free 15-minute Connection Call.

One of our fertility experts would love to connect to hear your story & explore how we can support you 💚

References:
PMID: 8142988
PMID: 34756644

beautiful photo from @nushu 

Acupressure For Childbirth

By applying pressure to specific points on the body, it can help to reduce pain and promote relaxation, allowing the birthing parent to focus on the experience of giving birth.

Studies have shown that acupressure can be an effective method for reducing pain during labor and childbirth.

Here are some acupressure points that can offer support during childbirth:

YONG QUAN – Burst of Vibrant Spring Water

Located on the bottom of the foot, Yong Quan is the lowest and most grounding point on the body. This point has a very relaxing and calming effect. It is effective when there are feelings of panic in labour, and is particularly useful during transition.

“This [point] gives our energy strength, a forward thrust and fresh vision. When we learn to tap into this spring it gives us gifts of knowledge and tranquility. By finding this source within we can find our own wisdom and creativity that can refresh our vision so life can flow with power, balance, purity and without fear. In this vibrant spring water we can be bathed in rejuvenating, refreshing and cleansing pure waters.”

NEI GUAN – Inner Gate

Located three of your finger widths above the transverse crease of the inner wrist, directly between the two tendons. It is useful for feelings of nausea as well as vomiting. It is also a very calming point and is helpful for anxiety.

“It can regulate our fire element by giving it warmth when it is cold or taking off a log or two when it is raging out of control and there is hysteria or anxiety. It is like putting a warm caring hand on the heart giving it the love it needs to feel secure. This inner warmth allows the gateway to be opened so we are once again balanced and can give warmth and love to our relationships. It can also give strength to the gateway so the difficulties in life can be handled better and be better protected. ”

It’s important to work with a qualified practitioner who is trained in acupressure to learn the techniques and acupoint locations for effective intervention.

Free Online Acupressure for Labour Support Workshop

Calling all expecting parents! If you’re looking for a natural and gentle approach to managing pain and discomfort during labor and childbirth, join us for our online acupressure event on February 26th 1-2:30PM.

On February 26th, our Registered Acupuncturist Obstetrics Specialists will teach you some helpful acupressure points that can help reduce pain, promote relaxation, and increase feelings of well-being during childbirth. They will guide you through this process, answer any questions you may have, and make sure that you are comfortable with techniques moving forward.

Whether you’re planning a hospital birth or a home birth, acupressure can be a wonderful tool to have in your birthing toolbox. Don’t miss out on this opportunity!

To register for the event and receive more information, please contact:
Email: info@wholefamilyhealth.ca
Phone: 780.756.7736.

We can’t wait to see you there!

References

PMID: 21735441

Excerpts From
Characters of Wisdom – Taoist Tales of the Acupuncture Points
Kaatz, Debra

Cancer, Fertility Preservation & Acupuncture

February 4th is World Cancer Day and it’s an opportunity to raise awareness about cancer and the impact it has on individuals, families, and communities around the world.

Cancer & Fertility Preservation

One of the lesser-known impacts of cancer is the effect it can have on fertility. Many cancer treatments, including chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery, can cause infertility and make it difficult for individuals to start a family after their cancer journey is over.

Fertility preservation is the process of preserving a person’s ability to have biological children before undergoing cancer treatment. It can include methods such as cryopreservation (freezing) of sperm, eggs, or embryos, ovarian tissue freezing, and gonadal shielding during radiation therapy. This allows cancer patients to have the option of having biological children in the future, even if their fertility is affected by the cancer treatment.

Fertility preservation is an important option for cancer patients of reproductive age and should be discussed with healthcare providers before treatment. This gives patients the option of having biological children in the future, even if their fertility is affected by cancer treatment.

When facing a cancer diagnosis, one of the concerns that may arise is how the treatment may affect fertility. Fertility preservation is the process of preserving a person’s ability to have biological children before undergoing cancer treatment. Here is an overview of a few methods that could be an option to preserve fertility.

Cryopreservation

Cryopreservation involves freezing sperm, eggs, or embryos for future use. This method is a good option for individuals who have not yet started a family and want to preserve their fertility before undergoing cancer treatment.

Ovarian tissue freezing

Ovarian tissue freezing is a method where a piece of ovarian tissue is removed, frozen, and stored for later use. This method is usually used for women who have not yet reached menopause. The tissue can later be transplanted back into the patient’s body to restore ovarian function and fertility.

Gonadal shielding

Gonadal shielding is a method where a shield is placed over the ovaries during radiation therapy to protect them from radiation exposure. This method is usually used for individuals who are undergoing radiation therapy to the pelvic area.

Ovarian suppression

This method involves the use of medication to temporarily suppress the ovaries from ovulating before cancer treatment. This method is usually used for individuals who are undergoing chemotherapy and help to protect the ovaries from the harmful effects of cancer treatment.

Diet

Making certain changes to your diet can help preserve fertility. Eating a diet rich in antioxidants, omega-3 fatty acids, and vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins E and C, may help protect eggs and sperm from damage.

It’s important to note that not all cancer patients are candidates for fertility preservation, and the decision to pursue it should be made on an individual basis, taking into account the type of cancer, stage of cancer, treatment plan, and patient preferences. It’s important to consult with a healthcare professional as soon as possible to evaluate your options, and make an informed decision based on your personal circumstances.

Cancer & Acupuncture

In a cancer diagnosis, it can be difficult to navigate the physical and emotional aspects of treatment. However, acupuncture can be a valuable tool to help support cancer patients through their journey. Acupuncture has been found to be safe and effective in improving overall health and well-being, and can also be used to support fertility preservation.

Acupuncture has been found to improve ovarian function and increase blood flow to the ovaries, which can be beneficial for patients undergoing ovarian tissue freezing or egg freezing. A study published in the Journal of Assisted Reproduction and Genetics found that “acupuncture can improve ovarian function and increase blood flow to the ovaries” (Siterman, et al., 2017).

Acupuncture can also help to reduce the side effects of cancer treatment, such as nausea, fatigue, and stress. A study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology found that “acupuncture can reduce the side effects of chemotherapy” (Smith, et al., 2016). This can be important for cancer patients undergoing fertility preservation, as the side effects of treatment can make it a difficult process to go through.

Acupuncture can also help to improve overall health and well-being, which can be important for cancer patients undergoing fertility preservation. A study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that “acupuncture can improve overall health and well-being in cancer patients” (Smith, et al., 2016).

Fertility preservation is an important option for cancer patients of reproductive age. Acupuncture can improve ovarian function and blood flow to the ovaries, reduce the side effects of cancer treatment, and improve overall health and well-being. It’s always recommended to work closely with your healthcare provider to determine the best integrative treatment approach for each individual.

To find out more about how we can support you through cancer treatment, schedule a free 15-minute Q&A consultation with one of our acupuncture specialists.

References

PMID: 28482596
PMID: 26887135
PMID: 26887135

Beautiful photo: @yaseminvollmond

COVID POLICY UPDATE

MASKS

Masks are now optional in the clinic.

Please feel free to let your pracitioner know if you prefer that they wear a mask.

We are more than happy to accommodate!

WHAT IF YOU HAVE SYMPTOMS?

If you have new symptoms and/or don’t feel well enough to come in to the clinic, please let us know and we can reschedule your appointment.

If you have symptoms but feel well enough to come in to the clinic, please wear a mask during your appointment. We look forward to seeing you!

** last updated April 14, 2023

COVID Update – Mask Requirement

Dear friends,


We are aware that the City of Edmonton Bylaw has been lifted and as a healthcare setting –

we will continue to require masks in the clinic.


As a healthcare setting, we will keep maintaining a safe environment for our vulnerable community members. 


We will also continue to follow our current COVID guidelines during this time, including:

  • COVID screening for symptoms & maintenance of provincial isolation requirements
  • Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting 
  • Proactive hand hygiene 

Thank you so much for your continued support with protecting our community!


With big love from all of us at Whole Family Health 

Image: https://www.instagram.com/stephanie.aml/

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