Are You Trying For a Family But Having Issues With Fertility?
Having a family is one of the greatest choices that couples will make in the lifetime. It is certainly exciting, and also very daunting at times. We all assume that we’re capable of starting our families when we are in our prime, however, for various reasons, people are waiting till later in life to start their families. This wait and increase in age is resulting in higher incidences of couples being affected by infertility.
Today it is estimated that one in six Australian couples is infertile, with the cost to taxpayers for Assisted Reproductive Technologies (ART) procedures been hundreds of millions of dollars per year. These statistics and numbers are surprising high.
What is Infertility?
Infertility is defined as the inability for a couple to conceive after one year of unprotected vaginal intercourse. For a female aged over 35, she is considered infertile if she has not conceived within six months of unprotected intercourse.
Some Common Causes of Infertility
Sex organ irregularities
Thickened cervical mucus
Abnormal genetic development
Disease (PID, tubal or other)
Reproductive system issues
Decreased sperm count/egg quality
Exposure to chemicals, pesticides and other toxins.
N.B: Female cause in over 60% of cases
What is the Medical Treatment for Infertility?
The medical treatment for infertility can be invasive and expensive and according to some research, more likely to eventuate in various adverse outcomes.
Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) is defined as any manipulation of reproduction and can vary from IVF, to artificial insemination with partner or donor sperm, to hormonal replacement treatment or surgical procedures which assist conception.
One of the most frequent ART methods used is in-vitro fertilization (IVF). IVF involves stimulating the ovaries by medications to release eggs that are then collected and fertilized. The resulting embryo is grown in laboratory conditions prior to implantation into the female uterus.
These treatments do not guarantee fertility success and commonly more than one type of treatment is undertaken. Ongoing treatments with continued unsuccessful outcomes can lead to a great deal of stress for those couples. Not just financially, but emotionally, mentally and physically.
Can a Chiropractor Help you get Pregnant?
To some this question may sound ridiculous and never cross your mind. But when a woman is having trouble conceiving it might be a different matter. If you’re having problems getting pregnant, you might want to consider visiting a chiropractor as part of your overall strategy to deal with fertility issues.
How Does Chiropractic Fit In?
In many cases, fertility problems are related to improper nervous system function, poor nutrition, high stress and poor lifestyle habits. Many women and doctors fail to appreciate the importance of optimal nervous system function when it comes fertility. Your reproductive organs are not under your conscious control but instead are directed by your Autonomic Nervous System (ANS) which is a branch of the Peripheral Nervous System (PNS). But like the CEO over a big company, overseeing everything and in ultimate control, is the Central Nervous System (CNS), made up of your brain and spinal cord.
In relation to fertility, in order to conceive, a woman’s egg must move from the ovary, through the fallopian tube where it will meet the sperm for fertilization in the uterus. That movement of the egg is accomplished through a rhythmic, smooth muscular action called peristalsis (the same phenomenon that occurs in your intestines in order to propel food through the digestive tract). This smooth muscle activity that propels the egg is controlled by the signal relayed between the CNS and the PNS. But what if this signal is been interfered with? This leads us to how chiropractic treatment may just help you!
How Does Chiropractic Work?
Have you ever heard of a subluxation? You likely have if you have seen a chiropractor. Subluxations are simply misalignments in the spine that interfere with the nerve communication between the PNS and the CNS. Subluxations are caused by things like scoliosis, stress, accidents/trauma such as a motor vehicle accident or a tackle on the footy field, poor posture or just general everyday living. It’s these misalignments, particularly in the vertebrae of the lower back that can disrupt the nerve communication between the reproductive organs and the CNS.
When nerves involved in the reproductive system are blocked or otherwise not working properly, this might result in a hormone imbalance, insufficient peristaltic activity – hampering the eggs ability to reach its destination, or other malfunction which could lead to fertility issues. The end result can include an inability to conceive or, in some cases, endometriosis.
Chiropractors specialize in locating subluxations and removing the nerve interference with specific adjustments which permit the body to heal, function and perform like it was designed to. Chiropractic treatment involves manipulating and readjusting the spine, correcting dysfunction and relieving the pressure on nerves running through the spinal column.
Once these subluxations are corrected, it is believed that a woman’s reproductive system will function better, possibly resulting in a successful pregnancy.
It is important to clarify, chiropractic care is not a cure for infertility. Chiropractic care simply restores and optimizes your body’s inborn ability to create the miracle of life. Prior to resorting to medical intervention, it is encouraged to try more conservative options first. Chiropractic aims to get the body to work properly by addressing nervous system function, nutrition, stress management and lifestyle habits first.
Chiropractic care can be used in conjunction with other accepted approaches to resolving infertility concerns such as Acupuncture that you may already be interested in receiving here at Almond Wellness Centre and can greatly improve the chances of successful medical procedures such as In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) and extend to the female body’s reproductive system.
Is Chiropractic Care Expensive?
With the cost of In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) ranging from $10,000 to $20,000 per attempt, chiropractic care has the potential of saving patients a large amount of money by helping them avoid the need for IVF entirely, or by reducing the number of IVF attempts needed to achieve conception. Chiropractic care is a cost-effective approach to improving health and well-being. If you’re already coming to Almond Wellness Centre and receiving Acupuncture, ask one of our friendly staff about our “Pregnancy Package” for great discounts when adding Chiropractic as part of your treatment.
Talking with your Health Care Provider about Chiropractic Care
Those interested, should discuss the option of chiropractic care with their health care provider.
Increasing numbers of women are desiring the benefits of chiropractic care before, during and after pregnancy, leading to other health care providers seeking trained Doctors of Chiropractic in their communities to refer their patients.
Providers who are not yet familiar with chiropractic care and pregnancy, should be encouraged to learn more about its many benefits. In any case, it is important to search out options that support your body’s natural abilities to function and to identify a team of providers who are respectful of your choices.
The majority of published research on the connection between chiropractic treatment and pregnancy can be found in the Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research (JVSR). A three- part series of case studies published in 2003 showed a successful correlation between women receiving chiropractic care and increased fertility. Some of the women in the study visited a chiropractor specifically for help becoming pregnant, while others went for spinal adjustments due to other concerns – and then became pregnant during the time they were treated by the chiropractor. One of the JVSR studies, from May 2003, reported “successful outcomes on reproductive integrity, regardless of factors including age, history and [prior] medical intervention.” It is not clear how chiropractic treatment can specifically benefit fertility, but one suggestion is that spinal adjustment enhances peristalsis.
In another study published in the peer-reviewed Journal of Vertebral Subluxation Research, looked at the effectiveness of chiropractic for infertility. It followed 15 women who ranged in age from 22 – 65 with a history of infertility. 14 of the 15 subjects became pregnant within 2 – 20 months of starting chiropractic care. The 65yearold did not get pregnant, but after a lifetime with no menstrual periods, she began menstruating 4 weeks after beginning chiropractic adjustments. While not conclusive, the results of this study are definitely encouraging and warrant further research.
Important to Remember
While these published reports make encouraging claims, it’s important to keep in mind that the JVSR studies are not scientifically conclusive and were based on results from a relatively small number of women. Larger clinical trials, comparing chiropractic care to more conventional infertility treatments, have yet to be performed to make a definitive scientific claim about a beneficial connection between chiropractic spinal adjustments and attempts to get pregnant. At the same time, seeing a chiropractor is worth considering if you’re having problems getting pregnant – but it should be just one of your choices, along with more conventional treatment methods. Also, be wary of a chiropractor – or any practitioner, for that matter – who makes pie-in-the-sky promises of success or miracle cures. Many people believe that chiropractic treatment
can remedy a wide variety of ailments, but every patient is unique and while chiropractic adjustments aren’t harmful, there are no guarantees of a positive result. Chiropractors generally require a series of visits to treat any issue, including infertility. Insurance companies often cover a number of visits to a chiropractor, so check with your insurance carrier to see if this is an affordable option.