Fertility, Sub-fertility & Infertility: Why am I having trouble conceiving?
Infertility or subfertility is defined as the inability to conceive or carry a baby to term after one year of regular intercourse without birth control.
Frustrated couples unable to conceive often consider assisted reproductive technologies but these can bring a whole new set of frustrations. Intra-Uterine Insemination (IUI) is expensive and time-consuming, while IVF (in-vitro fertilisation) is particularly gruelling and involves harsh medication as well as putting immense emotional strain on the couple.
Before considering either option, we suggest you try an integrative approach to improve your fertility. Integrated natural medicine has a lot to offer couples struggling to conceive. While many people look only to conventional medicine for help, we know there are many other factors to consider when trying to start a family: pollution, nutritional deficiencies, body weight, processed food consumption, stress, smoking and alcohol consumption – all have significant impact on fertility. By taking a more natural and holistic approach to your health, we can help you address these issues and improve your chances of getting pregnant.
We believe in restoring and maintaining good health by strengthening your body’s own healing power. We offer a number of treatment modalities to help you conceive naturally and we treat both men and women. In fact, around 40% of infertility cases are attributed to the male partner. We begin with a thorough review of your medical history and lifestyle. We test and identify the underlying hindrances contributing to why you are having difficulties conceiving and put together an individualised treatment plan. We have helped countless couples struggling with infertility, to successfully conceive and go on to have a healthy baby.
Harvard researchers have found a clear link between diet and lifestyle habits and fertility (Chavarro, 2007). Experts are now linking toxic chemicals to a variety of different illnesses and conditions, including infertility (Toft, 2004). Exposure to certain pesticides, solvents and metals has been shown to affect fertility, particularly in men.
Common causes of Infertility:
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS)
- Ovulatory disorders
- Advanced maternal age
- Thyroid problems – both overactive thyroid gland and underactive thyroid gland
- Hormonal imbalance
- Male infertility—low sperm count and/or quality
- Medications: sulfasalazine, anabolic steroids, chemotherapy
Naturopathic medicine - is a holistic care modality that seeks to correct nutritional deficiencies, adjust hormonal imbalances, and improve overall reproductive health. We are able to test your DNA to see if you have any issues with methylating as this is an important process the body needs to make DNA and conceive a child. We can also test and sometimes treat hormone imbalances, ovulatory disorders, and other factors that could be contributing to your difficulties conceiving. We also remove obstacles to healing such as toxins, allergens and heavy metals. We look at lifestyle factors, such as the effects that smoking, alcohol, exercise, diet, weight and stress have on your chances to conceive. Treatment differs from patient to patient but incorporates dietary and lifestyle modifications, vitamin and mineral supplements and herbal and homeopathic medicine.
Homeopathy - takes into account your infertility symptoms along with your unique physical, mental and genetic make-up. Homeopathy can support many of the symptoms related to infertility, such as irregular menstruation, endometriosis, polycystic ovaries, fibroids and miscarriages. It is also a fantastic method for bringing the overall body back into balance. A personalised remedy will be prescribed for you.
Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) - regards the kidneys, liver, heart and uterus as forming the core of reproductive activity. Together, these organs regulate the menstrual cycle. Acupuncture and herbal medicine can increase the chance of getting pregnant by improving the function of these organs, which in turn promotes qi (energy) and blood flow to critical areas of the body. Conditions such as endometriosis, PCOS and amenorrhea all benefit from TCM therapies and acupuncture. It can also help older women conceive. The aim of TCM therapies is to re-establish balance in the body. If you opt for IVF, studies have found that combining this technology with acupuncture increases your chances of getting pregnant.
Osteopathy - is a fantastic therapy for enhancing fertility and supporting you through all stages of your pregnancy. Gentle soft tissue techniques and manipulations can help to remove the stress on your uterus by making sure your pelvis is aligned properly, your muscles are balanced and strong, and unwanted tensions are released. By restoring freedom in your tissues and normalising your fluid flow, your inherent physiological function resumes, and your chances of pregnancy improve.
Preconception detox - We are living in an environment much more toxic than the one our previous generations live in. Today, babies are born “pre-polluted”, according to the Washington DC-based Environmental Working Group (EWG). Four out of five couples previously diagnosed as infertile have been able to conceive naturally on an organic diet, hygienic lifestyle, heavy metal detoxification and a supplemental nutrition program, according to a study by Foresight, the association for pre-conceptual care in UK. IMI offers a Pre-Conception Detox Program lead by qualified Naturopaths to help couples to eliminate toxins. read more
Articles, blogs, videos and resources:
Male infertility: 10 factors that affect sperm count and morphology
It is estimated that about one in seven couples faces difficulty conceiving. In Hong Kong, male infertility can be problematic owing to the widely acknowledged stressful lifestyle and a high...
How to boost your fertility and IVF success
Chinese version 跳至中文版 Many couples are encouraged to consider assisted reproductive technology (ART) such as IUI or IVF after just a few months of trying to conceive without success. Though these...
End the silence: The emotional effects of infertility, miscarriage and stillbirth and the support available.
Feelings surrounding infertility and pregnancy loss are complicated. IMI Psychotherapist Ilisa Howard describes the breadth of emotions couples may experience and the support available.
Chinese herbal medicine: twice as effective for infertility as conventional therapy
A bold statement but this can be back up by several global studies. A study at the University of Adelaide, South Australia reviewed a range of studies that involved 1,851...