Pregnancy & Fertility
Complementary medicine can have a part to play during the pregnancy, before and afterwards. However particularly towards the beginning of the pregnancy any mother to be must be very careful what therapies, supplements, essential oils or herbal remedies are used. Your midwife or Doctor should be your first stop for guidance on your pregnancy. In this section we will give examples of what is often used however this information is not given as guidance or as a recommendation, please consult your medical professional
The incidence of difficulties in becoming pregnant have been increasing over the last few decades. Although there are a huge number of reasons that complications can occur there are some areas where complementary medicine can help, however these may vary depending on the problem.
One of the most frequently given pieces of advice is to consider moving to a more organic food based diet and increasing your intake of fruit, veg and wholegrains. These changes can help ensure that viable sperm/eggs are present.
There are a number of herbs that have a history and reputation for use in male impotence and although there is no true “herbal viagra” there are a number of herbs that may help.
Some herbs are reputed to have a beneficial effect on the female reproductive system, however these may help from issues such as irregular periods to reducing the risk of miscarriage.
We strongly believe that taking any medication whether herbal or otherwise related to pregnancy should be done under the guidance of a medical professional. To find out more about consulting a medical herbalist click here.
Massage During Pregnancy
Massage during pregnancy can be very helpful to manage the muscular strain due carrying a growing baby. Massage during pregnancy normally requires the therapist to attend additional training and training is normally mandatory to obtain insurance cover. The massage can also be useful during the birth and recovery.
There are a number of herbs that may recommended by midwifes to help with the recovery from birth. These can be recommended to be used in the bath to help with healing, used internally to help with post-natal depression or for a number of other reasons.
Infertility is an increasingly common problem that can have a huge effect on the affected people. Although IVF (In Vitro Fertilisation) is often considered by conventional medicine to be the answer, the relatively low success rates, expense and side effects mean that for many people complementary therapies offer a realistic choice. This section describes some of the therapies and therapists working at Woodland Herbs who have chosen to specialise in the treatment of infertility.
There is a lot of documented evidence and research that shows that Acupuncture can be extremely helpful in the treatment of infertility. It has been shown to improve uterine blood flow, lower FSH levels, regulate menstrual cycles, help with conditions such as endometriosis, anovulation, and to improve general health. Acupuncturists including have found it to be beneficial to women going through medical treatment such as IVF and believe that it helps with stress levels as well as the treatment itself. Depending on the situation, we often recommend a course of treatments for at least one cycle and also use acupuncture as someone is actually undergoing IVF during stimulation, and before and after transfer. For a recent review of research view: Infertility and Acupuncture
Infertility in both male and females can be treated using Medical Herbalism . Impressive results have been seen by improving eating habits and addressing other important factors for both male and females. This can include addressing factors such as obesity. Where an underlying cause requires treatment with herbs, a medical herbalist should be consulted to ensure appropriate herbs are used. Due to the nature of the reproductive process and the way herbal medicine works, what is suitable for one person may not be suitable, or may even be detrimental to another. Hormone balancing herbs may be considered appropriate in some instances, or a mix of herbs and supplements to address sperm motility or other issues.
Although acupuncture and herbalism can focus on infertility, other issues such as stopping smoking can also be addressed to increase chances of a successful conception and birth.
What to do next?
The choices faced can often be bewildering and it can be helpful to discuss your needs with a potential therapist. We can arrange for you to speak to any of our therapists by telephone or a short discussion in the clinic. This should allow you the chance to decide what to do and to ask questions. Our medical herbalists and acupuncturist may also work together to offer a combined treatment programme if desired. Please Get In Touch if you have any questions