When a couple decide on some level that they want to have a baby, the early stages of “trying” are fun. But after a few months and no sign of a positive pregnancy test, fear starts to creep in. Fear along with its friends worry, and doubt. Then things aren’t so fun, sex can become a chore, an almost desperate experience for some. Men find they are put under enormous pressure to preform, here, now, the ovulation kit says so!
We see this pattern 70% of the time, the relationship can become strained and from that moment that the woman wants a baby so badly, that she will do anything to get it, well that’s not a healthy place to be. Our bodies release stress hormones, our sleep patterns become erratic and our fertile bodies let us down.
At The Clonmel Acupuncture & Therapy Centre we address all aspects of getting the body, mind and soul ready to conceive and carry a beautiful, healthy baby into this world.
Think of your garden for a moment, to plant a vibrant flower, how would you prepare the soil? You would use the richest, most fertile soil, full of nutrients, watered and warm, ready for that flower to grow in this wonderful, nurtured environment? Yes you would.
Working out when you are at your most fertile can be very confusing, especially when you have few fertile signs to begin with.
My job is to help teach couples to recognise any imbalances, and treat them to increase energy into their fertile window. Listening and responding to your body's signs is really the key to conceiving. Bear in mind that given the right environment sperm can last inside you for up to 5 days, whereas when an egg is released from the ovary it needs to be fertilised within 24 hours. Over the last 16 years working with fertility I have found these tips very useful.
Most important of all…manage both of your stress levels; stress has an enormous negative impact on your fertility. It can even be the cause of irregular ovulation. So look into ways to DE-stress. Learn to Meditate; take up Yoga, Tai Chi or Qigong. Treat yourself to a massage once a month.
Start to take regular gentle exercise; walking in the woods has a profoundly positive effect on reducing stress. Just 30 minutes a day can really make a difference.
Eat a diet full of lots of fresh, organic energy rich foods. Snacking on seeds and nuts really help to keep your blood sugar balanced. Meat eaters try to eat free-range top quality meat, growth hormones that can be found in some meats (especially chicken) can have a knock on effect to our hormones too.
Remember you are what you eat… Too much caffeine, alcohol and sugar are the usual 3 that we see frequently. Quit smoking prior to trying to conceive. Get help to quit and give your body 3 months to allow the negative effects and free radical damage that smoking can do to both sperm and egg quality, to begin to leave the body.
Drink plenty of fluids (Filtered water) especially in the morning; aim to drink at least 1 litre before lunchtime. If it's winter and cold, try warm water or room temperature, avoid ice.
Sleep, sleep and more sleep! Trust us when we tell you, sleep is paramount to your fertility. If you don't sleep well, or have an interrupted sleep pattern, this has a knock on effect on your hormone balance.
Balance your hormones, if your cycle is irregular it is much harder to determine your fertile window, try getting acupuncture, and reflexology to help get you back into a regular cycle. Regular Acupuncture sessions not only help regulate hormones but also can help increase fertile signs in the body. It does this by increasing the blood flow into and around the reproductive organs. This usually takes 3 cycles. If you are concerned that your cycle is very irregular talk to your GP. They can carry out 2 simple blood tests to check on your hormones. On a 28 day cycle these tests are usually carried out on day 3 (FSH) and day 21(progesterone). Checking thyroid is also a good idea.
Try introducing 2-3 minutes of Acupressure such as Yin-tang. This point has a direct balancing effect on the endocrine system, great for those with high FSH levels, or low cervical mucus. This can be done just before bed to help with sleep as well. See Image below
Bear in mind that given the right cervical conditions sperm can last inside you for 5 days, we find that couples that have regular sex, at least three times a week throughout the cycle, conceive much faster than couples who wait for an ovulation kit to tell them they are fertile, limiting the amount of sex to just the peak of their fertile window.
Keep your Vitamin C levels up, this helps keep your cervical mucus more watery therefore more sperm friendly. Foods such as Broccoli, Kale, Kiwi, Oranges, Red, green and yellow peppers, sweet potato, strawberries and tomatoes are all good sources of Vitamin C.
Avoid wearing thongs/G Strings, these can reduce your cervical mucus because of the constant close contact. You don't have to wear Bridget Jones knickers, there are plenty of sexy undies out there!
Trying swapping Tampons for sanitary towels for 3 cycles and see if this helps increase your cervical mucus, it generally does. Your Body will tell you when it is fertile – we need to learn to listen to it, not an ovulation kit!!! Cervical Mucus is Key to fertility – the more you have the greater the chances of conception. As soon as your body produces Cervical Mucus you are becoming more Fertile
Men; make sure you are taking a really good quality multi- vitamin. Sperm needs good nutritional support to be healthy and fertile. See Male Fertility Blog for more tips.
There are plenty of herbal supplements that can really help, Agnus Castus, Evening Primrose Oil are just two examples that help balance and promote a healthy fertile window. The longer your fertile window, the greater the chances of conception. Talk to a health adviser to see which could help you best.
We hope these tips help, remember it takes 3 months to see a marked improvement in both of your fertility so be kind to yourselves, relax and enjoy. Don’t put your life on hold. Book that holiday, go and see your friends and re connect in a positive way to life. Keep telling your body it is AMAZING,it is FERTILE and keep communicating as a couple.