Guest Post: How Chinese Medicine Can Help with Infertility

Elisabeth Horesh is a practitioner of acupuncture and Chinese medicine operating in Massachusetts.  She is board-certified in Oriental Reproductive Medicine and founded Nurture Whole Health and Reproductive Acupuncture with the goal of supporting patients in their pursuit of better health and wellness.

 

If you are one of the millions of women worldwide having difficulty conceiving, chances are you’ve heard that acupuncture could help.  What you may not have heard is that practitioners of Chinese medicine have more to offer than acupuncture alone. 

Chinese medicine is actually a system of medicine that utilizes acupuncture along with many other techniques and therapies to help you achieve an optimal state of balance and health. A full service practitioner of Chinese medicine can offer patients an array of options:

·        Chinese herbal medicine

·        acupuncture

·        moxabustion (more information)

·        cupping (more information)  

·        dietary therapy

·        lifestyle counseling

·        mind-body techniques

Having a practitioner of Chinese medicine who can treat the whole person through a variety of techniques is especially important when treating fertility since it can be a very complex issue.

With Chinese medicine, the first step in dealing with any problems related to women’s reproductive health is to regulate the menstrual cycle. Generally, a healthy period in Chinese medicine is a cycle between 26-32 days, with bright red bleeding for 4-6 days, no cramping, no clotting, and no PMS.  Your provider should ask you very detailed questions about your period and any symptoms you experience related to your cycle. Some of the red flags we look for in my practice are painful cramping, dark blood with clotting, irregular cycles, and low back pain before or during your period. These – along with a host of other signs and symptoms – can all be indicators that your organs, blood, and overall energy are not working harmoniously together. 

In my practice we also incorporate basal body temperature (BBT) charting (using Kindara) since certain patterns within your chart can help us diagnose an imbalance. Evaluating BBT patterns, along with analyzing your tongue, interpreting your pulse, and reviewing your medical history helps us paint a picture of your overall constitutional health. With this information, we can then determine the best treatment plan for you and your partner.

In many cases when applicable, we are not only treating the female, but also the male partner, especially in cases of unexplained infertility. Treating the couple gives us a much better chance of finding the root of the problem, and can be a relaxing time for people who might be experiencing a lot of stress, frustration, and anxiety surrounding their inability to conceive or maintain a healthy pregnancy.

One of the most wonderful things about Chinese medicine is that it can be incorporated into almost any treatment plan. While very successful on its own, Chinese medicine techniques and therapies can also be very effective at supporting patients who are undergoing Western medical treatments such as IUIs and IVF. 

The best practitioner for you is the one who can provide all of the treatment options that make sense based on your individual needs. The American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine (ABORM) is a group of professionals who are focused on promoting and ensuring that their members have a level of knowledge and competency in reproductive health so they can guide you to the most appropriate decision for your individual fertility needs. To find the best practitioner for you, visit ABORM’s website for a directory of fellows of ABORM in your state.

The American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine (ABORM)

Nurture Whole Health

Libby@nurturewholehealth.com

Elisabeth (Libby) Horesh, Lic. Ac., MAOM, Dipl.OM, FABORM Elisabeth Horesh became interested in Chinese medicine after being diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome in her twenties. After using Chinese medicine rather than typical Western treatments, her symptoms resolved within a few months. Elisabeth founded Nurture Whole Health and Reproductive Acupuncture with the goal of supporting patients in their pursuit of better health and wellness, and she is one of only three acupuncturists in Massachusetts board-certified in Oriental Reproductive Medicine. She lives in Bolton, MA with her husband, two children, a dog, and a bunch of chickens.  

Elisabeth (Libby) Horesh, Lic. Ac., MAOM, Dipl.OM, FABORM

Elisabeth Horesh became interested in Chinese medicine after being diagnosed with polycystic ovarian syndrome in her twenties. After using Chinese medicine rather than typical Western treatments, her symptoms resolved within a few months. Elisabeth founded Nurture Whole Health and Reproductive Acupuncture with the goal of supporting patients in their pursuit of better health and wellness, and she is one of only three acupuncturists in Massachusetts board-certified in Oriental Reproductive Medicine. She lives in Bolton, MA with her husband, two children, a dog, and a bunch of chickens.

 

 

 


Powerful Implications: Why the Supreme Court’s decision in the Hobby Lobby case matters to us

On June 30th, the Supreme Court ruled that for-profit companies with religious objections can opt out of providing contraceptives for their employees under Obamacare. You might be wondering why an app that offers an alternative to birth control would consider it important to write about a Supreme Court decision allowing companies to deny health care coverage for IUDs and other forms of birth control to their employees. My favorite part of working at Kindara is that the company believes that every woman should have access to the tools that help her to understand and be in control of her own body. Putting the power to determine what birth control women can use into the hands of for-profit companies has the potential to deny many women control over their bodies.  

Another frightening aspect of this Supreme Court decision is the implications for lower income women and their families. Society benefits from birth control being accessible to all women. Access to birth control empowers women to feel ownership over their bodies and prevents unwanted pregnancy, which is a right all women should have regardless of where they work or their socioeconomic status.  Under this ruling, many women who can’t afford birth control out of pocket will be denied this basic human right. Other women will be faced with decisions between birth control and rent, or food money, or perhaps transportation to work.

We believe that all women should have the power to make informed decisions about what birth control option is right for them. Unfortunately, not every employer understands – or cares – how vastly different each female employee's body, financial constraints, and contraceptive needs are.  This Supreme Court Decision implies that the religious beliefs held by higher-ups in an organization are more important than a woman’s relationship with her body and health. While we don’t believe the pill or an IUD is necessarily the right choice for every woman and try to offer an alternative, we do believe that what form of birth control a woman uses must be her choice.

To read more on the SCOTUS decision, click here.

 

[July 8th Addendum]

In response to the comments we received on this post, we would like to formally clarify our stance as a company in regards to political topics.  We understand that the issues relating to the SCOTUS decision are precious to many of our users, and we did not present the issue with the impartiality it deserved.

At our core, Kindara is a mission-driven company, and we will always prioritize empowerment of women.  However, we acknowledge that many women’s rights issues manifest indivisibly with polarizing political topics including the separation of church and state, the size and role of government, and corporate personhood.   We did not mean to imply that any of these issues are black and white, or that supporting the SCOTUS decision goes hand-in-hand with misogyny.  We would like to formally apologize to anyone who felt affronted by our analysis of the issue.