Acupuncture has been used in Chinese medicine for centuries. It is founded on the notion of Chi which, according to Chinese tradition, is the energy that flows through all things. In acupuncture, there are meridians, or special conduits, on the skin. These form a connection between the skin’s surface and the organs within the body. When the chi is perfectly balanced, it flows through the body, boosting the immune system and cleansing the body. However, when the chi becomes imbalanced, the flow od energy is impeded, causing health problems.
Acupuncture involves the placement of very fine needles of varying lengths into your skin where the meridians are located; as few as three and as many as twenty needles may be used. An acupuncture session usually runs between 45 minutes to an hour and the length the needles remain in place will depend on the condition being treated. During the treatment, the practitioner may twirl, warm or electrically energize the needles to enhance their healing effects.
There is evidence to suggest that acupuncture can increase the odds of becoming pregnant. Studies show that women who get acupuncture to treat conditions which can cause infertility, such as polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) have a higher rate of successful pregnancy and live births. Some doctors recommend acupuncture to reduce stress, as it can increase stress hormones, can reduce the fertility hormone progesterone.
It is believed that acupuncture works by improving the flow of energy throughout the body, calming the nervous system, and encouraging the body to heal itself. The effects it has will depend on where the needles are inserted, but acupuncture can make someone feel relaxed, sleepy, or more alert. It can also cause an increase or decrease in certain hormones and promote blood flow to the reproductive organs. All these beneficial effects can help make fertility treatment more effective.
Acupuncture needles are hair-thin; much finer than the needle doctors use to draw a blood sample. If there is any feeling at all, it will be similar to that of plucking an eyebrow. Once the needle is in the skin, it cannot be felt. Many patients fall asleep during an acupuncture session.
Many women continue acupuncture during pregnancy. It is perfectly safe and may have a number of benefits such as relieving the symptoms of morning sickness, even when they are at their most severe. It can also be used during pregnancy to reduce feelings of exhaustion, alleviate migraine headaches, and lower back pain.