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  • Dr. Liz Homan

Fertility Journey

Unfortunately, recent statics show that 1 in 8 couples, or 12% of married women have trouble getting pregnant or sustaining a pregnancy, and these numbers have not changed much in the last 20 years according to the World Health Organization (WHO).

When a couple decides that they are ready to start a family, they make it a priority and oftentimes do a lot of work to make their dream family come true.

But things do not always go as planned and they may struggle. There can be many causes of what may make conceiving a little more difficult.

If you needed to rank the cause of fertility issues from highest to lowest frequency, which order would you put the following in?. The options are (1) Male Infertility, (2) Female Issues and (3) Issues with Both.

Well, I am going to throw you for a curve ball… they are all equal! Each of these are responsible for around 1/3 of the cases of fertility issues according to the Mayo Clinic.

Male infertility can be abnormal sperm production or function, problems with the delivery of sperm, overexposure to certain environmental factors or damage to the male sexual organs due to caner or its treatment. Female issues can include ovulation disorder, uterine or cervical abnormalities, fallopian tube damage or blockage, endometriosis, primary ovarian insufficiency, or pelvic adhesions. And then in the final 1/3 of cases, there are issues with both the male and the female or no official cause can be determined.

So, what can you do when you are wanting to start or expand your family, but you are experiencing infertility? I want to share with you both the common allopathic treatments and how structural issues may be the cause.

In the past 35 years, in-vitro fertilization (IVF), has become the standard in fertility treatments and has helped conceive over 5 million babies! Couples spend between $12,000 and $15,000 for IVF. Beyond IVF, other fertility treatments include intracytoplasmic sperm injection, donor eggs, and the use of fertility drugs that are ovulation drug therapy (Clomid or Serophene). The purpose of fertility drugs is to encourage the body to ovulate.

When you stimulate the body to do something that it is not naturally doing for some reason, it can lead to what I like to call Warning Signs. Warning Signs are our body telling us that it is not liking what is being done and that we should look to see what is causing these changes. An example of this is for Clomid. Clomid is the most commonly used hormone treatment and has a 60-80% ovulational rate and about half of those that use it will be able to get pregnant. It does have some side effects, or warning signs, that include hot flashes, blurred vision, nausea, bloating, headaches and changes in cervical mucus which may make it harder for the sperm to get to the uterus… does that make any sense… a drug that is supposed to help with fertility then makes it harder for the sperm to get where it is supposed to go…

Now let’s look at how the body works and how chiropractic may play a part in assisting those with fertility issues. The central nervous system (brain, spinal cord, and nerves) go out and supplies every organ, tissue and gland in the body. When the vertebra (bones in our back) misalign, it can impact the nerve transmission and lead to a change in how the organs, tissues and glands are working. This is called a Subluxation.

A subluxation in the lumbar spine can result in ovarian or fallopian tube dysfunction while a sacral or pelvic subluxation can affect uterine tilt. In men, subluxations can lead to changes in the production and delivery of sperm. Hormonal balance is controlled by the endocrine system which is controlled by the central nervous system and when there are subluxations present, it can lead to imbalances forming.

Dr. Behrendt, whose purpose is to share anecdotal evidence of chiropractic helping patients with their fertility, states that chiropractic in and of itself is not a “cure” or a treatment for infertility. However, chiropractic does correct distortions in parts of the body where the reproductive organs are located, and this can have a positive effect on many fertility issues.

So many women have shared that once they begin regular chiropractic care that their cycles self-regulate and that they no longer experience the ups and downs during the month. Some have also reported that they were able to conceive naturally after some time.

So even though chiropractic is not the cure for infertility, a properly functioning reproductive system is rarely infertile. It might be something worth trying out because the ‘side effects’ from chiropractic care are not near like the warning signs I listed above.

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