Elaborating further on Katherine's point and how stress influences reproductive health. Your mind can affect your ability to get pregnant on multiple levels:
Intense or repeated emotional responses to personal, social, and work-related stressors can cause a physical reaction in the body, throwing it into a state of emergency. The hypothalamus activates the so called fight-or-flight response to protect us from harm.As you might know, reproduction is one of the most delicate systems in our body. Over time, the prolonged cumulative effect of this stress can affect your reproductive system in a negative way. Since the reproductive system is not vital for immediate survival, its function is suppressed and the body’s energy is directed elsewhere in preparation to fight or flee.
The hypothalamus gland is not only responsible for providing balance in our bodies but also helps control the levels of key fertility hormones LH and FSH through the pituitary gland. If the hypothalamus senses stress, the messages sent to the ovary to release eggs may be interrupted and cause stress-induced infertility.
To break this pattern the underlying emotional tension must be addressed. You might carry negative beliefs such as: “My whole happiness depends on having a baby,” or “It’s my fault that I can’t get pregnant.” A recent study on mind body interventions and pregnancy rates in IVF patients (Domar et al., 2011) found that women who completed a mind body stress reduction program had higher pregnancy rates (cklick here for more info).
Other options (which are by no means exhaustive) worth exploring when it comes to aid conceiving are:
- Chinese medicine to enhance fertility http://www.sattvanaturaltherapies.com.au/articles/fertility-and-preconception/
- Chiropractic treatment, as spinal health contributes to fertility http://www.wellnesschiropractic.com.au/
- Fertility Yoga (specific postures to nourish and stimulate the reproductive organs) http://www.angeayoga.com.au/
- Acupuncture to support your IVF treatments http://melbourneivfacupuncture.com.au/
For more info click here
Hope that helps,
Melbourne Counselling, Prahran Counsellor: Alexandra Bloch-Atefi, PhD, VIC
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Alice D. Domar, Kristin L. Rooney, Benjamin Wiegand, E. John Orav, Michael M. Alper, Brian M. Berger, Janeta Nikolovski. Impact of a group mind/body intervention on pregnancy rates in IVF patients. Fertility and Sterility, 2011; DOI:
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