Have you and your partner been trying to conceive for over a year without success? If so, it’s likely that you are experiencing infertility problems, which may be affecting one or both partners. Infertility affects 1 in 10 couples trying to conceive and while there are many treatment methods available today for infertility, they don’t always work for everyone. As such, it’s wise for couples experiencing infertility to consider alternative methods outside of traditional treatments to improve chances of conception, and chiropractic care could provide great assistance for your fertility needs. Everyone knows that chiropractic care is primarily used to treat a variety of physical conditions that primarily affect the spine and the nervous system, but this practice may also help address underlying issues that could be contributing to reproductive challenges.
The Importance of Your Spinal Cord
Obviously, the spinal cord plays a crucial role in your mobility, your functionality, and your overall health. The vertebrae in your spine are not only responsible for supporting your entire skeletal structure, they are also responsible for transmitting nerve signals between the brain and the rest of the body, and that includes your reproductive organs.
Spinal misalignments and other concerning issues related to the spine can develop from injuries, accidents, poor posture, and a variety of situations, and these misalignments can greatly interfere with proper nerve signaling. From your balance and physical motor controls to your reaction times and pain management, spinal misalignments can negatively impact a multitude of bodily functions and systems, including your reproductive health.
Can Chiropractic Care Help Improve Infertility Issues?
Before we go any further, it’s important to clarify that chiropractic care is not the end-all solution for infertility problems; rather this therapeutic practice has the potential to help improve infertility factors. How? Because these types of manual therapies can help address the root causes that may contribute to reproductive health issues.
For example, numerous studies have shown that chiropractic care is highly effective at reducing and regulating stress hormone levels, especially when combined with other therapies and treatments like massage therapy or acupuncture. This stress reduction can greatly benefit those experiencing infertility challenges because high stress levels can have a negative impact on reproductive health. Because stress and anxiety levels are directly controlled by certain hormones like cortisol and norepinephrine, they can disrupt the delicate balance of hormones within your body. The resulting imbalances amongst your hormones can impact the fertility journeys of both women and men because reproductive cycles are dependent upon your hormones.
While stress and anxiety can contribute to infertility, there are many cases in which fertility issues are associated with other factors like improper nervous system function, poor diet/nutrition, and even unhealthy lifestyle habits or behaviors. Fortunately, chiropractors focus on the nervous system directly, and they may assist with many types of infertility cases.
Blockages in the Fallopian Tubes And Interference With Nerves
Although fertility is incredibly complex, chiropractic care may help with particular fertility issues for female partners, like blocked fallopian tubes. When your fallopian tubes are blocked, it obstructs the natural passage of eggs and sperm, thus making it harder to conceive. Fortunately, there is some clinical evidence that suggests chiropractic adjustments and spinal manipulations can correct this issue and remove the blockages.
Each chiropractor approaches adjustments in slightly different ways, but you can generally expect that an adjustment will increase the physical space between your spinal vertebrae and remove pressure from your nerves, which allows your nerves and blood vessels to function more efficiently. In addition, that adjustment will promote the release of “feel good” hormones like dopamine and serotonin, which help alleviate stress and further contribute to improved blood circulation throughout the body. The resulting increased blood flow can make it easier for the female partner’s eggs to move into the fallopian tubes once fertilized.
It’s also worth noting that chiropractic adjustments can promote better nerve signaling and reduce communication interference between nerves, which can positively impact the menstrual cycle and reproductive health in females.
Pinpoint Causes of Infertility
Fertility is a complex subject and it equally affects men and women. However, when compared to male partners, females have a greater number of potential causes of infertility that range from uterine polyps, pelvic inflammatory disease, endometriosis, ovulation issues, and so on. Identifying all of the contributing causes to your infertility status isn’t always an easy process. While many reproductive health specialists can help nail down the exact causes, a chiropractor can also help you pinpoint any potential causes.
Many chiropractor have access to a wide range of unique and innovative technological solutions, such as advanced thermal imaging and/or X-ray technology, which they may utilize to determine if you have any subluxations (i.e., partial misalignments) in the vertebrae. Many different health issues are linked to subluxations in different parts of the spine. Upon examining your spine through those advanced technologies, your chiropractor may develop a better idea of what problems are contributing to your infertility status.
Benefits of Chiropractic Treatments for Male Infertility
As of writing this article, there is limited clinical research available that highlights the ways in which chiropractic care can support and improve male infertility issues. That said, research on this subject is still ongoing and we know that there are multiple potential benefits that male partners can gain from chiropractic care when navigating fertility challenges.
As mentioned earlier, chiropractic care has the potential to enhance blood flow throughout the entire body mainly because spinal adjustments help stretch muscles and vertebrae. When the vertebrae of the spine are out of alignment, they can restrict blood flow throughout the body and vital internal systems, like male reproductive organs, can suffer from that reduced blood flow. For many men, infertility is a direct result of erectile dysfunction or other conditions that are closely associated with blood flow.
In addition, many cases of male infertility can be traced back to hormone imbalances, and we aren’t just talking about testosterone. Other hormones like lutenizing hormone and thyroid stimulating hormone play are essential for sperm production and libido. And as we’ve discussed, chiropractic adjustments can improve hormone regulation, which in turn can benefit your fertility status.
Adjunct Treatments and Therapies for Infertility That You Should Consider
Some chiropractic clinics are small operations that focus on providing quick adjustments, while others offer a variety of specialized therapies and unique techniques that can greatly support your physical health (including your fertility status). It’s best to look for a chiropractic specialist who goes beyond simple adjustments and pop-n-go approaches.
For example, you can find a handful of specialized chiropractic clinics and rehabilitation specialists throughout the United States that offer hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT). With this therapy, patients lie down in pressurized chambers that are filled with 100% pure oxygen. The patient breathes normally for an extended period of time in this setting. As a result, increased oxygen levels lead to highly oxygenated blood, which can help repair tissue, reduce inflammation, and promote the formation of new blood vessels.
As a result, the increased number of blood vessels can contribute to more optimal functioning within the reproductive system, and the reduced inflammation can improve egg and sperm quality and may even contribute to successful embryo implantation.
From acupuncture and naturopathic medicine to IV drip therapies and many more, you have plenty of options of alternative treatments adjacent to traditional chiropractic care that can benefit your fertility.
Your Routine Matters: Tips to Adopt Habits That Support Fertility
In the majority of cases, infertility concerns can be addressed and corrected without medical interventions, surgeries, or medications. How? By focusing on ways to improve the lifestyle that you live, develop healthier daily habits and behaviors, and rethinking the routines that are essential to your life. Here are a few actionable tips that you can implement today to support your fertility every day:
- Optimize Your Diet – Cut out overprocessed foods that offer no nutritional value and make sure the food you eat is nutritious and well-balanced. Foods like fruits and berries, avocados, salmon, beans, lentils, walnuts, and eggs offer great nutritional support not just for your overall health, but also for your fertility. If you have certain dietary restrictions or are too busy to fully optimize your diet, there are many fertility supplements on the market for both males and females that can provide an extra nutritional boost.
- Avoid Alcohol and Tobacco – Moderation is key, but excessive alcohol consumption has been shown to negatively affect fertility statuses in men and women. We all know that cigarettes are harmful for your long-term health, but did you know that they can also hurt your fertility status too? If you’re trying to have biological children, it’s in your best interest to avoid or limit alcohol and cigarettes.
- Get Regular Exercise – Individuals who lead sedentary lifestyles tend to experience infertility issues more often than those who lead active lifestyles. Aim to get at least 2 1/2 hours of moderate-intensity exercise each week to keep your physical health up and support your fertility status.
- Explore Stress Management Techniques – While chiropractic care can help alleviate stress for better blood flow, you can do this on your own too. Everyone handles stress differently, so it’s important to find practices and techniques that work best for you, but you may want to consider trying stress management practices like mindfulness, meditation, journaling, and yoga.
Everyone deserves to achieve their family planning goals, so if you and your partner are struggling to conceive and/or have been diagnosed with infertility factors, consider booking an appointment with your chiropractic care specialist. Those treatments could provide great support for your journey to parenthood. Take the first step towards a happy and healthy future today!
Author’s Byline: Nellia Melnyk, based in Denver, CO, brings extensive experience in digital marketing to the healthcare sector. Her valuable insights and expertise are shared through informative articles, and you can connect with her on LinkedIn for further healthcare-related tips and knowledge.