Acupuncture is an ancient form of medicine that originated in Asia some 5000 years ago. Just as blood travels through vessels, distinct energy pathways exist along which we find almost 400 points where the Qi, or vital energy of the body, can be accessed and manipulated. With hair-fine needles, the acupuncturist can help the body regenerate or redirect the Qi at specifically chosen points. The unhindered flow of Qi and blood throughout the body ensures homeostasis, much like the way a smooth flowing river will irrigate a landscape. If the body is deficient, there is not enough Qi to nourish all aspects of the body sufficiently. Likewise, if the Qi is obstructed it is unable to reach affected areas and imbalances arise. Acupuncture and Chinese medicine, including herbs can improve the quality of blood and Qi, thereby correcting imbalances and improving one’s constitution over time. These therapies can be used preventively, or as a way to manage chronic and acute conditions. Perhaps the most elusive yet powerful aspect of Chinese medicine is its ability to treat mental- emotional issues, affirmation that the mind and the body are in no way separate.
Many studies have shown acupuncture’s ability to help improve conditions for fertility. We know that treatment can bring the body out of the stress response into the relaxation response. This shift has a normalizing effect on the body overall, on hormone levels, cortisol levels, blood flow, and the nervous system as a whole. Acupuncture needles can increase blood flow to the uterus, stimulate ovulation, improve egg quality and regulate the period. Similarly, Chinese medicine can support a healthy pregnancy, increasing likelihood for good birth position, efficient labor, and minimal pre and post natal symptoms. All of this benefit with little to no side effects!
What eludes western medicine is acupuncture’s ability to access the ancient hardwiring of the human body. The body, itself a microcosm of the natural world, has an innate wisdom to heal. Just as we see the resiliency of nature after devastation or disturbance, we should also be thankful and trust that our bodies are capable of the same. Alternative therapies such as acupuncture and herbs can clear the way for this process.