Fertility goes far beyond conception. It isn’t as simple as making the sperm meet the egg at the right time. In Canada, as many as 1 in 6 couples are dealing with fertility issues. Having a baby is the sum of many moving parts, aligning at exactly the right time, in exactly the right way. Sometimes it can be really obvious why a couple can’t get pregnant. For example, the woman may have no fallopian tubes or the man may have a very low sperm count. Or the couple may have two uteruses and no sperm. In these cases, the treatment is often obvious. But many couples receive a diagnosis of “unexplained infertility” where the lab tests and diagnostic procedures all come back within normal limits.
In our experience at the Toronto Reproductive Acupuncture Clinic, we have found that in cases of unexplained infertility, it is often a lot of “little things”. These things on their own may not be a significant contributor to the overall health picture, but a few of these little things can add up to some pretty frustrating results. We look at the whole person when we are determining the reasons why they may not be getting pregnant easily. If we observe the body and listen very carefully, there are usually signs present which can be improved. Here are a few ways that your body may be sending you the message that you aren't as fertile as you may think.
You are getting fewer than 7-8 hours of good quality sleep each night
Sleep is one of the most crucial aspects of health and longevity. There are many important hormonal processes that occur during sleep. If these processes are interrupted (or not allowed to happen at all) it can lead to hormonal imbalances. This can affect both egg and sperm quality/production as well. 
You have a short or long menstrual cycle
Many women are unaware that the length of their menstrual cycle can have a huge impact on their fertility. Ideally, they menstrual cycle should be between 28-32 days in length. This means that the egg matures and releases at the right time and there is enough time for the embryo to properly implant in the lining of the uterus. If menstrual bleeding occurs either too early or too late, it can decrease chances of having a healthy baby by up to 50%. 
You have PMS and cramping
PMS and period pain are very common but are not a part of healthy physiology. Besides being an annoyance, they can both indicate deeper hormonal imbalances or even serious physiological conditions (such as endometriosis or uterine polyps). Infertile women tend to experience these types of symptoms a lot more commonly than women who conceive easily. 
Your flow is light
Women don’t typically mind having lighter bleeding during their periods but it can be an indicator that the uterine lining isn’t as healthy as it could be - which can negatively impact implantation. It is also a direct reflection of the quality of blood throughout the entire body. It has been shown in research that 4-5 days of moderate menstrual bleeding is optimal for healthy conception. 
What can you do about it?
Most of the time, simply making the best lifestyle choices possible can significantly improve these things. Exercising moderately, limiting alcohol consumption to 1-2 drinks per week, giving yourself enough time to sleep and eating a healthy diet are all major contributors to your fertility and overall health.
Finding that you’re doing everything right but still no results? We can help. The Toronto Reproductive Acupuncture Clinic is a group of expertly trained and experienced Acupuncturists, Naturopaths and Chinese Medicine Doctors with an exclusive focus on reproductive health. We have an extensive knowledge of both natural and conventional reproductive medicine. We provide solutions using tools such as acupuncture, herbs, supplements, nutrition and lifestyle changes. We offer a complimentary 30 minute consultation to all new parents. Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you optimize your fertile potential.
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