Infertility

According to the CDC, 1 in 5 women ages 15-49 with no prior births struggle with infertility. Infertility is defined as the inability to conceive after one year of trying.

If the fact that 20% of women trying to have children struggle with infertility is not alarming enough, the rate at which infertility has increased over the past few decades has skyrocketed.


Potential Contributing Factors

For Women
– Ovulation issues, caused by things such as Polycystic Ovary Syndrome,
– Thyroid problems such as hypothyroidism, hyperthyroidism, or the presence of thyroid antibodies.
 Fallopian tube or uterus issues, such as uterine polyps, pelvic inflammatory disease, scar tissue, endometriosis, or a previous ectopic pregnancy.

For Men
– Gonad disorders.
– Sperm transport disorders
.
– Hypothalamic or pituitary disorders.
– Exposure to testosterone, such as injections for low testosterone, or for the sake of building muscle.
– Frequent exposure of the testes to high temperatures, such as use of a sauna, hot tub, or prolonged use of a wheelchair.
– Exposure to environmental toxins including exposure to pesticides, lead, cadmium, or mercury.

For Anyone
– Age. Though age is typically a more important factor for women, it plays a role for both men and women in potentially making conception more difficult. For men, the risk of infertility is most notable for those over 40; for women, the likelihood of conception begins to decline more rapidly around age 35.
– Being overweight or obese. Though there is no one clear connection between being overweight or obese and infertility, there is ample research showing a strong correlation between the two in both men and women.
– Exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals (EDCs), which can be found in plastic bottles, tap water, food storage containers, children’s toys, sunscreen, soaps, perfume/cologne, cleaning products, food colorings, processed foods, and several other sources that are parts of everyday life for most people.
– Exposure to radiation including radio frequency electromagnetic fields emitted by things such as cell phones, cell phone towers, WIFI, laptops, radios, TV broadcast, microwave ovens, and radar.
– Stress. Functionally, there are two parts to the nervous system: the sympathetic nervous system (“fight or flight”) and the parasympathetic nervous system (“rest, digest, and heal”). The sympathetic nervous system is designed to command the body to react to immanent danger—your heart rate and blood pressure go up, your breath rate increases, your pupils dilate, and blood is directed more toward your extremities than internal organs. In this state, your body doesn’t focus on proper digestion, relaxation, or reproduction—those fall within the domain of the parasympathetic nervous system. Stress puts the body in a sympathetic state. If someone is dealing with chronic stress that is causing them to stay in a sympathetic state for an extended period of time, then the message their body is constantly receiving is something to the effect of “we’re in danger,” and if that’s the case, then reproduction will not be a priority, and infertility will be a possible result, particularly in women.


Can Chiropractic Help?

Though the cause infertility as a whole—and often with individual cases—cannot be narrowed down to a single factor, whenever there is any degree of dysfunction in the body, we know that there is some degree of imbalance in the central nervous system as well, as it is the master control center of the body, and is constantly sending messages to every cell, tissue, and organ in the body, and constantly receiving messages from them as well.

At Greater Life Chiropractic, we are neurologically-based, meaning that our primary focus is the function of your central nervous system. You are created in such a way that if your brain is able to clearly communicate with the rest of your body (and vice versa), then your body has the potential to heal from above, down, inside, out, and function properly! Chiropractic adjustments help your body to remove the interference between the brain and the rest of the body, which balances the overall function of the nervous system, and improves your body’s ability to properly adapt to the various stresses that you face throughout life. Improved adaptability means less overall time spent in a sympathetic state, which increases the odds that someone will see improvement with chronic issues, including fertility.

One case series reported three instances where women with a history of fertility issues presented for chiropractic care, two of whom had previously tried medically-assisted methods with no success. After receiving chiropractic care for the removal of vertebral subluxation, all three women were able to conceive and carry their pregnancies to full-term! Another case study reported two women who presented for chiropractic care after being deemed “medically infertile.” During the course of their chiropractic care, both women were able to conceive.