What is infertility?
Infertility is any condition of the body, especially the reproductive system, that can prevent the conception or birth of children. It can be tied to a number of factors in both men and women, and can have both emotional and physical consequences, especially for people who would like to have a family. Infertility treatment can be expensive and painful, especially for women, and medications can be both costly and only provide short-term relief for long-term problems.
What is erectile dysfunction?
Erectile dysfunction, also known as ED or impotence, is a condition in men characterized by the inability to get or sustain an erection of the penis sufficiently enough to have sex. It can stem from physical issues such as heart disease, high blood pressure, or diabetes, or from emotional issues like depression and anxiety. Smoking cigarettes and alcohol use can also have an effect on impotence, as can many medications. ED is incredibly common and highly treatable, but many men are uncomfortable discussing it with their doctors because they are embarrassed to admit it is a problem.
What is dysmenorrhea?
Dysmenorrhea is a big word that means painful menstruation, and includes everything that can make a period uncomfortable, such as:
Dysmenorrhea is a leading cause of infertility in women.
There are officially two types of dysmenorrhea: primary and secondary. Primary is due to the production of prostaglandins, natural substances that line the uterus. When the lining of the uterus starts to shed during the period, prostaglandins are released, and may cause the uterus to contract, causing cramps. They can also cause pelvic congestion due to blood pooling by dilating the arteries and veins, which can mean pain, heaviness, and a possible drop in blood pressure. Secondary dysmenorrhea is generally caused by endometriosis, leiomyoma, adenomyosis, or ovarian cysts.
Excessively painful menstruation should always be evaluated by your primary care physician, in case there is a serious underlying issue such as endometriosis, uterine infection, or a problem with uterine anatomy.
How can acupuncture and Oriental medicine help with infertility?
Instead of treating the symptoms with medications, Oriental medicine and acupuncture get to the root cause of the issues that lead to infertility. In general, acupuncture and Oriental medicine focus on returning blood flow to organs and regulating that blood flow. This can be extremely helpful for those experiencing erectile dysfunction or heavy periods. Acupuncture can help reduce pain in ways that are just as effective as over-the-counter anti-inflammatories, without the side effects. Herbal medicine may also help to regulate hormones and balance other problems that can arise from infertility.
Dr. Ko and his team of professionals always find individualized treatments for those suffering from infertility. If you’re ready to try Oriental medicine for your infertility issues, make an appointment today.
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