Posts tagged infertility
Fertility Hormones: which to test + what they all mean

Blood work is a valuable tool to quantify hormone levels and fertility markers, which together give insight as to how our ovaries are functioning and the quality of the eggs they contain. If you are currently trying to conceive or thinking about getting pregnant in the next few years, testing your hormones can give you a lot of helpful information that will assist you in making informed decisions about your family planning.

If you’re new to learning about these hormones then all the abbreviations and numbers are enough to leave you feeling dizzy, but I’m going to explain what they mean for your health and fertility, and let you know exactly how you can test them yourself.

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What is the Fertile Window?

I always joke with my patients about the myths of ovulation, one of the main ones being - “today is the day, we’ve got to have sex right NOW!” There’s an episode of Friends with Monica and Chandler that comes to mind.

In reality, that’s not really how it works. Many people are surprised to find out that sperm can survive for up to 5 days in the female body during the fertile window. And because fertilization happens within 24 hours of ovulation, the full fertile window is actually 7 days long.

Let’s talk about how to figure out when your fertile window starts and ends.

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Crystals for Fertility, Cycle Health & Pregnancy

As an acupuncturist I work with crystals quite a bit and since my speciality is uterine health I tend to use mostly stones that have an effect on fertility, balancing hormones, the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, or postpartum. I'll tell you about some of my favorites and if any of them call to you, they're all available in my online store

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Using OPKs to Pinpoint Ovulation

Whether you're trying to conceive or you want to track your cycle to better understand your body, OPKs (Ovulation Predictor Kits) are commonly used to determine when you ovulate based on hormones released by your body. They are one of my favorite ways of determining ovulation because they are fairly easy to use and pretty damn accurate, but of course they do come with a few perimeters and a bit of a learning curve.

Which ones to buy? When to test and how? And what do these tiny pee strips actually mean? I'm going to explain it all for you right now.

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How Do STIs Affect Fertility?

Many women who are trying to conceive are prepared to chart their cycle, take a prenatal vitamin, and clean up their diet, but what about the effect of sexually transmitted infections (STIs) on fertility? Some of the most common STIs can have a profound effect on getting pregnant and in some cases require treatment before conception can occur. But not to worry, I'm going to break it all down for you.

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Considering Freezing Your Eggs? What you Need to Know

With so many women choosing to have children later in life, egg freezing (or its fancier name, oocyte cryopreservation) is becoming more and more popular. Even with its gain in popularity, I find women's views of the process tend to be riddled with misinformation and myths.

Often considered a feminist beacon of hope, egg freezing can allow women to have more control over their reproductive options, extending the window they would normally be able to get pregnant, and allowing more flexibility for when they choose to build a family. Yet so few women are accurately informed about what the whole process actually looks like, who it works best for, and how to improve their chances at successfully conceiving.

It's my mission to clear up that misinformation, debunk those myths, and give women real, actionable information about their options. That way, they can feel empowered to make informed decisions about their health.

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What is Secondary Infertility?

Even if you're super familiar with fertility terms and reproductive health, secondary infertility doesn't get talked about all that much, so you may not have heard of it. Primary infertility refers to when someone has trouble getting pregnant the first time, while secondary infertility effects those who have already had a child and are having trouble conceiving again.

It may seem like a confusing scenario, if someone could conceive once, why can't they conceive again? But it's actually quite a common condition that I treat regularly.

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Best Bone Broth Ever!

If you read my article about Holistic Health during Cold & Flu Season, then I've already told you why adding bone broth to your diet is so important, but it's not just for the fall and wintertime. I recommend bone broth all year round, to patients, to friends, to family members, and there's one simple reason - it has so many benefits!

Joint pain? Digestive upset? Low energy? Compromised immunity? Feeling anxious? Menstrual cramps? Recovering from illness or injury? Yep, bone broth can help! In fact drinking bone broth regularly has quickly become the single most common recommendation I give.

I've been making bone broth at home for years now and I'm proud to say I've gotten lots of other folks doing it too. I've refined my recipe into seriously the best bone broth ever and I want to share it with you so you can make it too!

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Egg Quality vs. Age: what you've been told is wrong

Women are born with ovaries full of all the eggs they'll ever have, unlike men who produce sperm non-stop for most of their lives. It's been the popular belief up until recently that women's eggs age as they do, and somewhere between the 35 and 45 they lose much of their viability. But, much to our surprise, recent research has actually proven much of that to be wrong!

Chromosomal abnormalities and poor egg quality are no longer a pre-determined diagnosis for women of "advanced maternal age." We know now that there is much to be done to improve how our hormones and ovaries function, and therefore produce healthy eggs, even over the age of 40!

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