Tell me about infertility & hormones
Infertility and hormones are two unique entities that need individual attention before we do a thorough analysis into how hormones can affect your ability to conceive.
Fertility reflexology specialises in improving your hormonal balance, so ultimately you get pregnant.
Reflexology to improve fertility works in the same way as standard reflexology because it uses acupressure points on your feet to remove blockages from your system that prevent your body from working optimally.
Your MAR fertility reflexologist, Karen, can work alongside your doctor. All you need to do is feed their diagnosis through to her and she will adapt to support their work. This applies whether you’re undergoing infertility treatments such as IVF, IUI or IXY. She can also advise of ways to improve your BMI to improve your chances of a successful fertility treatment.
However, if you’d prefer to have reflexology independently of formal treatment to help you conceive naturally, we can focus on improving your chances of a natural conception. Either is fine.
Karen Botha MAR
Your Association of Reflexologist’s Therapist
Questions & Answers
Let's start with infertility
We know the feeling. You’re trying your hardest, and yet all those fertility tests are still negative. Every month. If this devastating cycle has been ongoing for 12 months or more, then officially you’re classed as ‘infertile’. That doesn’t mean that you can never get pregnant. Just that they officially acknowledged your struggle. This is the start of your infertility journey with the doctors.
Secondary infertility is when you’ve already had a baby, but this time around you’re struggling. Again, the 12 month mark is the marker in the sand.
While all health authorities have their own rules about when you can apply for NHS fertility treatment they will require you to have been trying to get pregnant for a minimum of one year. Often more.
By the way. You can begin this reflexology any time you like to improve your overall wellness and natural fertility. It also prepares your body for e.g. IVF.
In terms of hormones, these are the essence of the causes of infertility because they are the messages that inform us we need to get pregnant. If they run in the wrong order, at the wrong time, too many or too few, they’re just like a tube carriage. They don’t do their job properly, and our body doesn’t get the message that we want to get pregnant.
Reflexology can balance hormones. So then the process of our body running smoothly improves our natural fertility.
This is important. ‘Fertility hormones’ do not just relate to female infertility. Hormones affect a man’s fertility too. In fact, a poor sperm test is often easier, and faster, to solve than female fertility issues. We can help men with nutrition and lifestyle advice in their fertility reflexology session.
Conditions related to hormonal imbalances that we’ve seen respond well to reflexology
*Stress anxiety and insomnia
*Irregular/ heavy periods or interrupted or non-existent cycles
*PMS (pre-menstrual syndrome)
*Dysmenorrhea (painful period cramps)
*Cervical problems e.g. overproduction of mucus and blocking
*Polycystic ovaries (PCOS)
*Pelvic inflammatory disease (inc. infection of any part of the female reproductive tract)
Can a hormonal imbalance cause infertility?
Of course. Conditions caused by hormonal imbalances such as PCOS are among the leading causes of being infertile.
That’s not to say you can’t still get pregnant when you have PCOS, but it can be a big issue.
What are barriers to fertility hormones working optimally?
*PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome)
*Hormone imbalance that affects ovulation
*STI’s and other infections/ growths
*Unhealthy body weight
*We will discuss your style of living
Your reflexologist at Essential Feeling, Karen, understands that it’s important to balance an ideal lifestyle scenario with what is realistic.
Sure, you want to get pregnant, but Karen isn’t under any illusions about how challenging external pressures can be. You can’t give up work because you’d like to have a baby — we have bills and responsibilities. These don’t evaporate.
Karen will guide you within these parameters. She doesn’t expect perfection. She is there to give you options and help you make the decisions that are right for you. She can do this either individually, or together as part of a couple’s fertility treatment.
What hormones should be tested for infertility?
We’re not doctors, and we don’t pertain to be. We work with your medical consultant, using their diagnosis to direct our reflexology programme. We don’t do any medical tests and won’t direct your consultant on how to do their job. This complementary therapy works alongside medicine.
This collaborative approach is how we improve your natural fertility.
If you’re not getting the answers you need though, here’s a quick guide on some common tests for infertility.
* FSH (follicle-stimulating hormone) releases the egg from your ovary, and along with LH (luteinizing hormone) stimulates ovulation.
If these reserves are low, as they tend to be in e.g. age related infertility, then this is an indicator that your natural fertility will be a problem.
Can too much oestrogen cause infertility?
Oestrogen levels affect whether and how well, you ovulate. This directly affects your fertility window. If your fertility window (amount of time you’re ovulating) is on the short side, there’s not enough time for your body to do everything it needs to before the window closes. So you move to the next stage without having done everything you needed in the preceding one.
Likewise, if you ovulate too early, then you haven’t had enough time to build up the hormone reserves you need to produce a follicle that contains an egg mature enough to be fertilised. Leave it too long and the egg has gone past its sell by date. Kind of. You get the picture.
High oestrogen levels can also prevent conception by leading to polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) or endometriosis.
Karen at Essential Feeling has a track record of helping her client’s suffering with all the above issues.
* What is the pituitary gland?
The pituitary gland is part of the endocrine system, which is the collective name for all the glands in our body which deal with distributing hormonal messages.
This gland is a small, pea-sized gland at the base of the brain. It’s referred to as the body’s master gland because it controls/ stimulates all the other hormone secreting glands.
How does reflexology help to treat infertility?
By balancing your hormones, reflexology becomes one of the most relaxing of infertility treatments because not only are you ‘in tune’ at the end of your sessions, but you’re also dealing with the hormonal cause of female infertility.
What are the causes of female infertility?
As well as the list above, there are many lifestyle factors that can affect how easily it is for you to conceive.
These include what we eat, how we live and how we allow the actions of other people to affect us. Karen, your reflexologist will give you lifestyle hints and tips as you go through your sessions. She’ll combine this with counselling to help you through the tough times and overall ensure you are in the best mental place possible. This holistic approach to your fertility helps your body improve what is within your control.
Hormonal infertility can cause some common side effects.
Below are some side effects that may be a precursor to spotting infertility in women.
*heavy, long or painful periods
*dark or light menstrual blood
*hormonal changes, e.g. weight change, acne, facial hair
*underlying medical conditions
Can treatment for infertility result in pregnancy?
Approx 15% of couples struggle with running a full-term pregnancy. Whilst that’s many people, you can still end up feeling isolated. Because people dealing with infertility, don’t talk about it.
However, you don’t have to suffer in silence.
Karen is a certified counsellor. You can chat through your worst thoughts and fears with her within a safe and private environment.
This helps you feel better, before we even start with the intervention of reflexology on infertility and hormones.
That said, it’s important to understand that Karen isn’t a miracle worker. The system won’t work if all you do is come along to a session once a week. Well, it might, but you’re one of the lucky ones! To have the best chance of success, you will need to implement the recommendations.
For sure, we’ll work with you on solutions that fit your responsibilities. You are the only one who can put these into action.
We’ve known a lot of women over the years who turn up and then continue to binge drink, work excessively (really excessively) and then wonder why their fertility is still under strain.
Reflexology is great, but this is part of a package. We can give you the tips, but you need to create the behaviour that is conducive to improving your natural fertility.
Does reflexology help in IVF infertility cases?
If you’re having assisted conception, such as IVF, IUI or IXY, then reflexology alongside this is a brilliant choice. By balancing your hormones before you start, you’re giving your consultant a great base from which to start. Then throughout your drugs, we’ll leave your hormonal system alone and allow the doctors to do their work. Once you’ve had implantation, we’ll then pick up again to once again balance your hormones and leave you without the side effects of e.g. morning sickness.
How do I factor infertility and treating it into my life?
This is easy. When you have fertility reflexology with Karen, she will listen to you. Karen will chat with you until she understands the set of commitments that are unique to your life.
She will only make suggestions about how you can improve your natural fertility that are actually realistic for you to implement.
Karen believes that a series of minor changes that are easy for you to stick to, are better than a few big ones that create a level of stress that we’re trying to avoid. Adding to your stress levels is counter-intuitive.
It’s this pragmatic approach which helps improve your chance of carrying a baby full term.
Want an appointment today?
If you would like to book a last-minute appointment, please text us on 07757 946023 and we’ll try our best to sort something out within 24 hours.
Once you book
We’ll send over everything you need including consultation form and directions.
We have free off street parking directly outside our treatment rooms.
Get IN Touch
Working with Harley Street & Knightsbridge Cosmetic Surgeons
Read about our work