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Traditional Chinese Medicine and fertility

Bridget Wood

By Lauren Sanderson-Young

We all want to do what is best for our babies, even before we have conceived them. For some couples, this means making sure that you are eating well, exercising, giving up alcohol, making your home environment clean and stable financially. By ensuring that our homes and bodies are ready, everything is perfect. Right?

But how much importance do we place on our emotions? Do we think about how the stress of work and life accumulates in our bodies and how these emotional and energetic traits are passed on to our children?

In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), this emotional and energetic part of ourselves is called ‘Shen’. It resides energetically in the heart and helps us to cope with our everyday life eagerly with a sense of optimism and joy. But what happens to this part of each one of us when conceiving the baby so desired, becomes difficult; when we start to question our own body and what it is capable of.

In a woman, her energetic heart, uterus and kidneys are connected from a TCM point of view. In her heart is the Shen, giving her ability to produce healthy eggs and a safe space to grow a child in her uterus, and in her kidneys, the building blocks of life or ‘Prenatal Jing’. The quality of this and her partner's Prenatal Jing directly affects the health in all aspects of our children and what they will then pass on to their children and so on. The best way to ensure quality and conservation of this Prenatal Jing is balance. This includes physical, spiritual and emotional health. Excessive stress, anxiety, rushing and worry causes our stores to deplete faster which leaves us out of balance. From a TCM point of view this causes ‘disharmonies’ whereby the body is out of balance and therefore not in an optimal state. As time goes on these disharmonies spread to other areas of the body. When the Shen becomes disturbed in a woman and out of balance, it stops communicating with the uterus and kidneys. This lack of nourishment from one organ to another can lead to physical changes in a woman’s body that directly impact her fertility and therefore the health of future children. When any couple experiences issues with fertility there is a natural reaction of grief, anger, fear, stress and anxiety. These emotions further imbalance the body from a TCM stand point, and directly affect the quality of the Prenatal Jing and the health of the Shen.

We live in a time where hurdles to fertility can be overcome with medical intervention. Babies can be achieved without the need to even discuss emotions or how the stress of pre-conception will affect the growth and future health of our children.

In TCM, we want to help couples to become ‘healthy’ in all aspects before conception occurs. Our modern lives are busy and full of stress that we sometimes don’t even know is causing issues within our bodies. Through the use of regular Acupuncture along with Chinese Medicinal Herbs, both partners' bodies can be brought back into balance which can also mean into a fertile state. By optimising our Prenatal Jing and providing a safe space for our Shen we are passing the best that we can to our babies at the time of conception.

In this way Traditional Chinese Medicine can be utilised to pass on the best of who we are to our children and they can do the same for theirs.

Lauren Sanderson-Young came to Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Acupuncture firstly as a patient. She found through treatment that she was passionate about the practice of Acupuncture and went on to study a Bachelor of Health Science in TCM and Acupuncture.

Lauren has a strong passion for Women's Health in all areas and has developed this side of her practice including studying under Kristen Wolfe in THE FERTILE LIFE METHOD. Treating women and teenagers with a range of conditions, physical and emotional, including PCOS, Endometriosis, Adenomyosis and Menstruation irregularities to name a few and believes that often physical and emotional issues go hand in hand. Lauren therefore often treats multiple issues within a treatment session. 
She strongly believes in the education of young girls surrounding their bodies and menstrual health and what 'health' and 'health maintenance' mean within the bounds of Western Society.
Treating hormone imbalances, painful periods and PMS. Lauren combines her passion and knowledge to holistically treat patients using TCM, including offering dietary and lifestyle advice as an adjunct to treatment. 
Lauren's approach to Acupuncture is nurturing and gentle and she is always happy to talk about treatment and empower each of her patients individually. 
Having grown up on the Mornington Peninsula and now raising her children here, Lauren has a love for the area and working within her community. The opportunity to work at Mornington Chinese Medicine is a genuine thrill to her. 
Lauren is member of the Australian Acupuncture & Chinese Medicine Association (AACMA) and holds National Registration with the Australian Health Practitioner Registration Agency (AHPRA).