If you are trying to conceive a baby, there are many different holistic and alternative treatment options that can help along the way to a positive EPT.
Craniosacral therapy is another such therapy; and it is gaining attention these days for its effectiveness in treating infertility, as well as, helping with fertility overall.
In this article, we are going to define infertility, explore its causes, discover how craniosacral therapy can be beneficial, the number of recommended sessions, and what it might cost.
Infertility: How is it Defined?
A woman is considered infertile if she is unable to conceive after having regular unprotected sex with her partner for one year. While a woman or man or both can be the cause of infertility, in some cases, the cause is not identified.
What Causes Infertility?
There are both female and male-related factors when it comes to infertility.
7 Common Factors of Infertility in Women:
Here is a list of the seven most common factors of infertility in women:
- Irregular ovulation
- Uterus abnormalities
- Blocked fallopian tubes
- Misaligned pelvis
- Hormonal problems
- Lymphatic congestion
7 Common Factors of Infertility in Men:
Here is a list of the seven most common factors of infertility in men:
- Varicocele, a condition in which the veins on the testicle are too large impacting the shape and count of sperm
- Low sperm count
- Hormone imbalances
- Sperm transport issues
- Blockages in reproductive organs
- Premature ejaculation
Low sperm count in men can be due to the use of alcohol and tobacco, and also due to exposure to radiation. Groin injury and genetic factors also play a role in low sperm count.
How Craniosacral Therapy Works For Infertility
Chronic stress can cause infertility in both men and women. According to one study, stress can negatively affect reproductive function in two main ways:
- Suppressing libido
- Increasing risk of ovarian cysts
To know how stress can affect fertility and how craniosacral therapy can be effective for treating infertility, you need to know how all this works.
When you experience chronic stress, your nervous system goes into fight-or-flight mode, which is the sympathetic state of the nervous system. When the mind is stress-free, your body is in the parasympathetic state; the state that supports rest improves digestion and supports reproductive health.
In cases of chronic stress, the body is constantly in a fight-or-flight mode, that is, in the sympathetic state. As it goes on, the body responds in the same way to any threat, big or small, thus keeping you perpetually stressed.
It is during this state of mind and body that your digestive function declines. You sleep little and the chances of reproduction become less. Chronic stress also causes the pelvic muscles to contract to lead to structural changes of the pelvis (tipped uterus).
This can cause reproductive organs to receive less blood supply, which again, makes it difficult to get pregnant. In short, those with chronic stress are highly susceptible to fertility issues.
Craniosacral therapy reduces stress in women and supports the healthy function of the parasympathetic system. This hands-on, light-touch therapy clears blockages that exist in the central nervous system. The craniosacral therapy practitioner gently feels certain locations of the body to assess the movement and rhythm of cerebrospinal fluid around the brain and spinal cord. This technique releases any restrictions in the craniosacral system that may affect the flow of fluid; thereby, releasing stress and supporting hormonal balance. When the therapy is received as prescribed, the ability to manage stress levels improves considerably.
You will be able to rest sufficiently, acquire a relaxed state of mind and a healthy digestive system, and improve the function of your reproductive organs yielding you the opportunity for a healthy pregnancy and delivery.
How Effective is Craniosacral Therapy for Increasing Fertility
Craniosacral therapy can be very effective for increasing fertility. In a study involving 10 infertile women between the ages of 28 to 41, the success rate was 6 out of 10 for achieving pregnancy:
All six of them conceived with a period of three months from the termination of craniosacral treatment and had a successful delivery at full term.
During the treatment process, dysfunction in the sacrum was rectified, pelvic asymmetry was treated, lymph drainage was applied, and trigger points within and around the pelvis were treated.
Women involved in the studies received treatment sessions twice a week until the practitioner was satisfied that there were no restrictions.
In addition, a study on the effectiveness of craniosacral therapy for treating fibromyalgia further reinforces that the therapy relieves anxiety and depression, and improves the quality of sleep. This again helps to address the causes associated with infertility.
How Long Does Craniosacral Therapy Take To Treat Infertility
A craniosacral therapy session typically lasts for about one hour. It is advised you attend therapy twice a week until your practitioner feels there are no restrictions, and the future mom is absolutely ready for pregnancy.
The average recommended number of sessions is 3-10. However, each person is different, and communicating with your craniosacral therapy practitioner about your individualized treatment plan is always a good idea.
In addition, if you are utilizing other holistic and/or conventional treatments to achieve pregnancy, it is always important to inform all practitioners and doctors of the different modalities you are implementing. This will ensure that everyone is on the same page when it comes to your overall well-being.
Results from different studies, including the one aforementioned, substantiate a viable pregnancy resulting from the use of craniosacral therapy. Within a year of beginning treatment, women who choose this therapy significantly increase their chances of becoming pregnant,.
The average price per session in the United States is $70-$170. When trying to become pregnant, you will want to discuss if the practitioner you choose has prenatal experience or training. This is important because once you are pregnant, having a craniosacral therapy practitioner who has prenatal training can continue to serve your needs as you journey through motherhood.
It is also important to note that some practitioners may offer discounts or packages. Be sure to ask. For more information, read: How Much Does Craniosacral Therapy Cost?
J Am Osteopath Association (2012) Combined Manual Therapy Techniques for the Treatment of Women with Infertility: A Case Series, 112 (10), 680-685. Retrieved April 24, 2019, from https://www.barralinstitute.com/docs/research/maryellenkrampposterpres2014csm.pdf
Mataran-Penarrocha, Guillermo A (2009) Influence of Craniosacral Therapy on Anxiety, Depression, and Quality of Life in Patients with Fibromyalgia, Hindawi Publishing Corporation, Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2011. Retrieved April 24, 2019, from https://www.iahe.com/docs/articles/Article_-_CST_and_Fibromyalgia-Anxiety-Depression_Study.pdf
Nijis, P., Koninckx, P. R., Verstraeten D., Mullens. A., Nicasy H. (1984), Psychological factors of female infertility, European Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Biology, 18, 375-379. Retrieved April 24, 2019, from https://www.ejog.org/article/0028-2243(84)90060-1/pdf
Sominsky, Luba; Hodgson, Deborah M. (2017). Linking Stress and Infertility: A Novel Role for Ghrelin, Endocrine Reviews, 38 (5), 432-467. Retrieved April 24, 2019, from https://academic.oup.com/edrv/article/38/5/432/4049496