The connection between emotional health and infertility
At our natural medicine clinic near Milwaukee, we are strong believers in the mind-body connection. Researchers at University of California, Berkeley have discovered a connection between emotional health and infertility.
- First, stress boosts production of glucocorticoids, such as cortisol, which are also known as stress hormones.
- Then, these hormones inhibit production of the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) which can suppress ovulation, sperm production and sexual activity.
- Furthermore, research tells us that stress increases levels of a gonadotropin-inhibitory hormone (GnIH) that was discovered a decade ago. This reproductive hormone can directly inhibit the production of the body’s main “sex hormone,” GnRH.
We also know that there is a connection between emotional health and infertility caused by the physiological changes brought forth when the body is under the emotions that often accompany infertility: anxiety, fear and anger.
Couples who have ongoing fertility problems may experience physical problems, including headaches, insomnia and gastrointestinal problems.
Three tips to help you cope with emotional health and infertility
If you are experiencing any physical issues or mental issues such as lethargy, irritability, depression or lack of concentration, it’s time to take action.
- To help with emotional health and infertility, practice some form of rejuvenation, such as yoga or meditation. Meditation has been shown to help improve digestive issues, hormone levels and overall health. It is worth finding a qualified instructor or on-line series to help you learn this life-changing technique.
- Try to change the way you respond to stress. Let go of negative emotions and beliefs such as, “I’ll never get pregnant—I’m too old.” Instead, focus on the positive and what is possible, such as “I am older, but I am getting help with my fertility issues, and I’m working to get my mind and body in the best possible shape.”
- Emotional health and infertility need to be taken seriously. Seek counseling if you feel you are not coping well on your own. Speaking with a qualified therapist to help you learn stress management or coping techniques will be well worth your time.
Stacey Roberts, naturopath, PT, MH, is a nationally recognized natural fertility expert on staff at our natural medicine clinic near Milwaukee. She is here to help couples with emotional health and infertility issues. Contact us today for an appointment.