Meditation And Your Fertility Journey

by May 12, 2020

Struggling with infertility is a stressful experience for everyone. Although stress may not be the root cause of your infertility, it certainly isn’t helping the process. When it comes to getting pregnant it is truly a full mind and body journey and stress is a factor that affects both mental and physical health.

woman and plants

Studies have shown that stress contributes to infertility in several ways:

  • Reduced sex drive
  • Increased use of alcohol or other poor habits to attempt to cope
  • Potential for decreased ovulation
  • Possible reduced sperm count and low testosterone in men
  • Hormonal imbalances

 

Reducing stress is obviously important to helping you increase your chances of getting pregnant and for your overall health.

Of course, just saying you need to minimize stress in your life is a lot easier than actually making it happen. Learning coping mechanisms that you can use throughout your fertility journey and beyond is important. One of the best for reducing stress is meditation.

What is meditation

Meditation is a practice that has been used for centuries and has seen a resurgence over the past few decades. According to Psychology Today, meditation is “a mental exercise that trains attention and awareness”.

There are many different ways to meditate including guided meditation, movement meditation, and transcendental meditation. It is important to find the practice that works best for you and helps reduce your stress.

Using meditation in your fertility journey

Meditation takes time and practice and you may be hesitant to add it to your already full plate during this time in your life. So why is it important for your fertility journey?

First, the benefits of meditation help prepare your body for conception and parenthood. Most people see improvements in their body and mind including:

  • Reduced stress, anxiety, and depression
  • Increased emotional health
  • Reduced release of inflammatory body chemicals
  • Increased self and body awareness
  • Improved sleep
  • Decreased blood pressure

 

If you are trying to conceive there is naturally a major focus on your body’s health. You have the ovulation trackers, you have researched fertility diets, and see a doctor to evaluate your physical health. But what have you done to support the other side of the equation – your mental health?

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As we’ve said it is a full mind and body journey to conception and improving your mental health usually translates to improved physical health. For that reason, fertility meditation could be an important part of your fertility treatments.

How to start fertility meditation

If you aren’t sure what type of meditation is best for you start by researching a few different options. It can be helpful to begin with an app or a meditation video to get the hang of it.  If you enjoy being active then movement meditation might be your best fit. If you find peace in quiet time then focused attention meditation might be better.

Pick one to try and build it into your schedule. Give it some time to see if it is a good fit and whether you are feeling the benefits and enjoying the practice. Remember this is meant to be an ongoing part of your life and if you aren’t enjoying it you won’t stick with it.

Here are a few to resources to get you started:

 

It might take a few tries to find a meditation practice that fits your lifestyle and needs. Don’t give up and don’t stress about it. Reducing your stress is the whole point of this exercise after all.

✔️ Medically Reviewed by Banafsheh Kashani, MD, FACOG

Banafsheh Kashani, MD, FACOGBanafsheh Kashani, M.D., FACOG is a board-certified OB/GYN and specialist in reproductive endocrinology and infertility at Eden Fertility Centers, and has been treating couples and individuals with infertility since 2014. Prior to joining Eden Centers for Advanced Fertility, she was practicing as a top fertility specialist at Kaiser Permanente in Orange County and Reproductive Fertility Center. Dr. Kashani has received numerous awards throughout her years of study and medical training. 

Dr. Kashani has conducted extensive research in female reproduction, with a specific focus on the endometrium and implantation. Additionally, Dr. Kashani has authored papers in the areas of fertility preservation, and fertility in women with PCOS and Turners syndrome. She also was part of a large SART-CORS study evaluating the trend in frozen embryo transfers and success rates.

Dr. Kashani is a fellow of the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. In addition, she is a diplomat of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology and an active member of the American Society of Reproductive Medicine (ASRM) and Pacific Coast Reproductive Society (PCRS). She is also a member of the Society of Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility (SREI).

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