Experiences of complementary and alternative medicines and therapies and lifestyle changes

Several people we talked with had experiences of trying complementary and alternative medicines and therapies (CAM/T) before or while trying to conceive, or during fertility treatment. Some medicines or therapies were for underlying conditions such as PCOS or endometriosis. The most common CAM/T used were acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, naturopathy, and supplements. Experiences were mixed. Most people stopped treatments after finding them ineffective, though a few commented on other benefits such as relaxation or simply finding their CAM/T treatment provider a good ‘sounding board’ to discuss fertility with.

Making lifestyle changes was also a common experience, particularly trying to eat more healthily, give up alcohol or caffeine, and exercise. A few people talked about encouraging their male partners to improve their lifestyle as well.

Further information

Complementary and alternative therapies – Human Reproduction and Embryology Authority (HFEA), UK
Lifestyle – Your Fertility, Australia