Visiting a naturopath to support your fertility goals is a big step. Entrusting someone to guide & support you in the journey to making this much-wanted baby is not a decision made lightly.
Furthermore, an initial consultation can be lengthy as it is an opportunity for the naturopath to assess all aspects of you holistically and try to work out what areas of you and your life may be impacting your fertility.
So, here’s how to make the most out of your fertility naturopathic consultation:
1. Before making a booking, ensure your naturopath is appropriately qualified. Qualifications should be easily found on their website (a Bachelor degree is ideal) and check they belong to a natural health association.
2. Come armed with questions! Education is empowerment and a naturopaths’ major role is educating you to enable you to care for your own health.
3. Track your menstrual cycle. Your naturopath is going to ask you lots of questions about your menstrual cycle and will want to know details, so having this information available is helpful. There are many great apps to track this, or if you are more of a paper person, contact me to have a printable menstrual tracking chart emailed to you.
• Note – Day 1 is the first full day of proper flow (whatever that is for you). If your period starts in the evening, class the next day as Day 1, and total cycle length is Day 1 of your period through to the next Day 1. If you have spotting leading up to full flow, this is important information for the naturopath and should be noted, but it’s not the start of your actual period. Note down as much information as you can, such as estimated blood volume (through the number of tampon/pad changes). Track and note blood colour, consistency, menstrual cramps and intensity, changes in cervical mucus, spotting outside of your period, mood changes, cravings, bowel changes, when you had intercourse.
• If you’ve been temperature charting, that’s great, bring that information with you. However, this is not completely necessary prior to the first consultation.
4. Collate your personal medical information. This is for those already on their journey. If you have nothing – that’s ok. If your medical history is extensive an approximated timeline is helpful.
5. If you’ve already been doing IVF bring details about the IVF cycles. Including the number of cycles, type of cycles, how many eggs were collected on each, how many fertilised, how many embryos were created/transferred/frozen, any pregnancies (including biochemical pregnancies) and any other relevant information.
6. If you have one, bring a copy of your partner’s semen analysis. Don’t forget, creating a healthy pregnancy is 50% the female, 50% the male, so having the information about what is going on with the sperm will help. If you don’t have this, don’t worry.
7. Note down the supplements or prescription medication you currently take, including brands, dosage, length of time of taking, and reason for taking. This is to ensure safety against what naturopathic herbs or supplements may be recommended.
8. Start noticing your digestion and bowel habits. Naturopaths love to talk about poo! It gives us a clue as to what is going on with your digestion. Your digestion and microbiome health are relevant in maintaining hormonal balance. This will be discussed during your consultation. Take more notice of what’s happening in the days prior to your consultation.
Remember, a fertility naturopathic consultation is never meant to be scary, judgemental, or overwhelming. It’s an opportunity for fresh eyes on your situation to evaluate what areas of your life may be impacting your fertility and to educate, guide and support you through those changes, wherever you are on that journey.
If you have any questions specific to your case or want to explore how a naturopath may help, I encourage you to book a free 15-minute phone consultation to discuss your individual situation.
In health and happiness
Sage Naturopathics (Burleigh Heads, Gold Coast)