Do you do home visits?

In need of a massage after you have given birth to bub but finding it inconvenient to come into our practice? Fertile Ground Health Group offers home visits as well as hospital visits for all postnatal massage services up to 6 weeks post birth. To book a home or hospital visit please contact reception on (03) 9419 9988 or email reception@fertileground.com.au. Subject to suburb availability and occasionally travel fees will apply.

Instructions for cooking your Chinese medicine herbal prescription.

The cooking pot should be either glass, ceramic, or enamel. Inexpensive traditional Chinese ceramic cooking pots are available at the clinic and should be soaked for 3 hours prior to first use.

See your herbal prescription for any variations to the length of time for cooking the herbs (you will generally be informed of any differences both at your consultation and when the herbs are being dispensed).

1. Place herbs in a pot and cover with ___ cups of water (amount differs between different formulas).

2. Bring to the boil, then turn down and simmer until 3 cups remain.

3. Strain liquid to remove the dregs.

4. Take 250ml/day, storing unused portions in a sealed glass container in the fridge (re-heat before consuming). Each bag supplies enough liquid for 3 days.

Granulated herbs are simply added to warm water and down the hatch! Follow with something tasty.

The herbs are generally not considered to be delicious! Drink the recommended dose quickly and follow with something you prefer the taste of. It’s a moment of discomfort for a maximum effect.

Can I have acupuncture to help induce my labour if I have never had acupuncture before?

Yes! We generally recommend our patients come for birth preparation up to six weeks prior to their due date. This enables us to progressively ensure your body is in top condition and ready to birth – hopefully going into labour naturally, if that is what you choose. Research has shown that this approach can reduce labour times and make contractions more effective.

Ideally we like to see you before there is pressure to go into labour, but this is not always possible. Not everyone knows about this type of birth preparation and we receive many referrals from obstetricians, midwives and birth centres recommending women for last minute natural induction. Acupuncture can be very effective, particularly if you are at or past your due dates. You will find more information about acupuncture induction here and you might also be interested to read about our massage induction treatments as well. We find they work well together and many people undertake both to cover all their bases, indulge in the ultimate relaxation prior to the arrival of their baby and of course to increase their chance of success! Read about massage induction here.

Does it hurt?

Acupuncture needles are very fine, single use, sterile and stainless steel. They are much smaller in diameter than hypodermic needles, which need to inject substances into a vein. Acupuncture needles usually come in a small guide tube and are tapped gently but quickly into the skin. They are so fine and insertion is so quick, minimal sensation is felt during needling. No contact with veins or arteries is needed, and therefore in most cases little bleeding is expected when the needles are removed.

The sensation is an interesting dull numbness that the Chinese call “de qi”. This can be a mild to strong sensation depending on the needle technique of your practitioner. Our practitioners tend to needle very gently and any de qi sensation is usually mild. It can best be described as a heaviness, tingling or tightness in the area. There may be a slight pricking when the needle passes through the skin; most people do not even feel this. If there is any sharpness after this, let your practitioner know so that the point can be adjusted to be more comfortable.

Do I need to bring anything in with me on the day of the initial consultation?

The main thing your naturopath will appreciate is seeing any blood or other test results that have been completed to date. If you do not have these on hand, don’t worry, we can get them later if needed. Our naturopaths will look at testing in detail to ensure nothing has been overlooked or missed in determining your treatment plan. If you have been charting your temperature to determine ovulation this information is also helpful to your naturopath.

Cost involved?

The frequency of naturopathic consultations will usually be somewhere between every 2-6 weeks depending on what is being treated. Many of our patients have complex cases requiring close scrutiny, support and regular changes, particularly in the early days. Sometimes more frequent consultations are needed to assess changes and requirements. We also like to ensure that adequate support and information is being provided to enable implementation of our all-important lifestyle recommendations. Our naturopaths cover comprehensively the things that you can do to improve your fertility. While they can prescribe herbs and nutrients, changes at home are often required and usually a bit of support and a lot of information is needed to make this a reality.

See our price list for details of your consultation costs here. However, please remember that each patients’ prescription requirements are unique so we are unable to estimate the costs for prescribed nutritionals, herbs, etc.

What sort of medicines do naturopaths use?

Your naturopath will choose the medicine appropriate for your situation and your health. They may prescribe nutritional supplements, herbal medicine in liquid or tablet form, herbal teas, flower essences or homeopathic remedies. Dietary approaches (food as medicine) are also encouraged and discussed in detail.

Does my partner need to come in as well?

If you are trying to conceive then, ideally, yes. Even if your partner does not have a diagnosed fertility issue, there will be factors for him to consider in optimising his sperm health. Factors such as how much alcohol he drinks, whether he smokes, dietary considerations and so much more are really important for him to get a handle on to optimise his health and fertility. It takes two – a sperm and an egg and each of those needs to be as healthy as can be to make the healthiest baby.

Making these changes together means you get to support each other to make changes or when the going gets tough. It also means you feel better, healthier, amazing even. You are much more likely to want to have sex when you feel healthy, relaxed, well rested and vital from all the goodness going into your body.

If your partner does have a diagnosed fertility issue there is SO MUCH that can be done to support him, improve his general health and sperm parameters and increase your chances. Some men feel reluctant at first, but once they realise we are all pretty down to earth, well researched and sensible, they usually come around.

If your partner is really reluctant and just won’t take steps to improve his or her health, as sometimes happens, it can be incredibly frustrating and disappointing as a partner doing all you can to improve yours. Counselling is a very good idea in this instance to develop some coping strategies and perhaps even some coaxing strategies to get your partner on board!

Who is the best one for …

Our practitioners are some of the most experienced in their field. They are also highly collaborative sharing learnings, experiences, research and discussing cases and treatment approaches regularly. It is hard to say this one is better at this or that or has more experience as they really are all such excellent practitioners. What we would say though is that the best practitioner is the one you click with. While they are all fantastic at what they do and all very lovely, they are also very different people with different approaches and styles of communication.

Developing a good relationship with someone who communicates with you in a way you can relate to and with whom you feel you can create a trusting relationship is the key! We encourage you to try someone else if you don’t feel a sense of connection or rapport with the first practitioner you see – and there will be no hard feelings whatsoever! Simply chat with one of our reception staff if you’d like to try a different practitioner (in any modality actually) – with so many excellent practitioners to choose from you will find someone who is the best one for you.

I don’t really know who I need to see …

This is a common one, you know you need some support but where to start? We generally recommend seeing a naturopath first. This will ensure that an extensive list of lifestyle changes and self-help measures are covered as well as a deeper exploration of the issues you are struggling with. From there, your naturopath will guide you as to what else might be needed to help you achieve your goal – Chinese medicine, more blood tests or other more extensive testing.