Acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment for many unwanted conditions of pregnancy such as nausea, pain and fatigue. Treatment during pregnancy benefits sleep, reduces anxiety and is often used in later pregnancy for relief from insomnia, heartburn, back pain, sciatica, and pelvic pain. Acupuncture, in conjunction with your medical care, can be used to treat the following:
Nausea and vomiting
Urinary tract infections
Fatigue and exhaustion
Anxiety and depression
Thrush and abnormal vaginal discharge
Itching in pregnancy
Small for dates babies
Breech and posterior positioned babies
Prebirth treatment to prepare the body for an efficient labour
Acupressure for pain relief during labour
Pain relief and problems during labour
Pre Birth Acupuncture involves weekly treatments three to four weeks prior to the due date. These treatments play an important role in preparing a woman for birth by relaxing the back and pelvis, ripening the cervix, helping to position the baby and to promote optimal energy for women to enter into labour.
Studies have shown that a treatment once a week in the last three weeks of pregnancy reduces the amount of time spent in labour, improves labour outcomes and reduces the need for medical inductions and caesareans.
Breech Presentation / Posterior Babies
If your baby is not in an optimal position and is breech or posterior, acupuncture treatment can safely turn the baby without any discomfort. These treatments should begin between 34 – 36 weeks gestation . This is a one off treatment where the women is shown how to continue treatment at home with a moxa stick-a herb that has been shaped into a cigar like stick and is burned above a specific acupuncture point.
In a study of 505 women 81% of the babies in the group receiving acupuncture had turned compared to 49% in the control group. The best results are achieved before the 36th week a much smaller percentage of babies turn after this date but a positive outcome is more likely if this is not the woman’s first child.
Acupressure for Labour
An instruction session can be given to teach acupressure techniques to birth partners for pain relief during the early stages of labour and to keep easy and efficient contractions going as labour progresses. Acupressure can be used as an alternative to drugs for pain relief in labour, or used for pain relief prior to the administration of drugs.
If you have passed your due date and are overdue acupuncture treatment can be used to promote labour and encourage it to begin naturally and safely. It can be an effective alternative to a medical induction.
Post-natal Care and Nourishment
TCM places a great deal of importance on the complete recovery of a new mother’s strength and vitality following the birth. After giving birth and with then new demands of motherhood, a woman often neglects her own needs as she focuses on caring for her newborn. Treatments are gentle, nourishing and designed to enhance sleep and relaxation. Dietary advice is also addressed to help a woman recover from childbirth.