Acupuncture is a highly effective, gentle, safe and natural method of relieving the discomforts and symptoms that can arise while nurturing and growing a new life. Pregnant women tend to be very responsive to acupuncture, and many find it a nourishing and relaxing method of care. Examples of complaints that can be effectively managed using acupuncture and Chinese medicine in pregnancy include:
- Morning Sickness
- Threatened Miscarriage
- Hemorrhoids, Varicose Veins, and Vulval Varicosities
- Edema (swelling)
- Urinary Tract Infections
- Stress and Anxiety
- Itching in Pregnancy
- Back, Rib, and Pubic Pain
- Breech or Posterior Babies
- Labour Induction
For potentially serious conditions in pregnancy such as hypertension, cholestasis, pre-eclampsia, small for date babies and gestational diabetes, Chinese medicine can be used as an adjunctive treatment in consultation with medical care.
Having completed graduate training, I have vast experience working with pregnant women. I enjoy helping women overcome the discomforts that can arise during pregnancy so that they can feel joyful and connected during this special time.
Pre-birth and Labour Induction
Three to four weeks prior to the estimated due date treatments to prepare the pelvis and cervix can be commenced. Research indicates a reduction in women requiring medical intervention, including medical induction and a caesarean section along with a more efficient active stage of labour when acupuncture is used regularly in the last month of pregnancy.
In addition, acupuncture can be used for birth induction by utilising the acupuncture points that are otherwise forbidden during pregnancy. The points need to be stimulated quite strongly to increase uterine activity and assist with cervical ripening. Acupuncture is a safe, viable alternative to Western medical induction, it works with a women's body encouraging the natural flow and cascade of labour hormones rather than shutting them off and consequently has fewer side effects than a medical induction. It is very effective, women will often progress into labour after their first treatment, but more commonly after 2-3 treatments.
Breech & Posterior Presentation
A highly effective treatment in Chinese medicine is that of breech presentation. While 50% of babies who are breech at 34 weeks will turn cephalic by birth with no intervention, research indicates this increases to approximately 75% with the use of moxa. The dried herb moxa (Artemisia Vulgaris) is lit and held above a point on the outside of the little toe. The sensation is warm to hot, but not painful as the smoldering herb doesn't touch the skin. Best results are obtained around 34 weeks, whilst the baby still has room to turn around. This is a one-off treatment with instructions are given for the woman to continue this treatment over the next 10 days at home.