Acupuncture during pregnancy
Acupuncture can offer invaluable support in all stages of pregnancy. It is a non- invasive, safe and effective way to optimise foetal growth and development and promote the mother’s well being. It can be used to prevent illness and treat common pregnancy ailments such as nausea and vomiting, fatigue or musculoskeletal pains and aches caused by altered centre of gravity and the effect of pregnancy hormones on the pelvic ligaments. The conditions we most commonly see in clinic are:
- Morning sickness
- Fatigue and exhaustion
- Anxiety or depression
- Headaches or migraines
- Hypertension disorders
- Gestational diabetes
- Back pain and pelvic pain (SPD)
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Breech presentation
- Preparation for labour
- Preparation for medical induction
A herbal treatment called moxibustion has proven to be a very safe, gentle and effective way of attempting to turn breech babies. Moxa is compressed and rolled into a cigar shaped herbal stick. The treatment involves lighting the end of the stick so that the herb smoulders and the heat radiates over a specific acupuncture point known for having a direct effect on the uterus. By warming and relaxing the muscle of the womb we allow more room and make it easier for the baby to turn. The best results are often gained before week 36 as after this stage there is so little room for the baby to move. We have however seen babies turning much later than that.
Preparation for Labour
Towards the end of the pregnancy acupuncture is used to prepare women for labour, both physically and mentally. Weekly treatments from 37 weeks can facilitate the natural onset of labour, optimise foetal position, relax the pelvic ligaments, ripen and shorten the cervix and build the energy reserves the mother needs for childbirth.
Post Natal Care
The post natal period is a critical time for the mother, a time when she needs enough support so that she can rest, replenish her energy levels after childbirth and establish a healthy bond with her baby. Acupuncture can help women recover, regain their strength, it can calm their mind so that they can process the often overwhelming feelings of early motherhood and embrace the challenges of their new role.