Pregnancy acupuncture

We advocate gentle safe and pain-free pregnancy acupuncture.

Most pharmaceutical drugs can seriously harm the baby when administered prenatally.

“Acupuncture in obstetrics is drug-free, clinically effective and cost-effective”
BJOG 2002 (An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology)

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Acupuncture reduces the duration of labour

Acupuncture in pregnancy can serve as an optimizing and preventive measure. According to studies conducted in France, this time-proven therapy can reduce the duration of labour. It helps to soften the cervix and makes labour easier, therefore reduces the chances of complications during labour.

If you’re planning to deliver the baby naturally, we recommend starting acupuncture at least 4-5 weeks before your due date. Our appointment schedule is busy. If you’re willing to consider this option, please contact us in advance to arrange a convenient time for your appointment.

World Health Organisation recommends acupuncture in childbirth:

“In childbirth, acupuncture analgesia is useful for relieving labour pain and can significantly reduce the duration of labour.
In the case of weakened uterine contractions, acupuncture increases the activity of the uterus. In addition, the avoidance of narcotics is advantageous for newborn infants.”

Acupuncture for pregnancy related conditions

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Pregnancy back pain

Pregnancy back pain is one of the most common conditions seen by our acupuncturists. Growing foetus pushes on muscles, adds weight, the pelvis tilts forward. This creates stress on muscles, ligaments and joints.

Soft tissue swelling and joint laxity are considered normal in pregnancy, but they predispose a pregnant woman to joint pain. Increasing oestrogen, progesterone, relaxin, and cortisol levels also have been shown to be associated with the joint pain and stiffness and arthralgia.

Acupuncture helps by stimulating your body’s own pain-relieving opioid mechanisms. It may help regulate muscle tonus and reduce inflammation.

Even small doses of commonly used analgesics, like paracetamol or ibuprofen, may not be desirable during pregnancy. Acupuncture offers a safe and effective alternative.

Pelvic pain, sacroiliac joint dysfunction (SI Joint Pain), symphysis pubis dysfunction

My patients often ask – why do I get pelvic pain in pregnancy? Pelvis is formed by sacrum and coccyx at the back and hip bones on the sides and front. Hip bone is further divided into three parts ilium, ischium and pubis. Sacrum is a bone at the very base of your lumbar spine. It forms a joint with pelvic bone – sacroiliac joint.

Now, this sacroiliac joint is one of the most common suspects when we see patients with pregnancy back pain. Although technically this is not back pain, the pain is commonly located in your lower back area, but sometimes can refer to the inside of your thigh. In our experience sacroiliac joint pain responds well to acupuncture.

At the front of your pelvis, the hip bones join to form a junction called pubic symphysis. The factors described in the back pain section above can cause significant pain (symphysis pubis dysfunction). Acupuncture has been shown to be effective at relieving the pelvic pain.

Morning sickness

You’re not alone. More than half of pregnant women will experience morning sickness. It is a cause of some serious discomfort and sometimes can end you up in a hospital for intravenous fluids.

The good news is, acupuncture is effective at reducing the symptoms of nausea including hyperemesis gravidarum.

You don’t need to rely on ginger tea. Get relief now.

Turning breech babies: Malposition of foetus 

This includes Breech, Posterior, Transverse and Oblique presentation.

As the baby grows bigger there is less space for it to turn. This is the reason, ideally, we want to hear from you by 32nd or 33rd week of your pregnancy if you find out that your baby is the breach.

When applied on time and correctly, acupuncture reduces the risk you’ll need to undergo a caesarian section. Acupuncture is gentler, safer way of breach version (turning your baby) than cephalic version.

Overdue pregnancy (labour induction)

Ideally, we want to see you 4-5 weeks before your due date, so that instead of inducing, we can help with the ripening of cervix and result in delivery closer to your estimated due date. Nonetheless, if you have missed this, acupuncture can help with labour induction. We normally recommend 4 acupuncture treatments daily or a couple of days apart.

Happy you – happy baby

If your pregnancy is stress/anxiety-free and happy, it is more likely that your baby will turn out happy.

“studies examining maternal depression/anxiety during pregnancy and other indices of gestational stress have shown significant associations with emotional problems in children” Reference

Anxiety and depression in pregnancy affect the health of the baby. Antidepressant use in pregnancy may not be safe, some antidepressants are associated with complications in pregnancy or have ill effects on the baby. Even the use of these drugs leading to pregnancy has a potential for significant harm.

Acupuncture has been shown to be both safe in pregnancy and effective for anxiety and depression.

Pregnancy depression

Pregnancy depression affects about 1 in 7 pregnant women. Importantly, the problem with it is not only the well-being of the expectant mother. Depression can affect the health of the developing baby. The risks include increased the risk of preterm birth, smaller babies with smaller brains in proportion to their bodies, blunted stress response in babies, altered structure of the offspring’s brain to name a few. Use of antidepressants also may be risky for the baby. Acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment for pregnancy depression.

Pregnancy acupuncture is endorsed by the World Health Organisation

World Health Organization:

“In early pregnancy, acupuncture can be used for the prevention and treatment of morning sickness.”

“Acupuncture is useful if induction of labour is desired, such as in prolonged pregnancy; the effect is comparable with that of oxytocin by intravenous drip.”

“Acupuncture stimulates milk secretion after childbirth and can be used to treat deficient lactation…”

Please contact us to make an appointment learn how prenatal acupuncture can benefit you and your baby.

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“Ideally, you should avoid taking medicines when you’re pregnant”

Other pregnancy conditions acupuncture can help with

  • postnatal depression
  • high blood pressure / gestational hypertension / preeclampsia
  • urinary incontinence
  • overdue pregnancy (labour induction)
  • anxiety
  • insomnia
  • insufficient lactation
  • gestational diabetes

This is not a complete list of conditions, which could benefit from acupuncture while you’re pregnant. If your condition is not listed, please don’t hesitate to contact us learn how pregnancy acupuncture can benefit you and your baby, or request an appointment.