Pregnancy acupuncture

We advocate gentle, safe and pain-free pregnancy acupuncture.

Most pharmaceutical drugs can do some harm to the baby when taken prenatally. Acupuncture is a natural answer to many pregnancy ailments.

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

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Preparation for labour

Acupuncture may help to prepare for a better labour experience. According to studies 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.

Because pregnancy acupuncture has cumulative effects we need time to prepare your body for labour. If you’re planning for a natural delivery, we recommend starting acupuncture at least 4-5 weeks before your due date.

In a New Zealand study, women who had pre-birth acupuncture improved significantly:

  • 35% less inductions (for a first birth, this was a 43% reduction);
  • 31% less the epidurals;
  • 32% fewer emergency Caesarean deliveries;
  • And a 9% increase in normal vaginal births.

When you’re willing to start acupuncture for labour preparation, contact us today to arrange a convenient time. Even if our appointment schedule is busy we understand the unpredictable nature of pregnancy and will do best to accommodate you.

Acupuncture for labour induction success

How successful is acupuncture at inducing labour? Because this natural treatment can soften and dilate the cervix, it can help with the onset of labour contractions naturally.

Furthermore, it reduces the need for induction medication as well as pain meds. Medical induction comes with risks and complications while acupuncture makes birthing easier.

In conclusion, labour induction acupuncture is natural, safe and often successful. We supported numerous women leading to the birth.

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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Acupuncture for pregnany related conditions infographic

Pregnancy back pain

Pregnancy often comes with aches and pains. However, you don’t have to put up with it.

Pregnancy back pain is one of the most common complaints among our pregnant patients. Growing fetus stretches muscles, adds weight, the pelvis tilts forward. These changes put stress on muscles, ligaments and joints.

Another common pregnancy complaint is joint pain. Firstly, soft tissue swelling and joint laxity are the main reasons for this kind of pain. Secondly, rapidly increasing estrogen, progesterone, relaxin, and cortisol levels can be another cause of pregnancy joint pain, stiffness and arthralgia.

Acupuncture relieves pain by ramping up your natural pain-relieving mechanisms. It stimulates the nerves in the local tissues. As a result this increases local blood flow, facilitates healing, and analgesia.

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, symphysis pubis dysfunction

Our patients often ask – why do I get pelvic pain in pregnancy? Pelvis is formed by the sacrum and coccyx at the back and hip bones on the sides and front. The hip bone is further divided into three parts ilium, ischium and pubis.

At the front of your pelvis, the hip bones join to form a junction called pubic symphysis. Because of pregnancy hormones and additional pressure from the increasing weight, your hip bones can misalign or stiffen. This can cause significant pain (symphysis pubis dysfunction). The discomfort when walking can be so debilitating that we have women coming in on crutches.

Sacroiliac joint dysfunction (SIJ Pain)

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 sacroiliac joint is not back pain. It’s part of your pelvis. But you would feel discomfort in your lower back area. However, SIJ pain sometimes can refer to the inside of your thigh. In our experience sacroiliac joint pain responds well to acupuncture.

Acupuncture relieves pelvic pain

The good news is acupuncture has been shown to be effective at relieving the pelvic pain. Most importantly, without side effects for you or your baby.

It is especially good news because there are few effective pelvic pain treatment options available. Most of the doctors will prescribe pain killers that don’t work or if you can’t walk they will offer a wheelchair.

Morning sickness

More than half of pregnant women will experience morning sickness. Never mind the name, it is not accurate. For most women, it’s more an all-day-sickness.

Continuous nausea is tiring and disabling. It can cause dehydration. And you can even end up in hospital for a fluid top up.

Acupuncture is effective at reducing the symptoms of nausea in a safe and natural way.  In a study for hyperemesis, women who had acupuncture needed much shorter hospital stays. They had fewer miscarriages and adverse events.

You don’t need to rely on unsafe treatments, or on treatments that don’t work. Get a relief with acupuncture today.

Turning breech babies: Malposition of the foetus

Acupuncture can help with Breech, Posterior, Transverse and Oblique presentation.

As the baby grows bigger there is less space for it to turn. If your baby is breech, don’t wait, get in touch. Ideally, we want to hear from you by the 32nd or 33rd week of your pregnancy. This gives time and space for the baby to turn. We did have patients whose babies turned with the gentle help of acupuncture in the last weeks of pregnancy, but contact us earlier whenever possible.

When applied on time and correctly, acupuncture reduces the risk of caesarean section. Additionally, acupuncture is gentler, safer way of breach version (turning your baby) than cephalic version (ECV).

Overdue pregnancy (labour induction)

Ideally, we want to see you 4-5 weeks before your due date for labour preparation.  This gives us a chance to help with the ripening the cervix, instead of inducing. This kind of acupuncture treatment can result in spontaneous delivery closer to your due date.

Nonetheless, if you have missed this window, acupuncture can help with labour induction. For this purpose, we normally recommend intensive treatment of 4+ daily sessions.

Happy you – happy baby

If your pregnancy is stress/anxiety-free and happy, it is more likely that *your baby* will be 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 you and, consequently, the health of the baby. Safety of antidepressants in pregnancy is a moving target. As we get more studies, sometimes the ill effects of the medications immerge. Some antidepressants have shown links 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. While you need to discuss the safety with your prescribing physician, we can help you to beat the blues naturally. 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
  • anxiety
  • insomnia
  • insufficient lactation (insufficient production of breast milk)
  • gestational diabetes

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