Acupuncture is quickly becoming a popular treatment tool for pregnancy-related conditions. Whether you are trying to become pregnant, are looking for a drug-free alternative to a number of problems that arise during pregnancy, or are looking to prepare for labor and delivery, acupuncture is an ideal form of treatment.
The health of the parents is the most important factor in determining the health of the baby. We recommend that couples take at least 3 months of weekly acupuncture to regulate the woman’s cycle and address any imbalances before they try to become pregnant. It takes the body about 120 days to mature the eggs that will come to ovulate. For men, it takes about 70-90 days for a man’s sperm to mature. (reference: “Making Babies: A 3 Month Proven Program for Maximum Fertility,” Jill Blakeway, LAc and Sami David, MD). Regular acupuncture treatments can help balance hormones, reduce stress and strengthen your body to prepare it for pregnancy.
If you have had failed attempts at pregnancy and are using IVF or other western medical treatment for infertility, we can provide additional support. In fact most fertility doctors will recommend acupuncture as an adjunct to assisted pregnancies. We recommend a minimum of 9 acupuncture treatments performed in the 5 weeks before egg retrieval and implantation as optimal to improve egg quality and prepare the uterus for implantation. Difficulty getting pregnant can be stressful both emotionally and financially. We help reduce this stress and provide a safe, effective treatment without drugs or side effects.
Symptoms of Discomfort during pregnancy.
Many pregnant women experience symptoms of discomfort during pregnancy. Some of these symptoms are due to hormonal changes in the body, while others can be caused by the increased pressure on organs around the uterus from the growing fetus. Patients who are experiencing conditions often regarded as “normal” during pregnancy can find relief with acupuncture. This might include:
- easing nausea and vomiting from morning sickness
- relieving constipation and heartburn
- improving sleep
- reducing anxiety and depression
- relieving back pain and sciatica
If you have a history of miscarriage, acupuncture can help ensure that you remain strong and healthy and the pregnancy is supported during the first trimester when most miscarriages occur.
Efficient Labor & Delivery
I also see a number of patients who want to enhance the prospects of an efficient labor and delivery in the final weeks of pregnancy. Whether baby is not positioned optimally or Mom wants help pre-labor in order to achieve natural childbirth, acupuncture can be very effective. Pre-labor acupuncture is the use of acupuncture at 36 weeks’ gestation to prepare Mom physically and mentally for a normal labor. Acupuncture has been reported to be beneficial for inducing labor, shortening the time of labor, avoiding post-term dates, and reducing postpartum bleeding. We will also educate you and your partner on acupressure techniques that can be helpful during labor.
Chinese Medicine has been shown in clinical trials to be effective at turning a breech baby naturally. We recommend a regimen of acupuncture and moxabustion, starting at week 32, to help a baby to turn naturally. Usually treatments have to be done before week 38 so that the baby has enough room in the uterus to move. We will also teach you how to do moxabustion at home so that you can continue with daily treatments. Evidence shows that this treatment helps to stimulate the production of maternal hormones and encourages the uterus lining to contract in a way that may help turn the baby.
Acupuncture can provide support for couples during all phases of pregnancy. By combining it with a balanced diet, moderate regular exercise, and stress reduction, the chances of having a healthy pregnancy and a healthy baby are greatly improved. We are ready to support you.