During pregnancy, women may experience a number of changes to their normal body functions, as a result of fluctuating hormone levels and changing physical structures.
Some of the conditions that may find symptomatic relief with acupuncture are:
Nausea or vomiting: many women may experience some mild nausea or occasional vomiting during the first 12 weeks, as the body adjusts to hormonal changes. However, should these symptoms become debilitating, acupuncture, acupressure and lifestyle advice may help to reduce the severity of the symptoms.
Hemorrhoids: an increase in perineal and vulvar pressure during pregnancy (due to the weight of baby, placenta and blood flow) can lead to painful varicosities in the vulva or hemorrhoids. Acupuncture may be helpful in assisting with the pain and aching of these conditions.
Stress and anxiety: it is common for women to feel some anxiety during pregnancy, however, it is important to maintain moderate levels of stress, so as not to impact the body’s (and baby’s) immune system. Acupuncture and acupressure may assist in relaxation and reduction of stress hormones.
Back and hip pain: the hormone relaxin circulating during pregnancy can lead to an increased laxity in ligaments, resulting in instability of the lower back, sacrum and hips. Combined with the extra weight of baby and uterus, this can lead to aches, pains and sometimes sciatica for pregnant woman. Acupuncture may assist with the symptoms of pain by relieving inflammation in local areas.
Pubic Symphysis pain: pain around the pubic symphysis during pregnancy can feel sharp, stabbing and can limit a woman’s ability to walk or even stand, when severe. We may use acupuncture as well as take-home acupressure tacks to help relieve the pain of this condition.
At Poke Acupuncture we take care to ensure optimal comfort for pregnant women. Our treatments during pregnancy are offered on our comfortable pregnancy cushions (so women can lay face down without pressure on their bellies during the treatments, allowing for further relaxation).
A combination of acupuncture, acupressure, cupping and take-home acupressure tacks provide a gentle therapeutic approach to a range of conditions. Herbal formulas may be recommended as needed, as are homecare stretches, and dietary suggestions. Typical treatment course is once per week, as required.
For other pregnancy related conditions: please call us or pop in for a free 15 minute consultation to discuss your condition and how we may be able to help.
Labour preparation: It is a common preconception that acupuncture will immediately bring on labour, and many women will enquire at our clinic from 39+ weeks wishing to be induced, sometimes with a medical induction scheduled the following day.
In our practice, we prefer to assist women from about 36 weeks with acupuncture for pre-birth treatment. Treatments are performed once a week until birth and are designed to assist in promoting cervical ripening. This gives the women a better opportunity to prepare their bodies for labour and focus treatment on any problems that have arisen.
Inductions: In certain cases, women may meet the criteria for an acupuncture based induction. Once a woman has reached full term (40-41 weeks), her membranes have prematurely ruptured, or she has a scheduled medical induction ahead, we can discuss a series of acupuncture sessions to assist with stimulating labour. It is helpful for us to know as much as possible about your pregnancy and current labour symptoms so we can cater our treatment to your situation. While some women do go into spontaneous labour with acupuncture for labour, others may still require a medical induction. It is our aim that these women progress more efficiently and their cervix is favourable for a medical induction.
We recommend a series of acupressure points and body positioning to assist with pain relief during labour. This can be provided to you as part of your pre-birth treatment protocol.
At Poke Acupuncture we take care to ensure optimal comfort for pregnant women. Our treatments during pregnancy are offered on our comfortable pregnancy cushions (so women can lay face down without pressure on their bellies during the treatments, allowing for further relaxation). Labour preparation treatments are offered once a week, over a series of 4-5 weeks. Induction therapies are preferable as a series of 3-4 treatments in the week prior to a medical induction.
Once the big job of nurturing and delivering your baby is complete, it is time to continue to nurture a woman’s body. It is common for women to lack the time for self-care after having a baby, however, this time is just as important as pregnancy, with the demands of breastfeeding, night-waking and physical recovery requiring extra energy, and emotional support.
Insufficient Lactation: a poor milk supply can affect both a mother’s sense of self as well as baby’s nutrition. Research has shown that acupuncture may be beneficial in increasing milk supply in hypogalactic women.
We typically combine acupuncture with dietary suggestions, or a Chinese herbal formula if necessary.
Varicosities: swelling and pain in the vulva or hemorrhoids can occur during pregnancy, or may not surface until after the strain of labour and delivery. Acupuncture may assist in relieving the pain from these conditions.
Post-partum women require just as much care as pregnant women, and we take care to provide our treatments in a relaxing and calm environment. This is not only a time for women to have their health condition addressed, but also a time to relax.
Sciatica, shoulder pain, lower back pain
Eczema, psoriasis, shingles
Constipation, indigestion, nausea
Hot flushes, Menopause, Endometriosis
Vertigo, tension headaches, migraines
Pregnancy support, Labour preparation, Induction, Post-Partum support