Acupuncture during pregnancy has eased discomfort and maintained the prenatal health of mothers to be for thousands of years, and for good reason. Acupuncture treatments when performed properly by a skilled practitioner, has many benefits with no side effects. Below is a breakdown of how acupuncture can ease common discomforts encountered during pregnancy.
It is only natural that when the mother is healthy that will go a long way to insure the health of the baby. Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine are methods proven safe and effective for treating common problematic pregnancy symptoms. These can include, to name a few: morning sickness, water retention, edema, neck pain, back pain, leg cramps, sciatica, insomnia, fatigue, exhaustion, depression, anxiety, heartburn, constipation, swelling, vomiting, nausea, pelvic pain, headache, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other discomforts. This ancient medical system will treat the cause of the imbalance rather than just mitigate symptoms. Pregnancy care acupuncture treatments will help in creating a strong and suitable environment for the birth of a child by balancing the mother, as well as help soothe pregnancy discomforts.
Acupuncture is also used in preventing health problems that may occur during or after pregnancy. Results have shown that more and more women are using acupuncture to help make the entire childbearing year more comfortable and may prevent or treat common problems associated with pregnancy.
Although acupuncture can be used to prevent such symptoms, treatments can also address relieving symptoms once they have occurred.
Acupuncture treatments can be used in the weeks prior to the due date by preparing the woman’s body for the intense work of birth. There is a treatment that can also encourage the baby to move in to the optimal head down position prior to birth. In addition, Acupuncture treatments have been employed to induce labor as well. The points targeted increase the amount, strength, and regularity of contractions and stimulate cervical ripening. It is common to see women use acupuncture to induce labor in addition to using it for pain relief.
How Getting Acupuncture During Pregnancy Can Make You More Comfortable
There are many discomforts during pregnancy, from having to sleep on your side to emotional swings due to raging hormones. To make the problem worse, there is a never-ending list of medications that aren’t to be taken while pregnant. Fortunately, acupuncture during pregnancy is completely safe and is often used to treat a variety of issues that pregnancy causes.
While acupuncture is perfectly safe for pains and muscle tensions during pregnancy, it is even used to alleviate some of the anxiety, worry and depression that can result from hormone fluctuations. In fact, a Stanford study showed that 63 percent of women that received depression focused acupuncture had a decrease in depression, nearly triple the control group.
Of course, not all women experience depression during their pregnancy. However, acupuncture is still an excellent and safe choice for dealing with all of the little aches and pains that come along, especially with all of the medication restrictions. What’s even more exciting is that you don’t need treatment nearly as often as you would need to take medication, and there are no side effects as there would be with medication.
Pregnancy is a very difficult time, from morning sickness to hormone swings, so it’s important to minimize stress. Not only will this help you, but reducing your stress level helps your baby as well. The more you are able to relax, the less overall discomfort you will feel. Don’t endure more pain, cramping, or depression that you need to; let specialized acupuncture help you feel better.
Pregnancy Acupuncture Benefits
- Stress reduction. Pregnancy can be a stressful time. Hormones are changing creating irritability, nothing fits, the list goes on. This buildup of stress frays the nerves creating an unhealthy biochemical and hormonal formula. Acupuncture releases this stress and redirects Qi to reset the mind and relax the body.
- Pain reduction. Throughout the pregnancy, the lower back and hips take on the most pressure. The weight of the baby combined with altered blood flow and hormone shifts can cause a significant amount of pain, specifically in those areas. Sometimes swelling of the appendages occur creating carpal tunnel syndrome-like symptoms. Acupuncture redirects stuck Qi to reduce pain and swelling.
- Increased energy. During pregnancy, so much energy redirects to the act of creating a person that it can leave the mother feeling sluggish and fatigued. Additionally, altered sleep patterns due to her changing body can make it difficult to get through the day. Acupuncture stimulates the body and mind and resets healthy sleep patterns.
- Managing depression. Prenatal and postpartum depression are widespread problems, and many antidepressants are not safe for pregnant women. It is well known that acupuncture treatments create a sense of well-being. Studies also show that acupuncture is nearly as effective as Prozac at alleviating depression.
- A quicker, shorter labor. Acupuncture and acupressure has worked for thousands of years to induce labor, shorten labor, and alleviate labor pain.
How Acupuncture Works
There are 12 main meridians along the body. Meridians are acupuncture channels. The meridians connect the acupuncture points. These points run beside dozens of energy pathways. The acupuncturist stimulates these points by inserting a needle into the proper location. The needles are nearly hair-thin, and most say there is no pain. Acupressure uses the same points but relies on pressure using the fingers instead of needles. Continuing acupuncture after pregnancy is also helpful, as it helps with preventing depression and the “baby blues.”
Dr. Laurie Binder is a Certified Ob/Gyn Nurse Practitioner and a Licensed Acupuncturist. With more than twenty years experience in the field, she started her medical career in the labor and delivery area. She is an expert in fertility, childbirth, pregnancy and women’s health from both Western medical and traditional Chinese medicine viewpoints. For more information check out her CV and contact to schedule an appointment.
To learn more or to schedule an appointment, contact us today.