As we head towards the summer months, the usual aches and pains of pregnancy can seem so much worse. Joint pain, pelvic pain and general tiredness catch up with us quickly in the heat. Knowing how to relieve these in a way that is safe for you and your baby sometimes adds more stress to the situation. Acupuncture is a natural therapy which restores the flow of ‘qi’ (your life force) around your body by placing very fine needles into specific points on your body.
Acupuncture is generally safe during pregnancy, but you must choose a trained practitioner. This ensures that the needles are sterile and that they are aware of the specific needs of pregnant women.
From morning sickness and breast tenderness through to back pain and migraines, acupuncture is a natural therapy that can help across the whole cycle of your pregnancy. Morning sickness is a common ailment and can seriously reduce your ability to get on with life during pregnancy. Acupuncture is particularly good at treating that nagging nausea that can follow you throughout your day. The points for morning sickness relief are located on your wrists and ankles – another great aspect of acupuncture is that it is very non-invasive.
Turning breech babies
According to the British Acupuncture Society, this natural therapy could even help to turn a breech baby. Your therapist will use a process called moxibustion – a process where they burn a cigar-like roll of a herb called ‘moxa’ above an acupuncture point on your toe. Previous research has shown this therapy to have a success rate of up to 80% in early testing.
Help during labour
The pain of labour is intense and usually sustained over a long period. Acupuncture is a simple way to help naturally reduce pain during labour. Very fine needles are attached to a point on your ear and sometimes charged with a small electrical impulse – like a TENS machine. Since the needles are placed on your ear, this shouldn’t interfere with any of the important work your midwife will need to do.
The benefits of acupuncture don’t end once your baby is in the world. It can also help with mastitis. Mastitis is a painful swelling in the breast caused by a bacteria entering your body during breastfeeding. Acupuncture can help reduce the pain and swelling by restoring balance to your body system.
If you are in need of relief during pregnancy and want to give acupuncture a try, browse our directory for a therapist near you.