I recognize that every woman has a different experience during her pregnancy. I have found the following treatment guidelines to be the optimal schedule for many women, but I am flexible with these guidelines depending on the circumstances surrounding your pregnancy. These are recommendations based on my experience to help ease the transition to motherhood. Regular treatment during pregnancy helps to ensure happy, healthy mums give birth to healthy babies more efficiently. Postpartum recovery is often quicker and easier with regular treatment both during pregnancy and in the postpartum period.
For over 3000 years Traditional Chinese Medicine has promoted specialised treatment for women in pregnancy care and postpartum recovery. Acupuncture is a safe and widely accepted form of treatment during pregnancy. I regularly treat pregnant women and provide relief for them when other treatment options are not available.
Acupuncture in pregnancy
Antenatal acupuncture can help you to have a happy, healthy pregnancy, relieving many of the discomforts of pregnancy and preparing for a good labour. Weekly acupuncture treatments for the first twelve weeks of pregnancy can enhance circulation to the uterus and strengthen the immune system to reduce the chance of miscarriage. It is a fantastic and safe way of supporting pregnancy health and to deal with pregnancy discomfort:
- Anxiety and stress
- Nausea or vomiting
- Carpal tunnel syndrome
- Haemorrhoids and vulval varices
- Sinus problem
- Threatened miscarriage
- Musculoskeletal pain
- Tiredness and exhaustion
- Skin rashes or itching
Acupuncture is safe at any stage of pregnancy but is particularly recommended at weeks 12, 24 and 36 as these are transition times between trimesters. The gentle support that acupuncture provides can aide the change from one trimester to the next maintaining as well as strengthening both the woman's and unborn baby's energy.
Moxibustion (moxa) treatment for breech position babies
Moxibustion is a gentle and safe treatment understood to have an effect on the tone of the muscles of the womb, encouraging the baby into a head down position.
Third Trimester Treatment Service (11 treatments)
This is the ultimate in labour preparation.Treatments in the third trimester will focus primarily on preparing you for the experience of labour and delivery, while also treating any conditions that may be arising for you. The recommended treatment schedule is:
• Weeks 28-35 treatment every second week (28, 30, 32, 34)
• Weeks 36-38 treatment every week (36, 37, 38)
• Weeks 38-labour treatment twice per week (38, 39, 39, 40)
This service is the optimal schedule to help you prepare for labour and delivery. I will be taking steps to prevent and manage conditions that commonly arise during the third trimester, including:
• Back pain
• Constipation and hemorrhoids
• Stress and anxiety
• Poor sleep
Labour preparation Treatment Service (4 treatments)
Acupuncture at this stage can be useful in preparing your body for the birthing process, encouraging cervical ripening and promoting the beginning of labour. Treatments from week 38 onwards will be twice weekly until labour begins. Though I highly encourage regular treatment in advance of this stage of pregnancy, I am happy to help with cervical ripening/labour preparation at this stage as well.
Acupuncture to nudge labour along
If an induction date is looming you might feel like you want to give baby a nudge. Acupuncture is a very effective treatment which can help initiate labour naturally. The treatment can be done from 41 weeks gestation (one week over due date). Needles are placed in the hands, feet lower leg and lower back and left in place for 20 minutes. It can be beneficial to have several consecutive treatments for 2-4 days. There may be circumstances when it would be appropriate to consider this treatment prior to 41 weeks, but only under consultation with your midwife and/or consultant obstetrician.
The points we use are very proactive in stimulating the body to help signal that it is time to deliver the baby. These are the points that are never used during pregnancy, because they are so effective in stimulating the body to open and release. Many mothers find this treatment reassuring; it is very gentle and safe, and most mothers find it helps to ease the pressure they may feel about having a hospital induction. In my experience having the acupuncture induction treatment seems to help the body to cope better if a hospital induction becomes necessary.
Following birth women can encounter many challenges. Labour recovery, breastfeeding difficulties, mastitis, anxiety, fatigue, constipation and haemorrhoids and postnatal depression can all complicate the first few months of being a new mum. Designed for a smooth recovery from birth my home visits package allows you peace of mind, as I provide the necessary essential care to help make your transition from birth to mum as comfortable and healthy as possible.
This service includes 2 in-home postnatal visits. The first in home visit is within the first 4-5 days postpartum and the second within the second week postpartum.
Mother warming is one of my favorite treatments after a women gives birth. It is a treatment where the woman is warmed. Different cultures have been using this treatment for hundreds of years and it is believed that it helps to keep the cold out of the mother's vulnerable body after giving birth. Treatment is usually done 4-5 days after the woman gives birth. This is a delicious treatment which takes approx 20 mins and is helpful for promoting the uterus to contract, helping promote the cleaning bleed, replenishing the mother's blood, vitalizing the hormonal shifts and helping to promote fluency of lactation. It can also help with the healing process for c-sections and also helps to strengthen the lower back.
Mothers love the warming effect of this treatment and find it helps them to feel relaxed and calm.
Breastfeeding is a natural process that can easily complicate. Many women may find it a straightforward procedure that comes very naturally and there are also women who find it is a difficult and sometimes demoralizing experience.
Acupuncture can address many of the complications of breastfeeding including:
- blocked ducts
- breast pain
- insufficient lactation
- over production of milk
"I wanted to write a long time ago, but time has just flown since I last saw you as we moved out of Blackburn to the countryside and I fell pregnant in November 2013!! My baby girl was born August 2013 and life is wonderful! Thank you so much for your help and advice and the lovely treatments you gave me. You were very kind when I was at the end of my tether! "