Acupuncture In Pregnancy
Acupuncture is an excellent way to help your body prepare for labor. Weekly sessions during the final month of pregnancy, beginning around week 36, can help prepare the mother for an efficient childbirth. I mean really, labor isn’t something we need to draw out!
In fact, research has shown that first time mothers who had weekly acupuncture for labor preparation had an average reduction of 2 hours of time spent in labor compared to the control group. Not only does acupuncture for labor preparation appear to reduce labor time but it also reduces the rate of medical intervention. Amazing, right?
Prepare for Labor
How does Acupuncture Prepare Women for Labor?
Acupuncture helps regulate the qi and blood flow before delivery. Through balancing the mother’s energy prior to the onset of labor, the body is in its best possible state to begin the process of labor and delivery. This preparation facilitates labor by allowing for a more rapid progression of the natural stages of labor and a less complicated delivery. Specifically, acupuncture for labor preparation can help to:
- soften and dilate the cervix
- relax the pelvic ligaments
- support the mother’s qi or energy
- help the baby descend into the birth canal
- encourage optimal positioning of the baby for delivery
Another benefit is that women who have acupuncture for labor preparation tend to go into labor naturally around their due dates. They are therefore less likely to need acupuncture for labor induction or any other medical intervention to induce labor.
Weekly sessions of acupuncture before the baby’s due date can help address other common conditions experienced in the final weeks of pregnancy. As pregnancy progresses, a woman’s body constantly shifts to accommodate the new developments occurring within. Oftentimes, these changes result in physical or emotional discomforts for the mother such as nasal congestion, heartburn, constipation, hemorrhoids, varicose veins, back pain, swelling, breech baby, fatigue, stress, fear and anxiety. These pregnancy related conditions respond very well to acupuncture treatment and can be safely treated at any point during pregnancy.
Regular treatments toward the end of pregnancy offer the advantage of continually realigning the body’s qi and maintaining the mother’s wellbeing while preparing for labor. Labor preparation is certainly important but it is also important to enjoy a healthy pregnancy start to finish with proper rest, diet and a calm emotional state. Let’s face it, being pregnant can be stressful. It’s good to know there are safe, non-invasive yet effective natural options available to treat a whole host of pregnancy related conditions.