One of the most commonly asked questions is whether acupuncture is safe during pregnancy ?

The answer is a wholehearted yes! When in the hands of a skilled practitioner experienced in working with pregnancy, there are endless benefits throughout the 40 weeks of growth and transformation for you both. In general, acupuncture is very supportive for a healthy pregnancy by way of energy and immune boosting, as well as stress reduction. The first trimester often presents with a host of uncomfortable symptoms, however, patients receiving acupuncture regularly experience relief of nausea, vomiting, headaches, fatigue, and insomnia, as well as the reduction of anxiety levels during the first trimester and beyond.  Other common pregnancy related issues that acupuncture safely and effectively addresses include; heartburn, vomiting, constipation, hemorrhoids, back pain, fatigue, insomnia, depression, headaches, sinusitis, and swelling.


Breech Position and Correction

The misalignment of your baby may become a significant concern in the third trimester. Acupuncture and moxibustion therapy have proven highly effective in addressing this issue. It is advisable to begin treatment around week 34 to allow sufficient time for encouraging the baby to reposition, although later interventions have also demonstrated effectiveness.

Labor Preparation

Utilizing acupuncture as a routine pre-birth treatment is a very helpful way to prepare the body for labor, with the goal of encouraging a smooth delivery by the due date. Starting at 35 weeks, acupuncture sessions start to incorporate points that help ripen the cervix and encourage the baby to descend into the pelvis. Research and the feedback of midwives has suggested a range of positive effects that go beyond the reduction of time in labor but also less medical intervention and significant improvement in delivery outcomes for mother and baby.


Postpartum Care

A baby’s arrival is such a precious time of learning and assimilating into a new life, and all the months of readying still can’t truly prepare a woman for the vital role she will now have. It takes a tremendous amount of energy to carry through birth, no matter what form that takes. There is natural depletion that ensues from normal blood loss during delivery or surgery, the then lack of consistent sleep, and endless feedings. Treatment with acupuncture and Chinese herbs aims to restore and rebuild the lost Qi and Blood of the body, thus having a re-energizing and uplifting effect. We can also address common postpartum issues of diminished milk supply, blocked milk ducts or mastitis, carpal tunnel, back or hip pain, insomnia, fatigue, prolonged bleeding, night sweats, hemorrhoids, lowered immunity, healing from surgery, and mood imbalances such as anxiety and depression. Some women choose to have home visits the first few weeks so they can quickly start to reboot as they settle into a new life and schedule. Please contact me directly for inquiries into bespoke private home visits.

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Common questions about Pregnancy and Postpartum

Is acupuncture safe during pregnancy ?

Acupuncture is completely safe and therapeutic during pregnancy when performed by a licensed acupuncturist with expertise in prenatal care.  Specialized practitioners such as myself, understand the unique needs and concerns of pregnant women and are well versed in the appropriate acupuncture points and techniques that are safe and beneficial during pregnancy. It's essential to communicate openly with both your acupuncturist and OB/Midwife about your pregnancy and any specific concerns or symptoms you may have. With proper communication and care, acupuncture is a valuable tool for managing various pregnancy-related discomforts and promoting overall well-being during this special time.

Can you really turn a breach baby with acupuncture ?

Acupuncture offers valuable support for breech babies by addressing various factors that may hinder their movement. Mothers often experience physical or emotional tension patterns that can restrict the baby's ability to turn. Acupuncture effectively reduces muscular tension, alleviates pain, and promotes proper alignment, thus facilitating optimal fetal positioning. Additionally, moxibustion, a technique involving the application of heat to specific acupuncture points, can further encourage fetal movement and create a conducive environment for turning. Acupuncture and moxibustion also serve as powerful tools for stress reduction and addressing emotional factors that may impede the baby's movement. Treatments are tailored to each individual, with specific acupuncture points selected based on individual needs and circumstances.

Can acupuncture help with morning sickness and other pregnancy-related symptoms ?

Acupuncture is very helpful in alleviating morning sickness, nausea, and vomiting. By tapping into our body's natural pathways, it can help calm down those queasy feelings and make those early months a bit more bearable. Additionally, acupuncture can help manage other common pregnancy discomforts such as back pain, pelvic pain, fatigue, insomnia, and stress. By promoting relaxation, improving circulation, and balancing hormones, acupuncture offers a holistic approach to supporting maternal well-being throughout pregnancy.

Are there specific acupuncture points that should be avoided during pregnancy ?

Certain acupuncture points are contraindicated during pregnancy, especially those that may stimulate uterine contractions, so it's crucial to seek care from a practitioner knowledgeable about prenatal acupuncture. 

Are there acupuncture techniques to help induce labor naturally or encourage cervical ripening ?

Specialized acupuncture techniques aimed at stimulating uterine contractions and promoting cervical dilation can be used to help induce labor naturally or encourage cervical ripening in expectant mothers. When your due date is approaching, we often increase the frequency of your acupuncture treatments to support ongoing stimulation to the uterus and encourage the baby to descend further into the pelvis. For example, acupuncture points on the lower back and legs are commonly targeted to encourage the downward movement of the baby and support cervical ripening.

How can acupuncture support postpartum recovery and address issues like fatigue or mood changes ?

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine are deeply restorative during the postpartum period, aiding the body in replenishing vital resources lost during childbirth, including blood, Qi (energy), and essence. These modalities have been utilized for thousands of years to support postpartum recovery, recognizing the significant physiological changes that occur after giving birth, that may lead to exhaustion and mood disorders. Specialized herbal formulas, tailored to individual needs, are particularly effective in promoting uterine recovery, enhancing future fertility, and balancing hormones. By addressing the body's inherent needs and promoting natural healing processes, acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine provide a gentle yet powerful approach to postpartum care, nurturing both physical and emotional well-being during this transformative time