Acupuncture to relieve discomforts during pregnancy
Acupuncture may relieve many of the discomforts a woman can experience during pregnancy. When you become pregnant it’s a very exciting time however your body is undergoing changes that you have never experienced before if this is your first pregnancy Pregnancy aches and pains. As the baby grows within you, your body goes through dramatic hormonal and physical changes.
We, at Qi for Life Acupuncture, do acupuncture as a support treatment at any stage or trimester of your pregnancy with the aim to help you cope with these changes. For example, musculoskeletal problems may arise as your body grows to accommodate the growing baby. This is from the progesterone affecting the ligaments.
The most common types of pain in pregnancy
We diagnose you individually according to the principals of Chinese medicine and do acupuncture to suit the unique changes in your body.
A lot of research has been done into the effects of acupuncture on pregnancy related aches and pains – a systematic review done in 2014 says that two low risk of bias acupuncture studies showed clinically and statistically that acupuncture may help low back and pelvic pain in pregnant women. 
Nausea and vomiting during pregnancy can occur at any time of the day or night even though it is called “morning sickness”. It is most likely to occur in the first trimester but can continue on further into the pregnancy. Every woman is different so we will ask you about your signs and symptoms and observe your tongue and pulse and from this form a Chinese medicine diagnosis.
A randomised controlled trial with 593 women who were up to 14 weeks pregnant found acupuncture to be an effective treatment for women in early pregnancy who experienced nausea and dry retching. 
At Qi for Life Acupuncture, we can also combine Chinese Herbal medicine to the acupuncture treatment to give relief to your nausea and vomiting with our easy to take Sunherbal Chinamed capsules. Using the principles of Chinese Medicine we will diagnose the cause of your morning sickness and the organ system that is affected and formulate a treatment plan using a set of acupuncture points suited to you individually.
Labour Preparation Acupuncture
A pregnant woman may seek acupuncture from 36 weeks onwards to prepare her body for labour and to have a delivery that’s as natural as possible. This is not the same as medical induction of labour where synthetic oxytocin is given intravenously to bring on contractions. Medical induction is different to the acupuncture; we do preparations in the weeks and days leading up to labour.
For the preparation of labour, specific acupuncture points are chosen to help with pain relief, fatigue, and to prepare a woman’s cervix and pelvis for birth. These acupuncture points would be contraindicated earlier in the pregnancy, as they are thought to soften and ripen the cervix and cause contractions. This is why these points are used late in the pregnancy as they may promote a more efficient labour.
There has been a lot of research done to determine the effect of acupuncture and electro acupuncture on the induction of labour, however, research studies are ongoing to support that acupuncture helps induce and aid a more efficient labour.