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Pregnancy and Childbirth

Pregnancy and Childbirth

Ante-natal Acupuncture

The most common complaints treated with acupuncture during early pregnancy are nausea and vomiting. The symptoms may range from mildly unpleasant feelings of morning sickness to extreme vomiting. Your midwife may suggest trying acupuncture to help moderate these symptoms. As pregnancy progresses some women may suffer some other very common ailments. Our aim is to alleviate these and help your pregnancy to be as comfortable as possible.
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Breast Feeding

Breast feeding is a special time for mother and baby. If there are any problems, it is important that prompt expert advice on feeding positions and the correct drainage of the milk passages is sought from your midwife or local breast-feeding support group. Acupuncture can provide additional reassurance and support if you are experiencing a great deal of worry.
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Turning Breech Babies

If your baby is in a breech position at 34-35 weeks we will teach you the "moxibustion protocol for breech babies". Moxibustion is the burning of the herb, moxa (artemisia vulgaris) and this is done is such a way that warmth is applied to the acupuncture point Bl67 Zhi Yin located on the outside of the little toe. Just one appointment needs to be booked with the acupuncturist to check for contra-indications and to receive a demonstatration, full tuition and moxa supplies. You need to be prepared to repeat the procedure every day for 10 days.
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Encouraging Spontaneous Labour

There are acupuncture points considered to have the potential to encourage spontaneous labour and these may be offered as part of your treatment from 40 weeks onwards on condition that there are no medical contraindications. Your practitioner may also provide guidance on self-administered acupressure to supplement the treatments in the days preceding a medical induction date. There are unfortunately however very few studies exploring the use of acupuncture to induce labour (Smith, C.A. & Crowther, C.A., 2004). Reference: Smith CA, Crowther CA. (2004) Acupuncture for induction of labour. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Issue 1
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Labour

Some individual members of the ACT Herts team may be able provide attendance during your labour. We also provide a labour rota service whereby a number of practitioners in Our Team will work together to provide you with the best possible 24-hour call-out coverage for your labour over the 2 weeks before and after your due delivery date. You can find details about the costs for this service on our Fees and Forms page. Alternatively, we can provide you and your birthing partner coaching in acupressure to cover some useful points. These can be easily applied by either you or your birthing partner during your labour. Please look through the members of Our Team to see if there is a practitioner near you who with whom you can discuss your labour requirements. Alternatively, please contact us from our Contact page and we will get in touch with you to establish your requirements and develop the best acupuncture support plan for you.
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Post-natal

Chinese medicine emphasises that the post-natal period (approximately 40 days) is a time when it is essential that the mother conserves her energy and regains her lost reserves. This is often very difficult to achieve, but acupuncture can help you in this important period through the physical, emotional and mental challenges that present. Post-natal treatment commonly involves the smouldering of the moxa herb (artemisia vulgaris) in addition to needles. Moxa is believed to be very nourishing to the mother, particularly in her abdominal area. The use of moxa can be taught to friends or family, so that the treatment can be continued at home. The ancient Chinese referred to this practice as "mother roasting".
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Pre-birth Acupuncture

Acupuncture in Pregnancy

Ask your acupuncturist about a pre-birth package. This is a sequence of treatments commencing at 36 or 37 weeks and aims to prepare your body for labour so that both you and baby are in optimal condition for the birth. Three or four treatments prior to your due date will help with relaxation and and build energy reserves. Mothers working close to their due dates may find this especially beneficial.
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