• Sharon Waltho

Acupuncture May Help Health Related Issues During Pregnancy

Updated: Dec 9, 2021


The excitement of pregnancy is often marred by health related issues that western medicine is unable to help with. During my pregnancies I had no idea that there were any alternatives other than to just get on with it and be grateful that I was pregnant. However, I now know that this is not the case and something as old as acupuncture may be beneficial and help you to enjoy your pregnancy.


I feel very lucky to have had the privilege of attending a training course in maternity acupuncture with Debra Betts, a New Zealand acupuncturist. Here I learnt that women in New Zealand are being successfully supported with acupuncture by midwives in clinic for a variety of pregnancy related ailments including;

  • morning sickness

  • heartburn

  • headaches

  • exhaustion

  • insomnia

  • stress

  • depression

  • oedema

  • carpal tunnel syndrome

  • pubis symphysis pain

  • back pain

  • bleeding

  • haemorrhoids,

  • vulval varicosities

  • varicose veins

  • abnormal blood pressure


Research has shown that acupuncture carried out correctly is safe with few adverse events (Park J, Sohn Y, White AR, Lee H. The safety of acupuncture during pregnancy: a systematic review. Acupunct Med. 2014 Jun;32(3):257-66. doi: 10.1136/acupmed-2013-010480. Epub 2014 Feb 19. PMID: 24554789; PMCID: PMC4112450), and may be used to assist with the above mentioned health issues, as well as other pregnancy conditions including;

  • breech presentation

  • From 36 weeks treatments are planned to assist in the preparation for birth to help avoid complications and interventions during labour. Research can be found on the Debra Betts website

I also discovered how beneficial acupuncture could be during the first few weeks following delivery to help to ensure a smoother transition into motherhood. This is a time when a new mum needs to be nurtured so that she can recover from the labour and pregnancy and take the best care of her baby. Again, acupuncture may support her, for example, with milk let down, breast feeding, mastitis, baby blues, fatigue, urination, after pains and oedema….


Some of you reading this may already use acupuncture as a regular health benefit, or acupuncture may have helped you during your fertility journey, but for others acupuncture may not have crossed your minds. So if you are experiencing difficulties with your pregnancy and would like more information, please get in touch.


Sharon


Resources

Cochrane Review https://www.cochrane.org

Debra Betts https://www.acupuncture.rhizome.net.nz


For more information about acupuncture in pregnancy or to find out more about the research please visit Debra Betts website by clicking here

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