So, you are expecting a baby? That’s wonderful news. There is so much to think about and maybe it’s too early to think about the birth (it’s never too early to think about the birth). You may even be using acupuncture during your pregnancy; it can be a great support as your body changes both physically and emotionally. Did you know that you can use acupuncture right up to the birth? Some expectant mothers use it in two specific circumstances, to move a breech baby and also to avoid a medical induction.
How does acupuncture help to induce labor?
There are a few reasons why a mom-to-be might want to avoid a medical induction. An induction normally happens when a mother has reached full-term and the baby isn’t showing any signs of being born. A baby could also be induced due to underlying conditions such as diabetes or pre-eclampsia. If there are no underlying health conditions, there could be other reasons that a mom might want to avoid a medical induction. This could be because she wants to have a more natural birth experience with less medical/chemical intervention. Studies have shown that births that are induced tend to have more intervention than births that happen spontaneously. For moms who already have children, they may have had a negative experience during a previous induction and wish to avoid this next time round.
Acupuncture for induction has some great results and in many cases women have a faster and more comfortable labor experience. There are specific acupuncture points that encourage the cervix to ripen, stimulate uterine function and help contractions to become consistent and efficient. In addition to these physical effects there are some great emotional benefits too. Acupuncture is a relaxing and calming experience. Many expectant mothers comment on the intense feeling of wellbeing that they experience during acupuncture sessions and this comes into its own pre-labor, as a relaxed body will help to promote a more efficient and faster labor. Additionally, acupuncture boosts energy and let’s face it giving birth requires a huge amount of energy! Evidence shows that one of the major causes of a labor slowing down is extreme tiredness, particularly in the face of painful contractions.
I have worked with many expectant Mothers in preparation for labor as a way of getting the mind-body in optimum condition for an efficient birth experience. When the body is ready, acupuncture will help to kick-start the process. Why not add acupuncture to your birth plan? You should look at starting sessions for pre-labor at around the 32-36 week mark to ensure that your body is fully prepared.
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Los Angeles, Fertility Acupuncture clinic