Acupuncture and Labor

While it can be hard work to deliver a child, labor can also be a beautiful experience with a truly miraculous outcome.

How you take care of yourself really affects how you feel throughout your pregnancy and how your labor proceeds. Acupuncture can be an important part of relieving the aches and pains of pregnancy, reducing pregnancy-related ailments, and can also help to prepare your body for a healthy and successful labor.

Acupuncture relieves pain during pregnancy

During pregnancy, acupuncture helps alleviate a number of common pregnancy maladies, such as:

  • Constipation

  • FatigueAnemia

  • Headaches

  • Heartburn

  • Persistent nausea or vomiting

  • Sinusitis

  • Skin rashes

Acupuncture also can reduce the discomfort that goes along with these conditions that are common in pregnancy:

  • Varicose veins

  • Hemorrhoids

  • General pain, such as sciatica, leg cramps or even carpal tunnel syndrome

Perhaps most importantly, leading up to labor and delivery, acupuncture can help you manage stress and anxiety. Acupuncture has been shown to reduce levels of stress hormones and promotes a sense of relaxation and well-being.

Acupuncture and Labor

There is research that shows acupuncture can help with labor. Women who are treated with acupuncture at least once a week in the months prior to labor have shorter labors, fewer medical inductions and fewer emergency caesareans.

One study showed that 70% of the women who received acupuncture treatments went into labor on their own, compared to 50% who did not have treatments. The women who got acupuncture were also less likely to need a cesarean section to deliver their baby.

If you know ahead of your due date that your baby is in the breech or posterior position, acupuncture can help. A treatment using acupuncture and moxa therapy (Chinese herbs) has been shown to successfully correct a breech/posterior position in many cases.

If you are scheduled for a medical induction, acupuncture can soften and relax muscles and tendons and encourage the start of labor.

If your partner learns how to use acupressure points before you go into labor, he or she can become an active participant in delivering your baby by using acupressure to relieve your pain during labor.

How to Prolong the Positive Effects of your Acupuncture Treatment

Acupuncture is a proven and effective way to ease your pains during pregnancy and labor. During the 9 or 10 months that your body is the home for your baby, there are a number of other things you can do to ensure that you are taking care of yourself. Be sure you are:

  • Eating a wide variety of fresh foods

  • Continuing to exercise and moving your body in a safe manner

  • Taking a prenatal vitamin

  • Not eating foods that are potentially harmful such as raw fish, soft cheeses, as well as caffeine and alcohol

  • Avoiding harmful fumes and toxins, such as household cleaners

Learn more about the details of using acupuncture for fertility treatment.

Learn more about Acupuncture & Embryo Transfer.

Learn more about Acupuncture & Conception.

Learn more about Acupuncture & Early Pregnancy.

Learn more about Acupuncture & Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome

Learn more about Acupuncture & Male Infertility