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Acupuncture and Pregnancy

fetus face

What are YOU doing to consciously grow a healthy Baby in utero? 

Most people don’t realize that the Chinese Culture & Chinese medicine revered the process of pregnancy and has much to offer this time in a woman’s life.  There are certain years that are more fortunate to be born. There are certain foods that are better to eat in certain months. There is much awareness of the baby’s development while in the womb and much attention paid to each month of the process.

Take, for instance, the first month of pregnancy. In the first trimester of pregnancy, it is important to pay attention to the mother’s digestion. We see evidence of this with morning sickness. If a woman’s digestion is weak, it is believed she will pass this on to her child, which is the ground, work for all sorts of health problems in the new life to come.

At this time of pregnancy, it is suggested, a woman should refrain from anger, which upsets the digestion and from worry as well.

It is important to eat sweet, though more like fruit, and sour thing and things that are easy to digest, mostly warm foods. Sticky rice is recommended along with sweet potatoes, baked beets, and root vegetables. All of these foods are nourishing to the blood  and so are nourishing to the embryo.

Absolutely no Sushi at this stage of pregnancy as it is too cold and upsets the digestion.

It’s also said that it’s important not to over exercise at this time of pregnancy, for obvious reasons, that a woman is still in the early stages and creating moderate habits is most important.

There are herbs and various, acupuncture treatments recommended at this time, once again, not too much and all geared to the health and vitality of the newly forming life.

For  a different and simpler slant on preparing yourself for the coming of this new life, pick up Sally Huss’ new little e book called: “ THE GOLDEN CHILD METHOD –BRINGING IN GOOD KIDS” You can get it by clicking here:

Thanks for reading. Enjoy growing your baby!


Acupuncture for Breech Presentation

About 4% of babies are affected by breech presentation.

The most effective time to work on turning a breech baby is between the 34th and 37h week. If you know your baby is breech before your 35th week, it is best to start trying to turn the baby as early as possible.

The way we work with acupuncture is to hold a cigar like herbal compound of the herb called Mugwort, close to the little tow of the mother. Sometimes a few acupuncture points are treated, at the same time but the primary aspect of the treatment is the mugwort.

Everyone who has had this treatment asks why heating up the little toe works. The little toe is the end of a channel, which is a series of acupuncture points, which go up the back of the leg to the sacrum and up the length of the back to the front of the head. It’s a very long channel. By stimulating the little toe with the herb, the channel is stimulated up into the sacrum, creating space in the pelvic area for the baby to move around. In no way is the baby stimulated. Only the mother’s womb is relaxed so the baby has room to move.

Statistics say that this procedure does work between 69 and 85% of the time, so it’s worth checking into, even for those who are skeptical at heart!

Sometimes the baby does move a lot during the treatment. Often the mother will feel some tightening and loosening of her bely.

This is a simple, non-invasive treatment which can be very effective. Often this treatment when used along with Chiropractic treatments from a Chiropractor who is familiar with turning a breech baby, is very successful. In any case, it is always worth a try.!

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Pre-labor acupuncture

Acupuncture in Pre-birth treatments

The most efficient, effective and non-invasive way to use acupuncture to help with delivery is to have acupuncture treatments before giving birth. In a study by Debra Betts and S. Lennox, printed in Medical Acupuncture2006 May 17(3):17-20 and titled: Acupuncture for prebirth treatment: An observational study of its use in midwifery practice, these results were found:

Acupuncture in pre birth treatment refers to receiving a series of treatments in the final weeks of pregnancy, which prepare women for childbirth. Research has shown that pre-birth Acupuncture can assist you in:

  • shortening the length of your labor
  • achieving 3-4 cm cervical dilation before going into labor
  • shortening the time of the first stage of your labor
  • reducing the chance that you may need to have your labor induced by 35% (43% for first births)
  • increasing your opportunity for cervical ripening before going into labor
  • reducing your chances of emergency caesarean by 32%

Research shows that the use of acupuncture from the 37th week of gestation until delivery can significantly improve the experience of labor and childbirth. Points are used to ripen the cervix, to promote optimal energy and stamina for the mother, and to help position the baby in the best position for labor.

In considering using acupuncture to aid in readying a woman for delivery, stimulating contractions is not enough. It is best to help women thru natural birth by ripening the cervix. This is not just about the cervix opening up. Sometimes women have a hard cervix. It is important that the effacement of the cervix thins out and thin down. When it's thins, it softens and it opens up. If the cervix is 3-4 cm dilated before going into labor, the mother’s body is better prepared, relaxed, open and ready to give birth naturally.

preg drawing

Posterior Position

Positioning is also important as that will help with ripening the cervix. It is important that the baby's chin is tucked down. This is a flexed head. When the head is not in a position of being flexed, this is a deflexed head. In this position, the head is 2cm larger for going through the birth canal. This is the posterior position, which creates complications in childbirth.

baby belly_image

Top 5 Tips for Childbirth

  1. Have pre-birth acupuncture – Acupuncture once a week from your 37th week till birth will help to prepare you for childbirth. . Research has shown that pre-birth acupuncture offers reduced time spent in labor, and reduced rate of medical intervention. Acupuncture is a great way to help women prepare themselves for  the most efficient labour physically and emotionally It can help the woman’s body prepare for birth, preparing the cervix and pelvis for labor It can deal with medical conditions such as pregnancy induced hypertension, heartburn and hemorrhoid. Pre birth acupuncture reduces intervention rates such as epidurals, caesareans and syntocinon. It also reduces the time spent in labor.
  2. Diet - Avoid spicy, pungent and greasy foods in later stages of pregnancy. These can produce more mucus.
  3. Go to and download a great booklet on acupressure for stress and pain relief during labor.
  4. Practice Squatting, kneeling, sitting, walking, standing and leaning positions for labour.
  5. Consider using acupuncture to aid with birth, when birthing with a midwife, for pain relief.

For more information on which way your baby is turned, go to:

For a brochure called ‘why induction’ go to:

For more information on the research referred to in this article and for a download of the acupressure points which are most useful for childbirth, go to, click on Pain Relief in Childbirth. Go to the right column for  information and click on download the booklet.

Written by: MaryAnne Bachia, L. Ac. And Chinese Herbalist, Acupuncture Energy Works of Boulder, Co ( with an office in Cherry Creek, Co),Louisville, Co and 5377 Manhatten Circle, Boulder, Co 80303; 720-201-4101

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