Acupuncture and Pregnancy
Article contributed by guest writer and De La Heart #W2W feature, Dr. Elizabeth Trattner. Dr. Trattner is also Gigi's acupuncturist.
For women looking to get pregnant, Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture offer a comprehensive way to help build up a woman to become pregnant, sustain her pregnancy and to support her in optimal health after her baby is born.
It is very important to seek out an acupuncturist who has experience with women’s health and infertility. Generally, practitioners should be practicing for a minimum of 5 years. Patients preparing for pregnancy general require weekly treatments depending on the extent of their infertility and or pregnancy issues. And a treatment during menstruation will be very different from a treatment just before, during ovulation and after ovulation. That is the beauty of how Chinese Medicine and acupuncture can assist women during various stages of becoming pregnant.
Acupuncture has been very success for women experiencing infertility. I have seen firsthand in my practice how patients can become pregnant with the assistance of Traditional Chinese Medicine and acupuncture. It can be as simple as a patient becoming more regular and soon misses a period to find out she is pregnant. One patient, who had invested $100,000 in infertility treatments before coming to me got pregnant after 6 weeks of acupuncture treatments. Getting her back on a regular cycle facilitated her having a second child without any other fertility treatments!
Acupuncture can boost women’s fertility in many ways. There are so many reasons in Chinese Medicine principles why a woman may be unable to conceive. It can be as simple as lack of blood flow to the uterus to something more complex such as polycystic ovary disease or a complicated history of miscarriages. By building women’s energy and blood in their bodies and correcting imbalances that Western medicine has no way to describe or treat is where acupuncture shines! Acupuncture is a medical system into itself and offers a distinct approach to diagnosing medical conditions as compared to Western medicine that we can give shape and form to why a woman cannot conceive.
A randomized, prospective trial showed that even a single session of acupuncture can increase the chances of pregnancy in infertile women. Clinical and experimental evidence shows that acupuncture has long-lasting benefits for women who suffer from polycystic ovaries syndrome (PCOS) and who do not ovulate.
Acupuncture before IVF increases chances of conception by 65%.
Acupuncture can lower arterial uterine blood flow impedance, key to optimal endometrial receptivity.
Acupuncture can help sustain a mother’s pregnancy by helping build her body up during pregnancy, relieve pain like sciatica, and lower back and groin pain. It helps reduce stress in a mother’s body, helps improve sleep quality and can also helps with morning sickness.
Acupuncture is excellent for induction of labor and assisting in turning a breech baby. I personally took a colleague into the labor and delivery room with me when I had my daughter years ago. It made me much more comfortable during the entire labor process which was 36 hours!
Acupuncture can help new moms recover faster after pregnancy, increase the production of milk and assist in re-regulating hormones after birth so new moms can feel better faster. In Chinese medicine we refer to the “fourth trimester” in which we care for the mother so she can regain her energy, and blood supply lost in the birth process. It is an important time to regenerate new moms after pregnancy.
Acupuncture is great for women because in today’s world, women are challenged by the effects of modernization. It isn’t just with fertility, but a wide range of health-related issues. Stress, diet, poor food choices, menstrual disorders, and the increase of auto immune disorders are just a few reasons why it is excellent for women to consider the benefits of acupuncture.
Dr. Elizabeth Trattner