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Can Acupuncture Help Relieve Nausea During Pregnancy?

A woman holding her baby bump

YES! Acupuncture is a safe, effective and drug-free treatment that helps to relieve nausea, vomiting and morning sickness during pregnancy.

Morning sickness is the most common pregnancy-related condition, occurring in about 70% of pregnancies. Generally, morning sickness begins around 6 weeks gestation and peaks between weeks 8-10. In most pregnancies, morning sickness will resolve by the end of the first trimester (12 weeks gestation). In rare circumstances, morning sickness can progress into a more severe condition called hyperemesis gravidarum (persistent nausea and vomiting that leads to dehydration and weight loss and usually requires hospitalization).

What are the signs and symptoms of morning sickness?

  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Food aversions
  • Sensitivity to smells and odors
  • Feeling queasy or dizzy
  • Excessive saliva or metallic taste in the mouth

What Causes Morning Sickness?

In Western Medicine, a sharp rise in HcG (the ‘pregnancy hormone’) is believed to be the cause of morning sickness. Once your body adjusts to the new hormones circulating and HcG begins to stabilize, you will start to see a decline in nausea and vomiting. Mild cases of nausea and vomiting is not harmful to the developing fetus, but can certainly be uncomfortable and unpleasant for the pregnant mother. Morning sickness has been compared to motion sickness or feeling hungover. So, it’s no wonder that although this is a temporary condition, feeling this way for the entire first trimester can significantly impact a woman’s ability to live her every day life.

How Can Acupuncture Help With Morning Sickness?

Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) have a lot to offer when it comes to morning sickness. Many women are hesitant to take medications or over the counter drugs during pregnancy which is why acupuncture has become such a popular treatment – it can provide symptom relief without any side effects.

In TCM, morning sickness is often attributed to an energetic imbalance in the stomach, spleen and liver organs. During pregnancy, more blood and Qi from these organs is re-directed towards the uterus and pelvis which leads to an imbalance of yin/yang in the digestive organs. The goal of the treatment will be symptom management as well as balancing your body’s constitution.

During your Initial Visit, we will take a full health history and assessment to determine which acupuncture points are best suited for you and your needs. If you have any other pregnancy-related conditions such as insomnia, constipation or headaches, we will also address those during your treatment.

What to Look For in an Acupuncturist

When choosing an acupuncturist, it is important to select someone who has training in Traditional Chinese Medicine. These practitioners will use the designation R.Ac (Registered Acupuncturist) or R.TCMP (Registered Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioner) and be registered with the CTCMPAO (College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of Ontario). You also want to look for someone who has extensive additional training in obstetrics from an Eastern and Western Medical perspective as well as years of experience working with the perinatal population.

About Amanda Barone, B.Sc., R.Ac, R. Kin

Amanda Barone is a Registered Acupuncturist and Kinesiologist, serving the Vaughan community since 2011. She has a clinical focus on treating infertility and obstetrics. Amanda provides free 15 minute phone consultations to determine if acupuncture is the right fit for you. Call her directly at 647.299.4631

Posted in Fertility & Pregnancy

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