When a couple becomes pregnant it can be both an anxiety-generating and exciting experience at the same time. Pregnancy leads to dramatic emotional and physical changes in a woman and when she is prepared and understands these metamorphoses, she can maximize her own health as well as that of the unborn fetus growing inside her.
Once a woman conceives, her menstrual cycle ceases. This is due to the increased production of progesterone and estrogen in her body. There are women who might also experience spotting implantation from the moment of implantation (around 6 days to a week after fertilization) to a month or 35 days after her last period. There are about 50% of women who will experience vomiting and nausea during the gestation period which might last a couple of weeks to 12 weeks. All these pregnancy-related manifestations may happen at any moment of the day and may be triggered by benign and strong odors. Stress and emotional tension may also exacerbate nausea and induce a vomiting reaction. Pain or a tingling sensation that may accompany breast tenderness can also be felt as well as changes in blood flow that can result in spider veins, varicose veins or the swelling of the breast. The areola and nipples grow in size and become darker in color. After 4 months’ gestation, the breast may start to secrete Colostrum.
At around the 18th to the 20th week (during a woman’s first pregnancy), fetal movement may already be felt. On succeeding pregnancies, this movement may be experienced during the 14t to the 16th week. Increased pressure and discomfort in the urinary bladder may also be felt because of the woman’s enlarged uterus. Pregnant women are also twice as prone to urinary tract infections compared to non-pregnant women. Throughout pregnancy, the body of a woman tends to have an elevated basal body temperature which makes hot weather and summer a bit intolerable for her. Her skin may suffer from stretch marks and turn a bit dark also during this time. Her mucus linings may thicken which can result in nasal discomfort and congestion.
All these changes can make pregnancy an overall uncomfortable experience. The good news is that these changes do not necessarily need to make you feel miserable as there are proven and safe ways to help you overcome these unwanted pregnancy-related symptoms. The truth is there are some women who have quite a relatively problem-free pregnancy where the discomfort and symptoms are at a minimum and there are others who can’t wait for the pregnancy to be over. How a woman experiences pregnancy can be seen in her genetics. The way the mother of the pregnant underwent her own pregnancy will probably be reflected in the same manner by the mother-to-be. Factors such as diet and lifestyle are also huge factors that can determine the kind of pregnancy a woman will have. If the woman is always stressed out and lives an unhealthy lifestyle (she consumes a lot of sugar, takes in caffeine, smokes, or abuses alcohol), it can lead to negative pregnancy symptoms. If her first pregnancy was accompanied by symptoms such as vomiting and nausea, chances are high that these symptoms will return during her succeeding pregnancies.
Pregnancy- related complications and symptoms can be addressed with Chinese medicine. This Eastern modality has been practiced for thousands of years to resolve complications and symptoms during pregnancy. Chinese Medicine is a very useful way to help treat and control pregnancy -related conditions like low fetal weight, low back pain, colds, fibroids, gestational diabetes, vomiting, nausea, for the prevention of preeclampsia and many others. Certain Chinese herbs and acupuncture can be safely used and are extremely effective especially for mothers-to-be past the age of 35 who are more prone to complications. For vomiting and nausea caused by pregnancy, acupuncture wristbands or needles and ginger tea can provide relief. For severe conditions, providing acupuncture treatment may not eradicate all the symptoms but it can help lower the intensity.
Many patients have found the herbs such as astralagus, cardamom, and ginger can help quell a lot of the symptoms of pregnancy.
For the proper control of placenta previa and miscarriage prevention, certain Chinese medical treatments can be used. Some of these treatments can even help resolve cervical leakage. Acupuncture and Tui Na massage may be apt for the treatment of back pain especially during the last trimester of gestation. For breech positions, a basic treatment involving moxibustion and acupuncture can be used. Studies show that the combination of these two Chinese medicine modalities can lead to a 90% effective rate of treatment in patients which means that these patients no longer need to consider surgery for their condition.
If are currently pregnant or planning for it, consult with a qualified acupuncturist who can explain to your how to achieve a relatively easy and healthy pregnancy. To sum up, Chinese medicine can be a safe and great way of managing a number of your symptoms brought about by pregnancy without any adverse side effects to both the fetus and the mother.
Emily Farish Acupuncture
400 S. Jefferson, Suite 203
Spokane, WA 99204