Acupuncture for Pregnancy
An Australian study showed its particular effectiveness in relieving morning sickness or the potentially more dangerous hyperemesis gravidarum (severe vomiting during pregnancy). The study, published in the journal Birth, reportes that of 593 women less than 14 weeks pregnant who participated, those who received traditional acupuncture reported having less frequent and shorter periods of nausea than the women who received no acupuncture. These improvements were felt immediately and lasted throughout the studyís four-week duration. In the first trimester, acupuncture can also relieve fatigue, migraines and bleeding.
Daniel Maxwell, a member of the British Acupuncture Council, the regulatory body for acupuncturists, said "the benefits of acupuncture for pregnant women was well known. Many pregnant women turn to acupuncture to relieve pain, especially pelvic pain. It is good because it does not involve any drugs, which women have to be careful about taking during pregnancy." But he said the medical profession needed to be more consistent in recommending acupuncture as a treatment. "Some GPs and midwives do refer people on for acupuncture, but some don't. It really does vary from area to area."
Dr Graham Archard, vice-chair of the Royal College of GPs, said 60% of family doctors use alternative therapies. "The use of acupuncture to treat pain during pregnancy certainly seems credible." "Pregnant women should be avoiding drugs so acupuncture, which releases the bodies natural painkillers, should be of benefit."