What Acupuncture Can Do For Some Of The Most Common Pregnancy Pains

Acupuncture has long been known to help alleviate pain and discomfort (via Mayo Clinic). This form of traditional Chinese medicine utilizes thin needles inserted into the skin at certain areas in order to balance the chi or qi, which helps to restore a clear flow of energy in the body. When the flow is balanced, it's believed that health, wellness, calmness, and vitality will be restored as well.

Pregnancy is a time when your body is going through a lot of changes. You may even think your body going haywire. Along with the changes taking place, you may also experience discomforts and even aches and pains. Acupuncture can bring about much relief. According to a study in the journal Obstetrics & Gynecology, acupuncture has been shown to alleviate pelvic girdle pain — pain that stems from the baby pressing on the pelvic joints, lower back, hips, and thighs. The study also advises doctors to encourage acupuncture in their pregnant patients.

How acupuncture helps relieve the pains of pregnancy

While pelvic and lower back pain during pregnancy can range from uncomfortable to excruciating, there are many other discomforts of pregnancy that acupuncture can help. Double board certified gynecologist and family medicine specialist, Dr. Monica Grover explains, "Acupuncture during pregnancy can be very beneficial to relieve some of the common ailments people experience during pregnancy, such as nausea, vomiting, heartburn, constipation, poor circulation, insomnia, as well as anxiety, stress, and depression" (via Healthline).

"Acupuncture's premise of action is to unblock energy channels within the body effectively," says double board certified OB-GYN and maternal fetal medicine specialist Dr. Kecia Gaither. "While not specifically known, the proposed mechanism of action is that acupuncture may block or delay the pain signals from being sent to the brain, which reduces or eliminates the sensation of pain."

Acupuncture can help through all stages of pregnancy as needed. It's also thought to work well at soothing postpartum discomforts (via Sarah Johnson Acupuncture). Common postpartum issues that acupuncture can help with include anxiety, depression, mastitis (breast infection), night sweats, and issues with breastfeeding.