In a nutshell, Community Acupuncture is
high volume acupuncture provided in a supportive group setting, points mainly on the arms and legs, at sliding scale rates – at Heart & Hands, our rates are $20-40/session. It makes acupuncture an accessible option to a wider range of individuals who otherwise could not afford the going rate for acupuncture. It is a modern take on how acupuncture is traditionally provided in Asia; in a large open space, treating many people at once, quickly, efficiently and effectively.
Acupuncture is a dose dependent therapy and that the benefits are achieved by frequency, and less so by individual doses. Therefore, the appropriate treatment plan is key in assisting the gradual process for resolving issues and promoting recovery. It becomes more accessible for clients to access as much treatment as often as they need.
So, Community Acupuncture is an ideal therapy for expectant mothers and it offers so much more than labour induction to promote a happy, healthy pregnancy and beyond!
I didn’t know I could I receive acupuncture during pregnancy?!!?
Community Acupuncture is extremely helpful for supporting pre and post-natal conditions. It is natural, drug-free, minimally invasive and focuses on preventative care to ensure optimally positive outcomes, not to mention being accessible, affordable and community-based!
Acupuncture is commonly recommended for a variety of pregnancy-related issues including:
- Fatigue, anemia, hypoglycemia
- Morning sickness & other digestive issues (constipation, heart burn)
- Body pain – lower back, sciatica, pelvic/pubic pain, etc.
- Threatened miscarriage
- Edema, low blood pressure
- Headaches, hypertension, pre-eclampsia
- Gestational diabetes & other metabolic/hormonal disorders
- Pre-term bleeding
- Varicose veins, hemorrhoids & vulvual varicosities
- Breech or posterior babies
- Labour preparation, pre-birth & induction (a safe alternative and/or complement to medical induction)
- Postpartum care – recovery from childbirth, depression, breastfeeding, etc.
What is pre-birth acupuncture?
Pre-birth acupuncture is an individualized treatment plan for preparation of childbirth. It is recommended starting around 36-37 weeks up till term (~40 weeks) for both first time as well as mothers who have carried previous pregnancies. We usually recommend sessions once a week or as required based on other accompanying symptoms.
The objective is to promote positive outcomes in the weeks leading to childbirth as well as decreasing pain and complications during and after childbirth. Acupuncture can support and prepare a mother’s body for a more effective, natural vaginal birth. It has also been shown to decrease the incidence of
complications such as requiring medical induction and/or cesarian section.
The benefits of pre-birth acupuncture include:
- Cervical softening/ripening/dilation
- Supporting, regulating hormonal levels leading up to labour
- Emotional support – ie. addressing fear & anxiety prior to childbirth, post-partum depression
- Encouraging optimal fetal positioning and/or addressing breech/posterior positioning
- Potentially decreasing pain and exhaustion during labour + enhancing efficiency of labour
- Encouraging oxytocin release – oxytocin receptors in the uterus gradually increase up to 36 weeks
- Addressing progressive, ongoing issues during pregnancy such as musculo-skeletal pain, gestational diabetes, edema, anemia, etc.
- Potentially a faster recovery, less complications following childbirth
- Promoting lactation, supporting breastfeeding
We sometimes recommend acupressure for further support at home.
Click HERE for some resources.
From the perspective of the Heart & Hands Acupuncture Team:
“I love seeing pregnant bellies in our chairs. So many issues that come up during pregnancy are intense and acute. Acupuncture is a safe, effective, drug-free treatment for many of these challenges. The most common treatments we provide are for labour prep and induction, but we also help many expectant mothers with morning sickness and fatigue in their first trimester, and swelling and body pains toward the end of their pregnancies.
Acupuncture is also hugely helpful for the stress and anxiety that often shows up in the weeks leading up to labour, the difficulty sleeping through the night, the acid reflux and heartburn as a result of a nearly-grown fetus pressing up on your stomach constantly.
I’ve also helped new mothers address challenges such as mastitis, insomnia, fatigue, low appetite, and body pains that may come as a result of having a new baby at home.
Community Acupuncture is accessible, affordable support for you and your family during all stages of pregnancy, into labour, and as you transition into life as a new mother.”
“I was recently told by a woman that acupuncture is the first form of treatment to be recommended by her midwife because it is so safe and side-effect-free.
As an acupuncturist I have seen expectant mothers in all stages of pregnancy, from preconception to new motherhood. It’s always a pleasure and privilege to be a part of this journey. So many things come during pregnancy that can be expected, or completely unexpected, and so I always get asked “Can acupuncture help…?” The answer is typically, “Yes”.
It’s great being able to provide help and assistance for the mothers in a way that I know is going to effective and, importantly, safe.”
–Rory Knapp-Fisher, R.Ac.
“As our reputation continues to grow in the community that we are a safe and welcoming space for expectant mothers, I slowly want to shift attitudes around preventative care and improving quality of life before, during and after pregnancy. It is possible to minimize many of the unpleasant symptoms that accompany the process of gestating a brand new life and that it is unnecessary to suffer through your pregnancy or become completely depleted after giving birth.
Here at Heart & Hands, we would love to be a continual and regular support THROUGHOUT your pregnancy journey, ensuring that you have a positive and best possible outcome for you, your progressing, changing pregnant body and of course, the baby.
We are always delighted to treat expectant mothers, but we are wanting to send the message that Acupuncture provides SO MUCH MORE than just labour induction. Its not really the ideal experience for practitioner or client when someone’s first acupuncture experience is labour induction, which can be intense and frightening.
From my experience, the baby decides when it’s ready to enter the world, so I’d rather shift my focus onto supporting the mother. And while supporting the labour process is important, I have yet to meet someone who hasn’t experienced some amount of discomfort during those 40 odd weeks of pregnancy and which is just as beneficial to address, if not more than just getting past the due date! We want to provide wonderful, natural health care to individuals throughout + following this amazing physical, emotional and spiritual transition :)”
–Christina Chan, R.Ac.