Pregnancy

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pregnant woman having backacheAcupuncture Works
About 3-4% of pregnant women end up with a baby who is in breech presentation at term. If you find yourself in that percentage, don’t worry! Acupuncture with moxibustion treatment is a highly effective, gentle way to turn around a breech presentation baby.

Research regularly shows success rates of 75%-95%. In a study from 2003, 90.2% of babies before 34 weeks had spontaneous cephalic version after treatment and the success rate for women who were given treatment after 34 weeks was 84.6%. (See research below.) We have seen these high success rates in our own practice.

What is Moxibustion?
Moxa is a name for the herb Artemisia vulgaris (mugwort or common wormwood) and moxibustion simply means the burning of this herb. This modality is used in Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) to promote healing, generate warmth in the body/channels, foster energy and movement, and to assist over-all healing in the body.  

How Does It Work to Turn a Baby?
Because of the warming, raising, and moving effect of moxa, it is used to encourage the baby to become more active to gain the momentum needed to reposition into the head-down/cephalic position. Moxa also influences the mother’s energy which assists the baby to correct malposition.The moxa sticks are lit and held above the indicated acupuncture point, UB 67. The acupuncture point UB 67 is the primary point used to activate the uterus. It is located on the outer, lower edge of both little toenails. This technique is useful for frank breech, transverse and complete breech presentations. Acupuncture is used in tandem with moxibustion to restore balance to the body’s energy and organ systems to support the correct position of the baby. It is also influential for strengthening the body for labor and delivery.

The cumulative effect of treatments given several days in a row contributes to the high success rate so we have developed a Breech Turn Package for our patients. Please see our pricing page on our website.  Treatments consist of five consecutive acupuncture and moxibustion treatments that directly influence the uterus and encourage correction of malposition.

Why Should You Get Breech Turn at The Nest?
We defer to one of our lovely patients—

The Nest has been a true place of physical and emotional health care and healing for me since long before my current pregnancy began, so when I found out at 36 weeks that my baby was breech, I felt so lucky to already know that I was in great, capable, and caring hands. The wisdom and resources of the acupuncturists at The Nest helped put my anxieties at ease —which is half the battle when it comes to breech positioning, from what I understand—as we laid out a plan and put it to work. My baby turned after just a few sessions, and I’m continuing to enjoy the incredible benefits of acupuncture through the remainder of my pregnancy.                                                                                                                                       -Amanda

SOURCES
Moxibustion explanation and 90.2% success rate

ABC News Reports Acupuncture and Moxibustion Turns Breech Babies

http://www.newsnet5.com/news/local-news/oh-cuyahoga/acupuncture-and-incense-help-turn-a-breech-baby

When combined with acupuncture, moxibustion resulted in fewer non-cephalic presentations at birth (RR 0.73, 95% CI 0.57 to 0.94), and fewer births by caesarean section (RR 0.79, 95% CI 0.64 to 0.98) compared with no treatment.

Cephalic version y moxibustion for breech presentation

 

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It is an example of the elegant symbiosis between mother and child: at birth a mother provides her child with the building blocks of his or her lifelong inner ecology, now referred to as our microbiome. 

Nature has created all the steps necessary for this to happen in succession from the first trimester to a vaginal birth and then continuing through breastfeeding. Parallel advancing studies in the microbiome as a whole and its genesis at birth are leading to what may be the most beneficial knowledge of human health.

What is the Microbiome?

A microbiome is the totality of microbes, their genetic elements (genomes), and environmental interactions in a particular environment.

Predominantly, these microbes are found in the gut and are what help us digest and assimilate food. Some microbes have evolved to fight undesirable bacteria and some undesirable bacteria has evolved to proliferate when beneficial bacteria is low. In this way, they are in constant communication with our immune system and are the root of allergic and auto-immune responses. If you have a complex microbiome, you are well set to assimilate nutrients and fend off bad bacteria.

A Gift From Mother to Child

Studies have shown that the microbiome of a pregnant woman is different from other women. During the first trimester of pregnancy, there is a dramatic shift and the bacteria Lactobacillus, normally found in the gut, begins to increase in the vaginal tract. Lactobacillus is needed to digest milk. During birth, the lactobacillus coats the baby and the baby ingests some of it. These microbes then begin to colonize in the infant’s digestive tract, helping him or her to digest milk. In studies, C-section babies were colonizing strains of the more harmful bacteria found on our skin and in hospitals, Staphylococcus and Acinetobacter. Interestingly, in one study, the C-section babies were developing a general composition of bacteria found on the skin of all of the delivering mothers, whereas the vaginally delivered babies bacteria was like a fingerprint of the mother’s system.

The foundation of the microbiome continues to build via breastfeeding. Six hundred strains of bacteria have been found in breast milk along with sugars called oligosaccharides that babies cannot digest but which feed the beneficial bacteria, ensuring a strong and useful microbiome. “As the child grows and the microbiome becomes more ecologically complex, it also tutors the immune system.”

What Does This Mean for Pregnant Women?

Pregnant women need to be informed about the importance and many benefits of vaginal birth and breastfeeding. Of course, C-sections are an important life saving option in an emergency. The wonderful thing about this new branch of research is that in cases of C-section delivery or inability to breastfeed, we are gaining the knowledge needed to provide another chance to build a baby’s ecosystem if there is a re-route from the way nature intended this process.

Traditional Chinese Medicine Has Long Known a Child’s Health Begins In the Gut and With the Parents

TCM doctors are adept at diagnosing imbalances rooted in the gut and digestion, which is the most common root problem in children. If your child has digestive or other constitutional issues, or was born via C-section and you want to make sure he or she has the strongest beginning possible, a TCM practitioner can help. If you have questions, please feel free to call. We offer a free ten minute consultation so you will have time to ask your questions.

Sources:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/06/19/science/studies-of-human-microbiome-yield-new-insights.html?pagewanted=2&_r=4&src=recg

http://www.drmomma.org/2010/06/babys-beneficial-bacteria-depend-on.html

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Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) is a common hormonal disorder affecting as many as 1 out of 15 women.

PCOS is caused when hormone production grows out of balance, typically with the ovaries producing more androgen hormone than is needed. Researchers also believe there is a link with insulin resistance. Many women with PCOS have elevated levels of insulin in their bodies and excess insulin appears to increase production of androgen.

PCOS may cause women to stop ovulating, have irregular periods, or grow small cysts on the ovaries. Many women aren’t diagnosed until they have trouble becoming pregnant. Fortunately, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) has a long history of treating PCOS. It was first written about in The Complete Book of Effective Prescriptions for Diseases of Women. Published in 1237 A.D., it was the first book devoted solely to gynecology and obstetrics in Chinese Medicine.

 

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) views PCOS as stagnation in the body.

When there is stagnation in the body it impedes the flow of energy and blood. In the case of PCOS, the stagnation is related to the lower part of the body. TCM employs acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine to address the stagnation and hormone imbalance and thus help regulate menstrual cycles and promote ovulation. Chinese medicine is unique in that it considers the entire landscape of the body and treats imbalance and disease at the root of the problem. As such, patients benefit from an improvement in their overall health as a result of treatment.

 

Hearing from someone who has gone through the ups and downs of fertility treatment can sometimes provide the greatest comfort and help.

We thank Adriana for sharing her story of overcoming the diagnosis of PCOS and infertility. We hope it gives you hope and empowers you in your quest for treatment.

I always had irregular periods and was diagnosed with PCOS in my mid-twenties.  I was aware that besides the amenorrhea and being overweight (in my case) there was also the chance of infertility. When my husband and I were ready for kids I went off contraception (the ring) and had a huge disruption in my periods.

My doctor put me on progesterone and she mentioned that I probably wasn’t ovulating so she referred me to a fertility specialist. All my blood work and tests were fine, so after the fertility doctor talked about drugs, shots, artificial insemination and in-vitro fertilization, I was overwhelmed.  I asked to start with the least invasive method since everything seemed to be fine and started taking metformin.

Talking to a friend, she mentioned acupuncture and recommended The Nest. I called to set up an appointment and started my treatment in July 2011. The acupuncturist (Jennifer) said I had a lot of stagnation in that area and I was happily surprised that it only took a couple of months for me to start getting a regular period; and even happier when I tried an ovulation predictor kit in November and had a positive result.  I could ovulate.

I got pregnant in December and sadly lost that pregnancy around 4 weeks later. I continued with the treatment and without tracking my ovulation -since I was supposed to wait a month to try again- I got pregnant right away! Today I am on my eighth week and very glad I came to the Nest. I am grateful for their work and for giving me a natural option to achieve conception. I am still in treatment and feel great; I believe the benefits show in my overall health.

-Adriana

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