In the weeks following childbirth, the majority of time is of course for mother and baby bonding. However it’s also a time for mothers to regain their strength following pregnancy and giving birth. Proper care during this period is essential as new mothers can be at increased risk of prolonged depression, exhaustion and poor milk supply.
The ancient Chinese emphasised that new mothers should stay at home and be attended only by family in order to be able to rebuild their energy and stamina. Today, we’re expected to ‘get back on our feet’ as soon as possible, but we often do this without any or little support – a situation which can leave some women feeling suddenly exhausted and overwhelmed (both physically and emotionally). With these pressures, it’s no surprise that some women are affected by postnatal depression.
If you think that you may have postnatal depression, it is very important to contact your midwife or GP for the right treatment and support.
Indications of postnatal depression include:
- lack of appetite
- persistent feelings of hopelessness and/or helplessness
- suicidal thoughts or urges
- violent or aggressive feelings towards your baby
In contrast, Acupuncture theory emphasises the importance of rebuilding energy and stamina and taking time to recover from pregnancy and childbirth. In addition to needles, postnatal treatments, also known as ‘mother warming’, commonly involve the smouldering of the herb ‘Moxa’ (artemisia vulgaris latiflora), which is believed to be very nourishing to the mother, particularly around the abdominal area. The use of Moxa can be taught to friends or family, so that the treatment can be continued at home.
Acupuncture treatments, in addition to any medical care and support that you choose to have at this time, can be very helpful to successfully:
- restore strength and energy following childbirth
- ease postnatal depression and anxiety
- balance your hormones
- address breastfeeding problems
- encourage the uterus to contract to pre-pregnancy size
- ease perineal discomfort
- shrink haemorrhoids
- help with bleeding complications
- regulate temperature and excessive sweating
- aid healing of Caesarian scars
- relieve backache
- relieve mastitis
- relieve constipation
You are more than welcome to bring your baby to the clinic while you are having the treatment at this time. Appointments (which are recommended from 5 days after birth) can be arranged around your child’s feeding schedule. We can also discuss home visits until you feel ready and strong enough to come in to the clinic.
Please contact me here or phone me on 07739188652 for more information or any questions you may have.