TCM Pregnancy, Childbirth and Postpartum Issues Treatment Theory

Women's TCM Physiology:

Pregnancy, the process of childbirth, and the postpartum period bring about a multitude of changes within a woman from both eastern and western perspectives. A complete understanding of the Traditional Chinese Medicine view of the physiological functions and interactions during pregnancy is an important aspect of forming an appropriate treatment plan for the many issues which may arise.

Within TCM there are four primary aspects of interaction related to pregnancy and childbirth:

The uterus is the primary structure responsible for the birthing process and accordingly is the focal point when looking for disruptions. The uterus is responsible for the nourishment of the fetus and is greatly dependent on having enough energy or "Qi" available for proper development. This energy is primarily drawn from the Kidney system which must be strong enough to sustain both the mother and the developing fetus.

Of equal importance to "Qi" is the "Blood" of the body. The "Blood" of TCM theory pertains to the smooth circulation of blood in the body along with the ability to hold and distribute nourishment. One of the primary deficiencies which may arise during pregnancy is that of blood defiency.

It is the liver (which stores the blood), heart (which controls the circulation of the blood), and the spleen (which assists in the creation of the blood) that are focused on in within TCM theory.

The eight Extraordinary Vessels are additional meridians which often connect multiple regular body meridians and points along the ev meridians often have broad functions within the body. Of particular importance to pregnancy are the Chong Mai (also known as the "sea of Blood") and the Ren Mai (also known as the "sea of Yin" or "conception vessel"). The Chong Mai as the "sea of Blood" has a strong relationship to the circulation and management of Blood within the body whereas the Ren Mai has a strong relationship to the circulation of yin energy within the body. The Yin of the body is of primary importance to the majority of physiology functions during pregnancy and is important to monitor and maintain.

 

Acupuncture contraindications for pregnancy

Acupuncture is extremely safe and very helpful for all stages of pregnancy. There are, however, points and techniques which are generally contraindicated and the list below serves as a helpful guide:

LI 4, SP 6, GB 21
UB 31 thru UB 34
CV 2 thru CV 7 (No Deep Needling during Pregancy and No Perpendicular Needling in the Advanced Stages) & CV 9 - CV 15 (No Perpendicular Needling in the Advanced Stages)


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