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Home > Acupressure and pregnancy
Acupressure and pregnancy
Acupressure for inducing..
Acupressure and pregnancyIn traditional Chinese medicine terms they mean to prompt the body to work more efficiently. From a medical model, they can be viewed as promoting the release of endorphins, blocking the pain receptors to the brain, dilating the cervix, and increasing the efficiency of the contractions. As these points are easy to use, empower women during labor, and encourage close partner involvement. These points appear to be of greater benefit if commenced at the onset of labor, rather than waiting until there is strong pain. As women report not only a reduction in the level of their pain but also they cope well, feel calm and relaxed.

Acupressure and pregnancyYou can use any of these points at any time during labor. This is a tool that can be used in conjunction with any other therapies you would like to try. Acupressure, however, can be used safely throughout pregnancy to relieve many discomforts and painful conditions. You can go to a specialist to get acupressure treatment done, or you can learn and apply it to yourself. It is also a great technique for fathers-to-be to learn, because it is a proactive way to get involved in the pregnancy and labor to give special relief for loved ones.

Some helpful points
Gb 21
Point location- when you draw an imaginary curved line between the bony prominence of the neck (c7), and the top of the shoulder joint (the acrimony process) the point lies midway along this curved line, at the highest point of the shoulder muscle. It will feel tender with a numbing, buzzing or warming sensation (this sensation varies with individuals). The sensation is stronger on this point than any other points along this line. You can find this point on yourself by bringing your hand diagonally across your chest and palpating with your index finger along this "imaginary line".

This point will always be on this line with "c7". C7 is usually the first prominent bone you see on the back of the neck, when you tilt the face towards the ground. If there appear to be two prominent bones, place a finger on each bone and ask your partner to slowly turn their head from side to side. C7 will move slightly as the head is turned. This point has a descending action to aid the first and second stages of labor, and can stimulate uterine contractions. This is an excellent point to use when breast-feeding, it relaxes the shoulder and promotes milk supply. It is forbidden to use during pregnancy.

Bl 32
Point location - T=his point lies midway between the dimples above the buttocks and the spine. (note - bl 32 is not the dimple!). If you cannot see the dimples clearly, it is approximately one of the woman`s index finger lengths above the top of the buttock crease, one thumb width either side of the spine. When you place your finger on bl 32 you can feel the small depression of the sacral foramen where the point lies.

As labor begins you can start here and as the labor progresses move down the spine (approximately one thumb width at a time, moving slightly closer to the spine until as you arrive at the top of the buttock crease, your knuckles will be touching). The timing of this movement downwards will depend on the woman who will usually instinctually tell the support person to move lower as the baby moves during the labor.

The support person places their knuckles into the points and applies firm pressure. This can be increased by the woman rocking backwards into the support person at the beginning of a contraction, obtaining maximum pressure.

Buttock point
Point location - this point is in a direct horizontal line from the top of the buttock crease. If you press along this line there will be a tender point approximately two thirds of the distance between the buttock crease and the hipbone.

Hand points location
These points lie along the creases of the hands where the fingers join the palm. These are said to help release endorphins (the body`s natural painkillers) into the body. Hold a small comb so that the teeth are touching the points. You can then grip the comb during contractions, applying the pressure that you feel is useful. Some women find these points very helpful, to others they are merely a distraction!

K1
Point location - this point lies in the depression found on the top one third of the sole of the foot, when the foot is in planter flexion (pulling the toes towards the sole of the foot). Place strong pressure in this depression pushing inwards and upwards towards the big toe. This point has a useful relaxing effect and can be used at any time during labor. It has been noted as being especially effective during the second stage of labor. Also useful during labour where there are feelings of panic. This is also a useful point to use to help the perineum relax during second stage.

Co 4
Point location - this point is found between the first and second metacarpal bones (thumb and first finger) at the distal end of the crease on both hands. This has the effect of intensifying contractions, useful if contractions are of irregular intensity. This point can be used during the second stage of labour. It aids the body`s efforts to move the baby down through the birth canal. It may be especially useful if the woman is tired and not pushing effectively. This point is forbidden to use during pregnancy.

Sp 6
Point location - This point is located using four of the woman`s finger widths above the tip of the medial malleous, (the shin bones on the inside of the ankle). The point will be very tender and is found when you slide your finger off the edge of the tibia bone, towards the inside of the leg. It is useful on initially locating this point to press on the tibia; it produces a very different sensation from the point. This is an important point to help the cervix dilate, and can be used when the cervix is not effectively dilating during labour. Direct pressure is applied with the index finger or thumb. Use this point on one leg at a time for approximately one-minute then use it on the opposite leg 20 - 30 minutes later. This point will be very tender and after using it some women will feel their cervix stretching and contractions strengthening. This point is forbidden to use during pregnancy.

Cervical lip
This is when, although the woman wants to push, the cervix has not dilated enough. She will be told not to push by her midwife or doctor. If this becomes a problem during labour, apply strong pressure with your knuckles to bl 32.

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