Debra Betts has a super informative website covering a range of uses for Acupuncture during pregnancy and birth. You will also find the Acupressure booklet available for download. These are the points referred to on the testimonials below.
“I first went to visit when I was 36 weeks pregnant. It was my second child and the pregnancy had been quite difficult. I had sailed through the first pregnancy and really enjoyed it but the second time around I had struggled with tiredness, joint pains and gestational diabetes. The diabetes had meant that I was under the high risk team at Auckland Hospital and that there was a significant of medical intervention and appointments I attended, at 36 weeks I was injecting insulin and to manage my blood sugars. I had none of the risk factors for Gestational diabetes and so had found the diagnosis difficult to manage along with looking after a toddler. So…. I visited Lisa as my baby was breach and the High Risk team wanted to perform a C section if she became any bigger. I really wanted a natural birth and felt disappointed and frightened at the prospect of surgery. Before I even hopped on the table Lisa stopped and asked me how I was feeling about the pregnancy….. by this time I was so nervous I sorted blurted out all my worries and fears about the pregnancy and how I was not really open to the possibility of a C section and that I just wanted Lisa to work miracles. What was really important was that she allowed me to see what my options were and to clarify what might be within my control and what wasn’t. Pregnancy is a time when there are so many changes to your body, and second time round I thought I knew it all. Each time is different, each child and experience is different and wanting it to be a particular way doesn’t change the facts…. in my case wanting not to be high risk, not to have gestational diabetes and not to have a breach baby weren’t going to change just because I didn’t want them. Lisa allowed me to arrive at this conclusion, gently and compassionately and then we got to work with the acupuncture. Her astute insight, gentle ability and astounding knowledge of Eastern medicine not only allowed for me to be open, relaxed and prepared for the birth ahead rather than tight and rigid. She has amazing insight into the emotion of “fear” and the difficulties it causes us as human beings. Lisa and I worked together again to attempt to induce the birth and although I ended up being medically induced it was a smooth natural birth because I felt confident, open and relaxed, knowing that whatever happened it was not within my control and the safety of my child and myself were paramount rather than an idea of how the birth “SHOULD” go. As an acupuncturist Lisa is one of the best that I have visited not only with her knowledge but insights, instinct and perceptiveness about health and emotional wellbeing.”
“I began seeing acupuncturist Lisa Houghton six weeks before the due date of my second pregnancy. My first pregnancy had resulted in an emergency caesarian, something I was anxious to avoid if possible.
Lisa is a careful and sensitive acupuncturist, with a considered and thorough approach. I enjoyed each session with her immensely. I am indebted to her for introducing me to the work of Debra Betts, www.acupuncture.rhizome.net.nz, whose acupressure techniques can provide pain relief during labour. Lisa took the time to show my husband the correct points and technique, with excellent results.
I strenuously recommend her.”
“I first saw Lisa when I was 40 weeks pregnant. I had never tried acupuncture before and had a fear of needles but with an induction looking likely, I was prepared to try anything to start labour naturally. I found Lisa to be calming, reassuring and holistic in her approach. The needles didn’t hurt and best of all, I could feel them stimulating the various points all working to try to bring the baby down into my pelvis and stimulate my cervix to open. A few days passed and at 41 weeks my midwife booked me in to be induced in a few days time. Feeling desperate and anxious I saw Lisa again. Worrying that I’d be too tired to have the natural labour I had wanted I called Lisa to see if she would do a home visit to try and get me into established labour. An hour or two later Lisa visited me at home which I was very grateful for. Throughout I appreciated Lisa’s gentle manner, positive words and brilliant skills as an acupuncturist and I thank her.”
“Just wanted to touch base and say thank you – again! I had the sweep on Wednesday morning then was with a friend all afternoon and went into labour that night! So little (or not so little at 9 lb 4 oz) Archie Alexander arrived at 1.38am on his due date 28 Feb, only slightly more punctual than his brother who was one day late! All happened rather quickly so no time for any drugs (besides gas), quite different to last time – only 8 mins of pushing, there was no keeping him in!
I will definitely be in touch next time, or sooner if my back is sore with this feeding and cuddling too!”
KN Age 32
“At 36 weeks pregnant, my midwife recommended acupuncture as my baby was in the breech position. I was a bit hesitant as I had only had acupucture once 15 years previously for persistant headaches and found it to be scary and unpleasant. Lisa took my history, put me totally at ease, and performed the acupunture treatment. I was totally comfortable throughout. Lisa also prescribed moxibustion to be done at home over the following 5 days. Thank you Lisa!
I also wanted to let you know that after the second treatment you performed at 39 weeks for labour preparation, your prediction of a week to 10 days as to when the baby would be born was spot on. He arrived only two days late, within the time frame you guessed. The other thing I was thrilled about was the acupressure points you taught me – I kept reapplying the vivid marks over the following week or so and when I did go into labour, my husband used the points and I got amazing natural pain relief. So much so, I managed to hang on at home through transition and our second child was born with no drugs just over an hour after we got to hospital!”
“Just thought I would let you know I had no pain relief just gas. It all happened really really quick. Thank you very very much.”
AM Age 34
“Tell you what, those back spots made all the difference! Middle points were great until half way, then the tops ones rocked till he was out. Thank you so much”
“I saw Lisa for acupuncture from about 32 weeks in my second pregnancy. After a difficult birth experience and post-natal period with my first child I was full of anxiety and highly dedicated to work towards a better experience this time. I found having the acupuncture truly wonderful and I believe it helped in many ways. Firstly, the appointments were very therapeutic. The environment was calm and wonderful and it was always great to talk with Lisa about how things were going, how I was feeling physically and emotionally and where I was at. So it was a lovely interlude in my week! I found the acupuncture to be really helpful in my last weeks of pregnancy, it most importantly contributed to coming to a very beautiful place before my childbirth journey. Even as I approached two weeks overdue I felt quite at peace with what I was doing and that was no mean feat!
As my labour progressed the preparation became apparent – I felt very much on top of what was happening most of the time. I never felt anxious. The labour, although it stopped and started a little, was ultimately pretty efficient and I had my lovely boy without reaching overload or exhaustion. During the labour the acupressure points I had practiced with Lisa, and the pressure pins in my ears were fabulous. During the first night of contractions, which was around 12 hours of contractions a bit less than a minute long but only a minute apart my husband put pressure on the points around my sacrum. This worked well to help me through the night. When my labour picked up again with more intensity, although less frequent contractions, I started to use the point on my hand in between my thumb and first finger. Especially on my left hand but I used both as the night wore on. This point was a crucial part of my coping strategy. With each contraction building I would put pressure on the point, rock or sway, hum (okay, moan and groan!) and, as things became more intense, use visualisation. Before long my hands were humming, the points were sore! And they remained tender for a couple of days. But I could put so much pressure on them and they gave such good intense response – it was great. Along with a birth pool, my husband pouring water over my back, a fabulous midwife and a couple of great support people, this was all that I needed to help me through the labour and birth my little (well actually, 9lb 14 oz) boy.
One of the most lovely things about using acupuncture was that I felt so well resourced to tackle each coming hurdle. I felt that I had some tricks in the bag to employ as I came overdue, when the labour stopped and started etc. so that I had options I could take before having to go down the road of more intrusive interventions. Because of my previous experience I was really keen to avoid medical interventions and hospital altogether so it meant a lot to me. I think more than anything it meant a lot to know that I had the support of a wonderful group of people and professionals, who were all committed to helping me do this well – Lisa was a great part of my team!”
JS Age 34