Common symptoms during mid-late stages of pregnancy can leave you feeling exhausted and uncomfortable. We see a variety of pregnancy presentations in clinic, and people seeking relief from pain, inflammation and swelling is high up on the list of common concerns. For those seeking drug-free pain relief, Acupuncture is a well-tolerated modality that may further assist in reducing any localised inflammation and oedema that could be aggravating your symptoms.
Three of the more common musculoskeletal presentations during later stage pregnancy include carpal tunnel syndrome, pubic symphysis pain & sciatica. The good news is that treatment for any of these concerns can be started immediately, without having to wait-it-out till after birth.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
Pain, numbness and oedema in hands occurs frequently in later stage pregnancy. Carpal Tunnel Syndrome causes numbness, tingling or burning due to the median nerve being restricted as it passes through the carpal tunnel, and that nerve irritation can lead to daily activities becoming difficult. Pain is often exacerbated with overuse as a result, & Acupuncture for carpal tunnel symptoms provides an option for local relief.
Pubic symphysis pain
Pain that presents around the pubic bone and may also radiate into the groin or lower back can be particularly noticeable after a day of walking around, or shifting from a seated to standing position. From 24-26 weeks onwards, the pubic symphysis joint starts to separate in birth preparation as the hormone relaxin rises, however in some women, this also leads to inflammation which results in pain. Research has shown that women who undergo acupuncture had a greater reduction in pain compared to those undergoing more conventional treatments such as physio, putting it in the mix as an effective treatment approach.
Acupuncture for Sciatica is becoming an increasingly popular option for women suffering from pain and discomfort. Thankfully, pregnancy related sciatica is usually both temporary and treatable. This is particularly reassuring when ibuprofen is no longer a go-to option.
Sciatica is a shooting, burning pain that typically radiates from the pelvis at the sacroiliac joint (SIJ) down either the back or side of the leg and may run all the way down to the feet. It occurs due to the sciatic nerve, which innervates the lower body, being compressed or irritated. During pregnancy there are a number of reasons why sciatica may be present; aside from the rapid change to the body as baby grows or changes position, sciatica can also result from weight changes, postural changes, or hormonal changes which can result in sciatic symptoms starting or being amplified, and impacting both your movement and sleep.
As with all treatments, frequency will vary based on your presentation and severity of symptoms. If you’re unsure whether it’ll be the right fit for you, book in for a discovery call to learn more!