Acupuncture is a safe and effective method to support women in pregnancy who experience a range of symptoms, including:

• prevention of miscarriage
• nausea and/or vomiting
• poor appetite, food aversions and cravings, bitter taste
• thirst
• heartburn, indigestion, digestive disorder
• haemorrhoids, constipation
• tiredness, lethargy, fatigue, exhaustion
• anaemia
• dizziness, fainting
• high or low blood pressure
• mood swings, depression, anxiety
• insomnia
• rashes, itching,
• tinnitus
• oedema; swollen feet, legs, fingers
• aches and pains
• headache, migraine
• back ache, sciatica
• neck and shoulder pain
• rib pain
• carpal tunnel syndrome
• pelvic girdle pain / SPD
• leg cramps
• restless legs
• varicose veins
• night sweats
• urinary complaints, urinary tract infection
• pelvic inflammatory disease
• thrush
• small for date babies
• posterior position
• pre-birth acupuncture
• breech presentation
• labour induction
• pain relief during labour
• acupressure during labour
• postnatal care

Pregnancy Acupuncture Programme

We offer specialist services in pregnancy acupuncture during all stages of pregnancy. Our obstetrics acupuncturist, Anita Kaur Manik has a postgraduate certificate in obstetric acupuncture, issued in conjunction with the Royal College of Midwives. We accept referrals from independent midwives and hospital maternity. We offer pregnancy acupuncture for morning sickness, breech babies, pelvic and back pain, and our pre-birth acupuncture is extremely popular. We offer pregnancy acupuncture for labour induction, and postnatally for hormonal re-balancing, caesarean-section healing, lactation problems and baby blues/postnatal depression.

The First Trimester: (0-12 weeks)

We recommend weekly pregnancy acupuncture during the first trimester. During this stage, there is an increased risk of miscarriage and an even higher risk with IVF pregnancies or where there has been recurrent miscarriage.

The Second Trimester: (13-28 weeks)
We recommend monthly pregnancy acupuncture during this stage depending on the symptoms associated with your pregnancy.

The Third Trimester: (29-36 weeks)
We recommend monthly pregnancy acupuncture during this stage depending on the symptoms associated with your pregnancy.
The Third Trimester: Pre-Birth Acupuncture (week 36-40)
We recommend Pre-Birth Acupuncture in the final four weeks of pregnancy from week 36 to week 40 to prepare for childbirth. We receive referrals for this programme from medics, and midwives.

Pre-Birth Acupuncture

What is Pre-Birth Acupuncture?

The Bexley Acupuncture Clinic recommends Pre-Birth Acupuncture from week 36 onwards in the final 4 weeks of pregnancy to prepare women's body's for childbirth.

Weekly acupuncture treatments from week 36 to week 40 promote a healthy and natural birth, with emphasis on preparing the cervix and pelvis for labour.

The acupuncture points used boost energy, aid relaxation and nourish the blood in the body, soften the ligaments and tendons prior to labour, and aid in cervical dilation.

Benefits of Pre-Birth Acupuncture?

Feedback from midwives about pre-birth acupuncture is that acupuncture has:

• reduced the length of time women spent in labour
• reduced the number of women requiring medical intervention (medical induction, epidural and caesarian section)
• increased normal vaginal deliveries

Pre-Birth Acupuncture Research

Research from New Zealand showed that pregnant women who receive pre-birth treatment, either go into spontaneous labour around their due dates, or if induction is required they respond well to acupuncture induction and move efficiently into a natural labour.

Research has demonstrated that the duration of labour in a group of 140 women giving birth for the first time was reduced from 8 hours and 2 minutes in the control group to 6 hours and 36 minutes in the group that received pre-birth acupuncture on a weekly basis from week 36 until the due date.

Betts D, Lennox S. "Acupuncture for prebirth treatment: An observational study of its use in midwifery practice." Medical acupuncture 2006 May; 17(3):17-20

This is also a good time for a woman to try and rest and regulating physical activity, and trying to maintain emotional balance so she can enter birth in the best possible energetic state.

Acupuncture and Breech Presentation

The turning of breech babies using moxibustion from week 34 onwards is a successful and natural method to avoid medical intervention.

The success rates are as high as 81% in turning a breech baby.

Even women with a very late diagnosis of breech presentation have found that their babies have turned with the use of moxibustion and/or acupuncture.

Moxibustion involves burning a fragrant herb in the form of a moxa stick over one acupuncture point on the feet to relax the muscles in the uterus allowing the baby to turn.

It is extremely safe and relaxing and the great benefit of this treatment is that you can continue the treatment with your partner or friend in the comfort of your own home once we have taught you the technique and frequency of treatment.

Labour Induction

Acupuncture treatment followed by self-administered acupressure is the most practical and effective method of inducing labour. We would recommend a woman to come in 3 days before a medical induction is planned. We will use acupuncture treatment daily for 3 consecutive days prior to a planned medical induction, or as a one-off treatment if an induction is urgently required, to induce labour. Feedback from midwives suggest that being able to induce women with acupuncture reduces the intervention of using syntocinon, epidurals or caesarean sections.

Labour with Acupressure

One way of supporting the mother in labour is teaching her and her birth partner the acupressure points to use during labour. It is easy for the birth partner to learn how to find and stimulate the key points for labour.
This is helpful for the mother and also for the birth partner as it creates a feeling of usefulness, validation and involvement with the labour. Some couples have reported it a very bonding experience.

Acupressure can:

• help stimulate endorphins,
• help block pain receptors to the brain,
• help dilate the cervix
• help increase the efficiency of contractions
• help with sickness and anxiety.

Acupressure is normally taught at around 36 weeks.

Post-Natal Care

Acupuncture plays an important role in the post-natal period to aid recovery. It is beneficial to have acupuncture treatment in the immediate days after childbirth. We recommend a couple of acupuncture treatments post birth, the first being 3-5 days after childbirth. The demands of labour are significant, and acupuncture can help restore the body’s reserves of energy. This treatment is extremely gentle and supportive and helps to restore a hormonal balance.

We offer a 'Mother Warming' treatment which involves the use of a moxa stick to warm the lower abdomen. It is soothing and therapeutic and wonderful post c-section as it aids recovery.
We strongly advocate that there be a full 40 days (6 weeks) of time to recover from childbirth. In Chinese Medicine, rest is considered the most vital nourishment to replenish the mother’s energy and to give her and her newborn the necessary time to bond.

Acupuncture treatment during these weeks can help with:

• restoring balance
• encouraging the uterus to contract
• minimizing after pains
• easing perineal discomfort
• balancing the hormone surges as the milk comes in
• ‘baby blues’ or post-natal depression
• breast feeding problems and mastitis
• post-partum bleeding
• regulating temperature swings, especially night sweats
• promoting healing of caesarean scar tissue, and any complications


I've been seeing Anita for acupuncture since March 2015 where she initially helped with fertility issues. By September 2015, I was pregnant and saw her throughout my pregnancy. Since having my baby, I have seen her multiple times for various issues including SPD and back pain, always with excellent results.

I love the holistic way Anita treats her patients, always treating the root cause and not just the symptoms. I always feel significantly better after a treatment; less stressed, calmer, better sleep and with more energy. I thoroughly recommend acupuncture and Anita to anyone.