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Acupuncture Offers Breastfeeding Benefits

acupuncture breastfeeding mom baby

Acupuncture for Dads

Acupuncture offers many benefits for new dads, too, including:

Stress Relief

Adjusting to parenthood can be stressful for new parents. Acupuncture treatments help reduce stress and insomnia that can make busy days seem even more chaotic.

Increased Energy

Many people who receive acupuncture note an increase in energy and a decrease in fatigue. When you are trying to juggle the demands of work and your new job as dad, a boost in energy is always welcome.

Better Immune System Function

New parents do not have time to be sick, but viruses do not care about your responsibilities. Acupuncture offers an excellent way to bolster your immune system. It's a good choice when you develop cold symptoms, plus regular treatments help keep viruses at bay.

Pain Relief

Acupuncture treatment is a very effective method to treat back and neck pain, sprains, sciatica, arthritis, headaches, knee pain and other types of pain.

Improved Sexual Functioning

After the birth of a new baby, sex often falls to the bottom of your to do list, but when you are ready to enjoy some alone time with your partner, you will be glad you took advantage of acupuncture treatments. Acupuncture can improve libido, increase sperm count, and reduce impotence and premature ejaculation.

Breastfeeding offers an excellent way to feed your baby and boost his or her immune system, but it is not always easy. Problems ranging from insufficient milk supply to blocked milk ducts to irritated nipples often cause women to give up on this feeding method. Luckily, acupuncture offers a natural way to improve milk production and flow.

Getting Your Qi and Breast Milk Flowing

Acupuncture is based on the theory that blockages of Qi, an essential life force that travels through your body in a system of meridians, cause a variety of physical ailments, including back pain, headaches, high blood pressure and acne. Inserting thin needles into strategic areas of the body removes the blockages, allowing Qi to flow freely once again.

Your Qi can be disrupted if you had a difficult pregnancy or labor, gave birth to multiples, have not fully recovered from a previous pregnancy or experienced several miscarriages. Breastfeed problems can also occur if, like many new mothers, you are exhausted or feel overwhelmed by your new responsibilities.

How Acupuncture Treatment Helps

Acupuncture offers several important benefits for breastfeeding women. Treatments are used to:

  • Improve milk flow
  • Unblock clogged milk ducts
  • Reduce breast engorgement
  • Relieve inflammation and infection common with mastitis
  • Improve the condition of sore nipples
  • Reduce stress
  • Boost energy levels

An Effective, Proven Solution

Acupuncture offers proven breastfeeding benefits and has been the subject of numerous research studies. In one study, researchers reported that placing acupuncture needles in the center of the sternum was responsible for a significant improvement in milk supply. Acupuncture practitioners believe that the treatment triggers the release of prolactin, a hormone crucial for milk production and oxytocin, a hormone that helps move milk into the breast ducts. Northwestern University researchers reported that 70 percent of new mothers who participated in their study reported good or very good results in increasing milk production.

Although improving milk flow is an important benefit, acupuncture also offers other advantages for breastfeeding mothers. Women who participated in a Swedish study had a more rapid resolution of their engorgement symptoms after receiving acupuncture treatments. Participants in a Chinese study not only reported improved milk output, but also an improvement in breast swelling and tenderness.

More Than Just Needles

Although acupuncture treatment will be a crucial part of your therapy, your practitioner will also use a variety of treatments to make breastfeeding a more productive, enjoyable experience. Herbal medications that improve the quality and quantity of your breast milk can be an important part of your treatment. Your practitioner will also provide advice on food choices that will enhance breastfeeding. Warm foods that contain plenty of protein and nutrients offer the best way to support Qi. If you're breastfeeding, consider adding some of these foods to your diet:

  • Black beans
  • Red meat
  • Fish
  • Chicken
  • Bone broth
  • Ham-hock soup
  • Chicken soup
  • Garlic or ginger broth
  • Molasses
  • Beets

Would you like to learn more about the benefits of acupuncture for breastfeeding? Call us today to schedule an appointment.


Sources:

Drugs.com: Acupuncture Use While Breastfeeding, 07/07/16
https://www.drugs.com/breastfeeding/acupuncture.html

AcuTake Health: Breastfeeding Made Better with Acupuncture
http://acutakehealth.com/breastfeeding-made-better-with-acupuncture

Northwestern University:
https://www.scholars.northwestern.edu/en/publications/a-clinical-evaluation-of-the-effectiveness-of-acupuncture-for-ins

Victoria University: A Pilot Study to Evaluate the Effect of Acupuncture on Increasing Milk Supply of Lactating Mothers, 2003
http://vuir.vu.edu.au/241/

Acufinder: Can Acupuncture Enhance Sexual Desire and Pleasure?
https://www.acufinder.com/Acupuncture+Information/Detail/Can+acupuncture+enhance+sexual+desire+and+pleasure+

UC San Diego: How Acupuncture Can Relieve Pain and Improve Sleep, Digestion and Emotional Well-Being
http://cim.ucsd.edu/clinical-care/acupuncture.shtml\