As an experienced birth acupuncturist, or 'acudoula', I can support you through all or part of your birthing journey. Acupuncture helps you to manage the pain of birthing, keeps your energy going and your 'spirits' up, and can offer solutions at pivotal junctions as the labour unfolds.
Always with the approval and collaboration of the midwife, the acupuncturist helps to:
Acupuncture pain relief does not work like an epidural, which takes away all sensation. It is about building endorphins and helping you to ride the waves as they in, to allow them to grow longer and more powerful, and to submerge your consciousness into the deep, dream-like zone where labour gets to work.
I provide full labour assistance, where I attend your birth from early labour onward. I will be on standby ready to go for a 4 week period around your due dates, so my attendance is guaranteed. The package includes the booking consultation (which is a prospective meeting) and a postnatal session at home or in clinic. It is a very good idea to have prebirth acupuncture in the last four or five weeks of the 3rd trimester to prepare your body for labour. This is similar to the work of a 'doula' but by another name, and using acupuncture.
With "2x2" labour attendance we schedule at the onset of labour two 2-hour visits, at home and/or in hospital. The schedule is subject to my availability and flexible to suit your changing needs. It is good to know you have this support available in two places. If you do not use the second 2, they will translate into two acupuncture sessions at home or in clinic.
An emergency call-out is possible - it is worth making the call! This might be if you need help with pain management and 'getting into the zone', if baby's position is not optimal, or crucially if labour slows down or stops and you need to restart your contractions. Sometimes your contractions stop because your body knows you need a rest - you might all be able to rest for a while with a quiet heart, knowing that I am on my way. Within the ACCT Bristol team we have a number of known and trusted colleagues who might be available to to attend.
All my labour packages include a post-natal visit. I feel it is important to visit a mother after the birth: the early days of motherhood are crucial feet-finding days, and it can feel hectic.
There is so much emphasis placed on the birth, but the time that follows is the beginning, not the end of the story. It is it is good to nourish and nurture a new mother at this time, and perhaps to offer some help with latch and milkflow. And it is good for a new mother to know that my visit is in place, ready to go, so all she needs to do is answer the text and then answer the door!
Eleanor was present at the birth of each of my boys. Her calm nature and instinct to know exactly what I needed were so reassuring and comforting. We were by ourselves in my home during the birth of my second son. She rubbed oil, placed needles, talked with a soothing voice and reassured me that all was going well. The midwife arrived to deliver the baby, but the rest we did. She could not be present at the birth of son no. 3 as I gave birth in Berlin, but she called me and talked me through heavy contractions. Soon after her telephone guidance my son was born. I can recommend Eleanor as an intuitive person. She is present and knows what is right during the birthing process.
I had acupuncture administered by Eleanor at my home and in hospital during labour. Her support, advice and placing of "whiskers" (needles sound painful) throughout the birth were amazing. Eleanor acted as my negotiator with the midwife to keep me in the 'home from home' suite where I felt most comfortable. After about 26hrs of labouring I got very tired, and everything slowed down, but the acupuncture got it going again and then I didn't have long to go. I wholeheartedly endorse Eleanor, and would recommend her unreservedly.