Morning sickness usually occurs in the first trimester, however some woman can be ‘lucky’ enough to experience this throughout their pregnancy. There are many theories as to why a woman might experience morning sickness, including the adjustment required within the body to deal with rapidly increasing hormones, the existence of fatigue and high stress prior to conception, and emotional factors surrounding pregnancy.
Traditional Chinese Medicine views morning sickness as an imbalance of Qi and Blood within the Chong Mai or Penetrating Vessel. The Chong Mai is closely tied to the Stomach meridian, as it flows up the centre of the body, through the Uterus and Stomach, even traversing a section of the pathway of the Stomach meridian. One of the Chong Mai’s usual roles is to store and then send Blood to the Uterus for menstruation, but during pregnancy, Qi, Blood and Essence is directed continuously to the Uterus to nourish the fetus. Due to this demand, Qi and Blood can become relatively deficient in the Chong Mai leading to ‘rebellious Qi’ in the vessel. This rebellious Qi causes the Stomach Qi to rise upwards (as opposed to its usual descending action) creating nausea and vomiting. Treatment of morning sickness with Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine therefore aims to harmonise the Chong Mai, descend Stomach Qi and address any underlying imbalances. Scientific research has shown treatment of morning sickness with Acupuncture to be very effective.