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Using Acupressure to Induce Labor

written by: TheresaHalvorsen • edited by: Lisa Lambson • updated: 9/16/2009

Acupressure is an ancient technique used to improve health. Recently, practitioners have used acupressure to induce labor. Learn more about acupressure point locations and the names of the points you can use to get your labor started.

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    Finding Acupressure Points

    Acupressure points are actually very small and can be difficult to locate. You'll know you've found an accupressure point if when you press on it, the area seems a little more sensitive. Acupressure points are in slightly different points in everyone. So when practitioners say find the point 2 finger lengths above a bone, they mean use the fingers of the person getting the acupressure, not the practitioners fingers.

    Acupressure does take time to work. Once you find the point, you'll have to hold it for 10 to 15 seconds and then take a few second break before applying pressure again. If contractions start or become intense, stop doing the acupressure.

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    Acupressure Point Locations

    There are many points that can start labor. These points are called Sp 6, LI 4 and BL 67

    Sp 6

    To find sp 6 first find the ankle bone. Then go 4 fingerlengths above the bone. It's not actually on the shin bone, but towards the rear of the leg. Press on that point, using your thumb.

    LI 4

    To find LI 4, hold your palm downward and stretch out your fingers. In the webbing between the index finger and the thumb is point LI 4. Take your other hand and press on that point by pinching it between your index finger and thumb. Press toward the index finger of the hand you're doing acupressure on.

    BL 67

    BL 67 is in the foot by the pinkie toe. This point can be hard to locate, but it's right next to the toenail on the outside of the foot

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    Inducing Labor Precautions

    If you're tired of being pregnant, the idea of getting your baby out sooner rather than later sounds fantastic. However, while using acupressure to induce labor does work, it's important that you wait until your baby is full term and that's no earlier than 37 weeks. It's also very important that you check in with your care provider before you try to get your labor started--they may want you wait a for a few days due to medical reasons.

    Never press on these acupressure points during pregnancy.

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    References

    Forem, Jack. Healing with Pressure Point Therapy: Simple Effective Techniques for Massaging Away More than 100 Annoying Ailments. Prentice Hall, 1999.

    Simkin, Penny. The Birth Partner. Harvard Common Press,

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    Disclaimer

    The information in this article should not be considered medical advice. The information in this article is not meant to treat, diagnose, prescribe or cure any ailment. Always check with your physician before taking any products or following any advice you have read on Brighthub.com. Always consult your doctor before you start, stop or change anything that has been previously prescribed. Certain herbs and holistic remedies are unsuitable to take if you are pregnant or nursing and must always be cleared by your doctor before use.

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