By Ashley Gordon, FGHG acupuncturist
So your first 34 weeks of pregnancy has come and gone. For some this has been tumultuous and you’d rather not do it again, for others, it has been an enjoyable journey. But be prepared! In my experience working with many pregnant women, I can safely say that when trying to cope with the Summer heat, the coming 6 weeks of pregnancy may prove challenging, especially when embarking on the run to the finish line (not that you should be running!!).
Why is that I hear you asking?
During the latter stages of pregnancy, the human body has increased its blood volume by up to a whopping 50% (or just short of, according to this study). With more fluid comes considerably more heat! If you are 34 weeks and beyond you are carrying significantly more blood, metabolism is increased and so is blood flow to the skin, making you feel warmer and possibly sweat more too. Interestingly too, a pregnant woman’s basal body temperature is on average is 0.4 degrees higher than normal and while this doesn’t sound like much, most pregnant women will notice it!
From a Chinese Medical perspective, more blood means more Yang and Yang is the driving force behind growing a baby. So it has a wonderful purpose with its ability to speed up many important processes in the body but please hear me, while this is a great thing and undeniably important for your little one to grow, it may come at a cost to your comfort as the outside temperatures soar!
Some symptoms you might experience with excess heat include swelling, difficulty sleeping, skin tightness, excessive sweating and of course, just feeling really hot and bothered! So while there are many wonderful advantages to being pregnant and delivering your little one in the warmer months of the year (such as lovely days outside with copious fresh air), when the word “over-heated” is an understatement and the air-conditioner just isn’t helping… here are a few tips to make this time more tolerable…
 Clin Haematol. 1985 Oct;14(3):601-12.
Ashley Gordon, FGHG Acupuncturist
An experienced Acupuncturist and Chinese Herbalist, Ash has a special interest in treating women from pre-conception, throughout pregnancy and beyond birth for post-natal care.
Ash has seen incredible results using acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine for pregnant women experiencing common pregnancy symptoms such as nasuea, morning sickness, sleep issues, fatigue and heartburn as well as preparing the body for active and successful labour.