Hannah Philips has just given birth to triplets – and believes Shiatsu may have helped her and her partner Paul Miller with the conception, as well as alleviating her morning sickness.
Hannah, who’s 38, and lives in Devon conceived Woody, Mavie and Ettia just three days after both she and Paul had Shiatsu treatments, and they feel that Shiatsu had a positive influence in enabling her to become pregnant.
The pair were treated by Bristol based pregnancy and childbirth shiatsu expert Suzanne Yates who has devoted the past 20 years of her life to helping women before, during and after pregnancy as well as throughout the menopause.
Suzanne has written a couple of books on Shiatsu and childbirth - one for parents to be - Beautiful Birth - and one for midwives and travels the world lecturing on and teaching the Japanese healing art.
Paul explained: “We had IUI (intrauterine insemination) treatment which involves ovarian stimulation and insemination, five times. We got pregnant on the third attempt although miscarried and were successful with our triplets on the fifth go.
“After our fourth attempt we decided we wanted some extra help with conception and heard about how shiatsu has helped many women with their fertility so we decided it was worth giving it a try. We were both treated just three days before we conceived so it certainly seems to have lived up to its promise there.”
Hannah, herself a twin, was prepared to be carrying twins herself so wasn’t surprised when she was told she was expecting two babies – although admits when, a few weeks later, she was informed there were actually three it was initially something of a shock.
Hannah continued to have Shiatsu treatments throughout her pregnancy to relieve morning sickness, aid relaxation and make her feel closer to the three babies.
“Personally I do feel that the shiatsu along with diet and positive attitude. I’m sure the deep relaxation on many levels provided by the Shiatsu really helped with the babies healthy development. Woody was 5lb 5 oz, Mavie 4lb14oz and Ettia 4lb 11oz - all very good weights for 34.5 weeks. People in the neo natal unit were very impressed. They all moved to low dependency in neo natal after two days and didn’t require antibiotics.
“So my feeling is that conception is such a mysterious process that it’s hard to say one factor did it. We did many things - taking supplements, having a healthy diet, drinking lots of water, avoiding alcohol and sugars, eating organic food, using meditation as well as Shiatsu. So I think it is the holistic approach that worked and Shiatsu is very much part of that. During pregnancy I feel shiatsu had a very positive effect on Hannah’s state of mind, body and the babies’ growth and development.”
Suzanne added: “Women and midwives using Shiatsu, which is like acupuncture without the needles, say it can alleviate many of the chronic symptoms of pregnancy such as backache, insomnia and morning sickness. They say it can also help during labour and birth, as well as relieve postnatal problems such as heavy postpartum bleeding or difficulties with lactation. A Shiatsu treatment simply encourages the body to balance its own natural energy by gentle stimulation of its energy pathways, the meridians - the same pathways used in acupuncture. The age-old midwifery skills of touching and stroking are an intrinsic part of nurturing and cherishing - the essence of 'being with woman'.”
The image above shows Triplets Mavie, Ettia and Woody who were conceived after their parents received Shiatsu treatments