Complementary therapies in pregnancy: a means to reduce ill health and improve well-being?

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Recently, the Journal of Infant Psychology published a consensus statement detailing research objectives relating to measurement of well-being and psychological health in pregnancy (Alderdice et al., 2013). It was agreed among the authors that a paradigm shift is needed, with the emphasis of perinatal research not being purely to assess and treat negative symptomatology, but also to examine how we can improve the experience of pregnancy for all women. The use of complementary medicine requires a similar shift. From a funding body’s perspective, it may be difficult to justify expenditure on intervention studies aimed to promote well-being if they are unlikely to have a demonstrative impact on any adverse health outcome. Numerous psychosocial therapies have been developed to target and change maladaptive attitudes and cognitions; however, these may not apply to pregnant women considered ‘healthy’ where such thoughts are mostly absent. Complementary and alternative medications (CAMs) may provide an attractive solution as they may help to reduce ‘ill health’, and evidence highlights their beneficial value in low-risk pregnant women (Marc et al., 2011).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)211-213
Number of pages3
JournalJournal of Reproductive and Infant Psychology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 27 May 2014
Externally publishedYes


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