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Moxibustion involves the focused application of warmth on the body by burning natural compressed mugwort leaf (Folium Artemisiae Argyi). Moxibustion is commonly given in two ways: by lighting moxa sticks, and using the heat to warm acupuncture points, or by lighting moxa cones that are placed onto the skin directly onto acupuncture points.


The warmth and energetic properties of the mugwort leaf is used to improve circulation, warm and relax tense muscles, relieve pain and promote relaxation and wellbeing.

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What can moxibustion be used for?

Moxibustion is often recommend for a number of symptoms and most frequently for the following:


  • Breech presentation during pregnancy


  • Menstrual issues such as period pain, irregular periods and ovulatory disorders, commonly linked with endometriosis and polycystic ovary syndrome 


  • Painful conditions such as fibromyalgia, neuralgia


  • Muscular tension and sports injuries


  • Digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome





Moxibustion for Breech babies

Moxibustion is often recommended for Breech presentation during pregnancy.

Moxibustion (a treatment method of traditional Chinese medicine) involves the burning of a herb (artemisia vulgaris) close to the skin to induce a warming sensation (Turner 1991). Moxibustion close to the acupuncture point Bladder 67 (BL67—Chinese name Zhiyin), located at the tip of your fifth toe, may correct breech presentation. Women with a breech presentation may seek treatment with moxibustion from 32–38 weeks. Published evidence suggests that moxibustion is effective in reducing the need for an external cephalic version (ECV). 

This technique involves holding moxa sticks (1.5cm in diameter and 20cm in length) or burning moxa cones on or over BL67 on both toes. The heat felt should be warm but not uncomfortable. It can be described as like a mosquito bite sensation. Treatment regimens vary and there is no consensus on the best regimen, but moxibustion may be administered for 15–20 minutes daily sometimes 3-5 times a day, for up to 10 days. There have been no reported side-effects for mothers or babies. 

After trying moxibustion for 7-10 days you will be reviewed again either in the breech clinic or the day assessment unit at 36 weeks and the midwife will check the position of your baby. If your baby is still breech and you opt for an ECV, you will be shown a short video and an ECV appointment will be arranged for you.

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