Understanding Diastasis Recti: What You Need to Know
Welcome to the world of motherhood! As a new mom, you are experiencing a whirlwind of emotions and changes in your body. While some changes are expected, others may catch you by surprise. One such change that many women experience after pregnancy is diastasis recti.
What is Diastasis Recti?
Diastasis recti, also known as abdominal separation, is a condition where the two large parallel bands of muscles in your abdomen (rectus abdominis) separate during or after pregnancy. This occurs due to the stretching and thinning of the connective tissue between these muscles called the linea alba. This results in a gap or separation between your abdominal muscles.
What Causes Diastasis Recti?
During pregnancy, your growing uterus puts a lot of pressure on your abdominal muscles, causing them to stretch and separate. This is necessary for accommodating the growth of your baby. Other factors that can contribute to diastasis recti include multiple pregnancies, carrying a large baby, excessive weight gain during pregnancy, and poor posture or movements during day-to-day activities.
How Do You Know If You Have Diastasis Recti?
If you notice a bulge or ridge in the midline of your abdomen when you are lying down or performing certain activities like sitting up from a lying-down position, you may have diastasis recti. Some women also experience lower back pain, constipation, and difficulty in engaging their core muscles after pregnancy, which are also signs of diastasis recti.
How Can Physical Therapy Help?
Physical therapy can play a crucial role in treating diastasis recti and getting your body back to its pre-pregnancy state. A physical therapist will assess the severity of your condition and create an individualized treatment plan for you. This may include exercises to strengthen your deep abdominal muscles, pelvic floor muscles, and improve posture to help close the gap between your abdominal muscles.
The key is to start slow and gradually progress into more challenging exercises as your body heals. Your physical therapist will also guide you on proper breathing techniques while exercising, which can help activate your abdominal muscles correctly.
Other Tips for Managing Diastasis Recti
In addition to physical therapy, there are other things you can do to manage diastasis recti and promote healing. These include:
- Avoiding activities that put too much strain on your abdominal muscles, such as crunches or sit-ups.
- Using proper body mechanics when lifting objects or performing daily tasks.
- Wearing a support belt during activities that require more exertion.
- Engaging in low-impact exercises like swimming or walking.
Remember, it is essential to listen to your body and not push yourself too hard. If you experience pain or discomfort while doing any activity, stop and consult with your doctor or physical therapist.
Diastasis recti is a common condition that many women face after pregnancy. But with the help of physical therapy and other management techniques, it is possible to heal and regain function in your abdominal muscles.
Remember that everyone’s body is different, and healing may take longer for some individuals. Be patient with yourself and trust the process. With dedication and determination, you can overcome diastasis recti and feel confident in your postpartum body once again. And always remember to consult with a healthcare professional if you have any concerns or questions about your condition. Your journey towards healing starts now! So don’t wait any longer, take the first step towards treating diastasis recti today. Keep moving forward, mama!
Happy healing! 💪🏼💕