Diastasis Recti
Having a baby brings a lot of physical changes. You may notice one of these changes in your belly area. Some mothers may find that they may still have a bulge in their tummy even after giving birth. Some people call this the post-baby belly. The official name for it is diastasis recti, which is a normal change for about 60% of mothers. Although the main caveat with diastasis recti is cosmetic, it can bring some bothersome complications. There are natural ways to do so if you want to know how to fix diastasis recti.

How It Happens

Before diving in on how to fix diastasis recti, you may want to know how it happens in the first place. After all, you can only fix something when you know the underlying problem. During pregnancy, your abdominal area expands to make room for the growing baby. To do this, your abdominal muscles and connective tissues become thinner, wider, and more elastic. Your pregnant body also produces more of the hormones relaxin and estrogen to help with this expansion.

The After Effects

After giving birth, your abdominal muscles and connective tissues should return to their normal pre-pregnancy positions and shape. However, you cannot expect your belly to shrink instantly after having your baby. During those nine months of pregnancy, your belly gradually grew. It will also need more time to return to normal gradually. During that time, you have to be more careful. Although pregnancy can be a wonderful experience, it is also a physically stressful one.

Organs such as the brain have the skull for protection while the heart and lungs have the ribs. Organs in the belly area, however, only have the abdominal muscles for protection. When these muscles and tissues move aside to accommodate the growing baby, the organs, like your intestines, have less support. The abdominal muscles are also responsible for stabilizing your torso. With diastasis recti, you may experience pelvic and back pain, posture problems, and mobility restrictions. In extreme cases, the thinner connective tissues may tear, leading to hernias.

What You Can Do

After pregnancy, the best thing you can do for your body is to let it heal and return to normal. This recovery period can take months, and it is best to avoid activities that will stress your core or abdominal area during this time. If you regularly worked out, this is a reasonable time to skip the gym. Exercises such as sit-ups, crunches, and planks can further damage the area. It would be best if you also avoided movements that increase intra-abdominal pressure, such as deadlifts and squats. Even carrying heavy groceries can put you at risk.

Fortunately, though, you do not have to live like a handicap for months. When your abdominal area has recovered a little after some weeks or a few months, you can help promote the healing process. Although you should still avoid strenuous and intense exercises like CrossFit, there are some exercises on how to fix diastasis recti. Normally, trainers design exercise programs to make you stronger, faster, etc. Physicians and physical therapists who specialize in postpartum care design these exercises with therapy in mind for diastasis recti. The goal is to stimulate your abdominal muscles and tissue to heal and become stronger.

Having diastasis recti can not only bring further body insecurities, but the pain and mobility issues it brings can also prevent you from living your life to the fullest. With the right guidance and therapeutic exercises, not only can you fix your diastasis recti, but you may prevent it from re-occurring if you are pregnant again.