How To Get Rid Of Diastasis Recti Years Later? – Heal & Rebuild Your Abs Back!
Are you suffering from Diastasis Recti? Commonly known as the “mummy tummy” or the “belly pooch”? You gave birth and then your abs waved goodbye to you. Diastasis recti is found in most women who are pregnant and who have given birth. Here is all the information you need to know if you or anyone you know has this condition.
Motherhood is rewarding for a myriad of reasons. Your baby seems like a gift, but with the baby, there come drastic changes in your body. Pregnancy and childbirth definitely take a toll on women’s bodies. Diastasis Recti is a condition that women experience after pregnancy.
Don’t let the name scare you. The belly sticks out because the space between your left and right abdominal muscles has gotten bigger. It can be seen in newborn babies sometimes or in men if they work out the wrong way.
How To Get Rid Of Diastasis Recti Years Later?
In most women, Diastasis Recti heal on its own, mostly in about 6 months. But if it’s been a while since you had a baby and you catch yourself thinking about how to get rid of Diastasis Recti years later or if you had a C-section, you might be interested in knowing how to fix Diastasis Recti after a c-section. This article covers everything you need to know about your belly pooch.
How To Check For Diastasis Recti?
You can check for Diastasis Recti in many ways, but the best way to check for it is to get an ultrasound. You can check them with your fingers or have someone check them for you. The easiest way to check for this is through the depth and width measurements.
What you will have to do is measure the gap between your rectus abdominis muscle or your belly muscles. Unfortunately, this method might not be completely accurate and the width with which your muscles are aligned may not indicate the severity of your Diastasis Recti.
Try to feel the ridges of your abdominal muscles and if the gap width between them is more than 2.7 cm then you are likely to have this condition. However, the depth of separation might be a more telling indication of Diastasis Recti. You should only perform this test when you are at least 6 weeks postpartum.
How To Perform A Self Assessment?
????Lie down on your back. Place your feet flat on the ground. Put one hand behind your head and the other hand on your bra line. Now you can begin your examination.
????Walk your fingers down the middle of your stomach, keep going until you reach about 2 inches below your navel. The tissue there is called the linea alba (1). Get a feel of that tissue. The tissue will either feel springy or it will have no resistance when you press down. It will be soft and squishy. This assessment is done when you’re at rest.
????Now take a deep breath, and on exhaling, lift your head about an inch off the ground. While exhaling, walk your fingers down the middle of your stomach again, get a feel of the tissue, and determine the depth and width of the separation.
????Now compare the two. Did you feel any difference? Did the tissue feel tighter while your head was lifted? If so, then this is a good sign. It means that your linea alba can generate tension. If there was no difference at all while doing the two, then it means the tissue there is more compromised.
????Roll to your side and get up.
How Do You Fix Diastasis Recti?
Diastasis recti usually heal on their own. Most women can heal from them about 6 months postpartum. A common question asked by people dealing with this is how to get rid of Diastasis Recti years later with exercise. This condition can be reduced through exercise. What Diastasis Recti need to heal is for you to rebuild your core from the inside out.
The deepest muscle in the stomach, the transverse abdominis (2) (TVA) needs to be strengthened for it to be able to support the muscles that have been stretched out. As the TVA gets strengthened, you will feel more tension there. You can track your progress with this.
It is vital for you to regain strength in your pelvic floor and diaphragm. They work together with your abdominal muscles when you’re performing such exercises. So once you gain your core strength back, you can see the progress. The abdominal muscles should go back to the way it is supposed to be.
Can You Get Rid Of Diastasis Recti Without Surgery?
Diastasis Recti can be stubborn. It can be severe and still leave you looking pregnant, years after you’ve given birth. Exercise can help a lot in fixing Diastasis Recti. People usually want to know how to fix Diastasis Recti without surgery. In most cases, Diastasis Recti is not that extreme, and the body can usually sort it out on its own. Diastasis Recti, to an extent, is normal in women who are pregnant. In some significant cases, it cannot be corrected in any other way than a surgery.
You only have to have surgery if your abdominal muscle weakness is interfering with your daily life. This condition makes your belly stick out, so it might still appear that your pregnancy tummy is still there. Some women are bothered by this bump that is called the belly pooch. Now if the belly pooch bothers you, then you can get surgery for cosmetic reasons.
How Can You Get Rid Of Diastasis Recti Naturally?
A good alternative to surgery is consulting a physical therapist. A physical therapist can teach you the necessary exercises you need to do to strengthen your abdominal core. They will also teach you what workouts to avoid. A therapist might not be able to cure your Diastasis Recti completely.
However, they will be able to guide you in the right direction. You might be wondering how to fix Diastasis Recti after pregnancy; proper exercises can help you out with that. Sometimes you might not know where to start.
Each body is different and might need specific exercises to get rid of the mummy tummy. A physical therapist can help you out with that. If you’re recovering from a C-section, you can get rid of your Diastasis Recti by doing pelvic floor exercises. There are also certain breathing exercises that you can do from a safe position. Walking will also help you a lot in curing Diastasis Recti if you have undergone a C-section.
Some exercises to fix Diastasis Recti.
Umbrella Breathing With Kegel
- Stand with your knees slightly bent or sit on a yoga ball.
- Take a deep breath like your rib cage opens up, start the exhale will a kegel (3), then empty your lower belly, then the middle, and then chest.
- Make sure to engage your abdominal muscles as you do this.
Toe Taps Lying On Back
- Lie flat on your back; bring your legs into a tabletop position.
- Keep your knees directly above your hips. Don’t arch your backs.
- Inhale and then exhale; while doing that, tap your right foot on the floor.
- Draw in your core and see that you maintain your pelvic alignment.
- Inhale as you return to normal.
- Do 10 reps each.
Pelvic Tilts On Hands And Knees
- Start by going on your hands and knees and keeping your spine straight.
- Take a deep breath and then exhale while doing a kegel, draw your tail bone under your curled spine.
- Inhale as you return to normal.
- Relax your glutes and move from your lower abs.
- This cow position is not advised for people with severe Diastasis Recti.
Tummy Tucker For Diastasis Recti
A tummy tuck or abdominoplasty is very similar to the surgery performed for Diastasis Recti. Both of them involve bringing separated muscles back together. In a tummy tuck, they remove excess fat and skin from the area. (4)
Women who are undergoing surgery for Diastasis Recti also undergo a tummy tuck. It is designed to support and strengthen the abdominal wall. Diet and exercise go a long way, but most doctors agree that you can’t really fix Diastasis Recti completely without surgery.
What Happens If you Don’t Fix Diastasis Recti?
Diastasis Recti is a condition that requires treatment. If it doesn’t heal on its own, it can lead to many complications later. For most women who are suffering from severe cases of Diastasis Recti, it’s not just a cosmetic concern.
The abdominal and pelvic muscles which are weakened due to this condition often lead to difficulty while working out, constipation, lower back or pelvic pain. It also causes discomfort in daily life. Painful intercourse is also an effect of prolonged Diastasis Recti. The tissues are susceptible to tears, which might cause a hernia.
Since it causes further complications when left untreated, it is better to consult with a physician and do what’s best for your body.
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Diastasis Recti is a condition commonly seen in women who have undergone pregnancy. The muscles of the abdomen get separated as pregnancy causes great strain on the stomach. This abdominal separation is normal and should heal itself in about 6 months but in some cases, it may take up to 12 months. It can be helped a lot with exercise, but when it’s extreme surgery is usually performed.
The surgery is similar to a tummy tuck. Leaving severe Diastasis Recti untreated may cause discomfort and pain for women. So if you have been dealing with Diastasis Recti and it hasn’t been healing on its own go consult a doctor and check what are your alternatives. It is possible to correct Diastasis Recti even years later with surgery.
Radiopaedia.org. (2005 -2022). Linea alba. [Online] Available at:https://radiopaedia.org/articles/linea-alba
Physiopedia. (2022). Transversus Abdominis. [Online] Available at:https://www.physio-pedia.com/Transversus_Abdominis
Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (MFMER). (1998-2022). Kegel exercises: A how-to guide for women. [Online] Available at:https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/womens-health/in-depth/kegel-exercises/art-20045283
Cleveland Clinic. (2022). Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck). [Online] Available at:https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/treatments/11017-abdominoplasty-tummy-tuck
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