diastasis recti healing exercises during pregnancy

Diastasis recti: How to heal ab separation after pregnancy

Diastasis recti: How to heal ab separation after pregnancy

Bringing a new life into the world is a remarkable journey, but it can leave behind physical changes that require careful attention and recovery. Diastasis recti, a condition characterized by the separation of the abdominal muscles, is a common postpartum issue that many women face. In this comprehensive guide, we will explore what diastasis recti is, its causes, and most importantly, effective strategies for healing and closing the abdominal gap after pregnancy.

Understanding Diastasis Recti

Diastasis recti occurs when the connective tissue between the rectus abdominis muscles, commonly known as the "six-pack" muscles, stretches and weakens during pregnancy. This separation creates a gap, leaving the abdominal organs less supported and the core less stable. Symptoms may include a bulging or doming of the stomach, lower back pain, and a weakened pelvic floor.

Causes of Diastasis Recti

  • Pregnancy: The most common cause of diastasis recti is pregnancy. The growing uterus puts pressure on the abdominal muscles, leading to separation.
  • Incorrect Abdominal Exercises: Performing exercises that strain the midline of the abdomen, such as traditional crunches, can contribute to diastasis recti or worsen existing separation.
  • Genetics: Some individuals may have a genetic predisposition to weakened connective tissue, making them more susceptible to diastasis recti.
  • Multiple Pregnancies: Women who have had multiple pregnancies are at a higher risk of developing diastasis recti, as their abdominal muscles have undergone more stretching.

Also see: 7 Habits You Need to Change to Prevent Lower Back Pain

Diagnosing Diastasis Recti

It's crucial to consult with a healthcare professional to diagnose diastasis recti accurately. Typically, a physical examination is performed to assess the width and depth of the separation. In some cases, imaging studies like ultrasound may be used to provide a more detailed view.

Tips for Healing Diastasis Recti

  • Core-Strengthening Exercises
    • Focus on exercises that engage the transverse abdominis, such as pelvic tilts and deep abdominal contractions.
    • Incorporate diaphragmatic breathing to activate the deep core muscles and facilitate healing.
  • Physical Therapy
    • Consult with a physical therapist experienced in postpartum care.
    • Receive guidance on exercises tailored to your specific condition and learn proper body mechanics.
  • Pelvic Floor Exercises
    • Strengthen the pelvic floor muscles with Kegel exercises to provide additional support to the core.
  • Posture Awareness
    • Maintain good posture to reduce intra-abdominal pressure and prevent further separation.
    • Avoid movements that strain the abdominal muscles, such as heavy lifting without proper technique.
  • Nutrition
    • Support the healing process with a well-balanced diet rich in nutrients, including protein, vitamins, and minerals.
    • Stay hydrated to promote tissue elasticity.
  • Gradual Return to Exercise
    • Avoid high-impact exercises and focus on low-impact activities like swimming or walking during the initial stages of recovery.
    • Gradually reintroduce strength training, ensuring proper form and modification of exercises as needed.
  • Compression Garments
    • Consider wearing abdominal binders or compression garments to provide external support to the abdominal muscles.

Healing diastasis recti is a gradual process that requires patience and dedication. By adopting a holistic approach that combines targeted exercises, professional guidance, and lifestyle adjustments, women can effectively close the abdominal gap and restore core strength after pregnancy. Remember to consult with healthcare professionals, including physical therapists and nutritionists, to tailor a personalized recovery plan that suits your unique needs. Embracing self-care and prioritizing your well-being will contribute to a smoother and more fulfilling postpartum journey.

As a new mother, be sure and take care of yourself both physically and emotionally. It’s important to remember that healing from diastasis recti takes time and patience. It may take one or two months post-delivery, so be patient, and continue your exercises and abdominal support.

Be kind to yourself and don’t expect to see results overnight. With time and consistency, you can strengthen your abdominal muscles.

Remember this blog provides general information and should not replace professional medical advice. If you suspect you have diastasis recti or are looking for ways to prevent it during pregnancy, talk to your OBGYN for guidance or please visit or call the Nearest Emergency Room for a immediate medical help.

We have ER locations across the Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area that are open and here to help you 24/7 If you or your family have a medical emergency.

We have 9 facilities spread across the DFW area with average wait times of less than 10 mins that are OPEN 24/7 located in Hurst, Colleyville, Frisco, Highland Village, Hillcrest, Uptown, Little Elm, Mansfield, and Texoma.