“My slim waist is gone” “I can’t get my big belly back” “There is no vest line anymore”… After giving birth to a baby, when I see my round and loose belly in the mirror, many people originally thought New mothers with graceful figures may feel depressed, and some may even suffer from anxiety. Everyone has a love for beauty. For women in a special period, remember to establish a correct understanding and do not rush for success or exercise blindly in order to restore your figure. Otherwise, it may be counterproductive and affect your health.
Women after childbirth must first understand a medical term, diastasis rectus abdominis. Rectus abdominis separation mostly occurs in late pregnancy and after delivery. As the uterus increases in late pregnancy, the abdominal wall expands and extends. At this time, the rectus abdominis muscles on both sides separate from the midline of the abdomen to both sides, and the separation distance is >2 cm. Normally, diastasis of the rectus abdominis will gradually recover 12 weeks after delivery, but some rectus abdominis muscles are overstretched and unable to recover on their own after delivery. Compared with natural delivery, cesarean section has a higher risk of diastasis rectus abdominis. Advanced maternal age, excessive weight gain during pregnancy, multiple pregnancies, multiple pregnancies, and heavy pre-pregnancy weight will all increase the risk of diastasis recti abdominis.
Rectus abdominis separation not only affects the aesthetics of the body, but also causes waist pain. In severe cases, it can cause displacement of organs and cause functional disorders. To prevent rectus abdominis diastasis, measures such as reducing pre-pregnancy weight, increasing exercise, controlling reasonable weight gain during pregnancy, and giving birth as naturally as possible can be taken.
How do you know if you have diastasis recti? There is a simple self-test method at home – the finger width measurement method. The new mother can lie on her back on the bed, with her legs bent and her feet flat on the bed. She can relax her body naturally, gently raise her head and shoulders, and insert the index finger and middle finger of one hand vertically into the midline of the abdomen (on the navel and navel respectively). and 3-4 cm below the navel), you can feel the abdominal muscles on both sides squeezing your fingers toward the middle to see how many fingers wide it is, and then confirm the value of your fingers after standing up.
Generally speaking, it is normal for the distance between the rectus abdominis muscles on both sides to be within 2 cm, which is about the distance between two transverse fingers (index finger, middle finger). However, the width of fingers varies from person to person. It is recommended to measure your fingers after standing up. Mild rectus abdominis separation is about 2-3 cm, moderate rectus abdominis separation is about 3-5 cm, and severe rectus abdominis separation is greater than 5 cm.
If you want to understand the condition of rectus abdominis separation more accurately, it is recommended to go to the hospital for imaging examination. Currently, the most recommended clinical method is ultrasound measurement, which can effectively evaluate the degree of rectus abdominis separation.
Once diastasis recti is diagnosed, don’t be nervous because there are many effective non-surgical treatments. Of course, the prerequisite for non-surgical treatment is that the separation of the rectus abdominis muscles is 2-3 finger widths (generally no more than 3 cm). At this time, postpartum women can intervene through exercises at home, such as plank support, kneeling leg extension, standing abdominal tightening, etc. It should be noted that do not do sit-ups and abdominal curls. These exercises can cause rectus abdominis separation. further aggravated. In addition, non-surgical treatment methods also include traditional Chinese medicine rehabilitation therapy and neuromuscular electrical stimulation, all of which can significantly shorten the distance between the rectus abdominis muscles.
If you need to go out during the recovery period but do not want to affect your body beauty, postpartum women can improve the appearance of their “belly” by using abdominal belts, shaping garments, etc. If the separation width of the rectus abdominis exceeds 5 cm, accompanied by uncomfortable symptoms such as appearance changes and low back pain, and there is no significant improvement after non-surgical treatment, surgical treatment can be performed. In short, diastasis rectus abdominis can be cured through scientific means. Don’t let a small belly become a psychological burden for postpartum women. (Shang Yuhuan, head nurse of Hernia and Abdominal Wall Surgery Department, Beijing Chaoyang Hospital)