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Does your tummy feel weak after your baby?

Owner of BodyRight Chartered Physiotherapy Sarah Plunkett answers your questions on Injury & Pain Management, Postural Problems, Women's Health and Core Strengthening.

Does your tummy feel weak after your baby?

Postby Bodyrightphysio » Thu May 19, 2011 4:37 pm

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Posts: 174
It may be because of Diastasis Recti a common occurrence after Pregnancy.

What is a diastasis?
A diastasis is a separation of the rectus abdominis (outermost abdominal muscles). When these muscles separate the connective tissue that joins them stretches sideways. The more it stretches sideways the thinner and weaker it becomes. Pregnancy can put a lot of a strain on the diastasis. Closing the diastasis will give you a flatter belly, a smaller waist and may relieve back problems.

Can diastasis be harmful?
The function of the abdominal muscle group is for normal movement and supporting your back and your organs. When the muscles separate this support system is weakened causing lower back pain and the "mummy tummy." Sometimes the ‘mummy tummy’ is actually your protruding organs. They are protruding because they are being supported by a thin piece of connective tissue instead of your muscles. If there is trauma to the abdominal area and the connective tissue is torn away from the muscle, a ventral hernia can develop and surgery will be required.

How long will it take to close my diastasis?
This depends on two things
1. The distance between the two muscles. The wider the diastasis the longer it takes to close it.
2. The condition of the connective tissue. The weaker the connective tissue the longer it takes to heal. As the muscles come together the abdominal wall is strengthened which can take weeks to months.

How can physiotherapy help?
Physiotherapists with special training will tape your diastasis and give you exercises to help you minimise your diastices.

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