"FAMILY...is a little world created by LOVE"

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Diastasis Recti

"is the separation between the left and right side of the rectus abdominis muscle, which covers the front surface of the belly area. In pregnant women, increased tension on the abdominal wall may lead to diastasis recti. A diastasis recti looks like a ridge, which runs down the middle of the belly area"

(Crunch Position)
(the ridge is smushy, theres absolutely NO muscle there)
So, I have been wondering if I was just a weirdo and that my stomach was just different from everyone elses, but after finally researching it I have discovered that what I am experiencing is pretty common with pregnancies, especially when gaining a significant about of weight during your pregnancy, and with having large babies, or multiples, and just so happens I experienced 2 of these 3. I gained a total of 61 lbs, and Braden was 9 lbs 9 oz.

Finding out that this happens to many women didn't exactly make me feel any better and the question was still lingering in the back of my brain...


It tells me that getting my pre-pregnancy stomach is attainable, but MUCH harder, and will take time and patience on my part. Lots of cardio. Lots of situps. Also, to be careful when exercising, not to overdo it because you can hurt your stomach more by tearing the muscles or stretching them out even more, rather than actually helping it reattach the left and right sides.

I am used to being a Size 2, so this takes a LOT of guts for me to post! Please leave me your comments, your postpartum body challenges, and assure me that I can do this, and that I'm not the only one that hasn't shrunk back down to her pre-pregnancy size overnight!



Mel said...

Aw! You are definitely brave for posting this!! You know I am struggling as well. After 12 months of nursing and losing a dramatic amount of weight so quickly (70 lbs in 7 months), my left breast is doing something weird where my skin gets all wrinkled and looks like something happened to me. I can't really explain it, but it is disgusting and I can't even look at my chest anymore without feeling grossed out by that. It was worth it, obviously, but I have already decided that I'll be getting plastic surgery at some point to fix it. I am painfully vain, I can admit that, but it is hard to know your body your entire life and then see it change like it does after having a baby. Again, worth it TOTALLY, but we are still women and want to feel beautiful and proud of/comfortable with our bodies.

Melissa said...

Yea, I have already thought of a tummy tuck, lipo, and there is a specific surgical procedure to fix this ridge in the stomach, if exercise doesnt help. LOL!

Kristin said...

OMGOSH Melissa I don't think a tummy tuck and lipo is necessary! =) You can do it girl!! I would try to find a partner to work out with or a gym class to go to so that you're having fun and being held accountable for your workouts. I know you can do it, and you are so beautiful with or without a tight tummy!! And look at that beautiful baby boy you made...totally worth it!

Melissa said...

Thanks Kristin! I definitely dont see ANY of those procedures in my near future, of course. And, I really think I can do it too! I must say though, that baby boy IS totally worth it!

Anonymous said...

Crunches, along with all other abdominal exercises that flex the spine against the force of gravity make diastasis worse. Not only do these moves stretch the mid line, they will prevent the abdominal wall from re-flattening after pregnancy.

To close diastasis you need to first build A LOT of strength in your deepest abdodminal muscle, your Transverse Abdominis, or TvA.

Then you need to train the muscle to function properly as a stabilizer, so that when the external muscles, the Rectus and Obliques are working, that the mid line does not open up more, and the abdominal wall does not bulge outward.

Manual splinting of the Rectus, with the hands, is helpful to aid the TvA, when you're in the initial postpartum rehab period.


Melissa said...

Be-Fit Mom: What does manual splinting mean? And, what types of exercises would you suggest?

Brettney said...

I had this the first few months after brooks was born. (we all do) but it has gone back to normal. it just takes time, different amounts for each person. the manual splinting is literally holding your stomach together with your hands. like you are pushing your muscles together. I have a friend who bought a thing that went around her waist and held her tummy together really tight for this same thing. stick to your good diet and exercise. it takes time, but you will see results!

Anonymous said...

I think I may have this same problem. Almost a year ago I gave birth to a 10lb baby, and I so sad about how my body looks. I used to love my tummy. Now I hate it. I want to go to the pool with my family without having to be completely covered. I haven't talked to a doctor about this yet, but when I do crunches I have the same bulge right above my belly button. I have been excercising like crazy. Cutting out all dairy, sweets and breads. Eating a lot fresh fruits and vegetables. I have lost the weight, but unfortunately my tummy doesn't look the same at all. I am so sad I can't even talk to my husband about this.

Jamie said...

Hello, I'm curious what kind of results you've achieved since this post. I'm a mother of 3, my youngest now 3. I've have this kind of separation and ridge nearly the entire time. I sort of feel (after reading the comments) that our OBGYN's should be more responsible to inform & educate their patients about this condition & how to effectively repair it! I'm worried I may have permanent separation as I've been working out old fashioned way & now have a 4" wide ridge down stomach and if I do a push up the whole middle section just hangs down like a blob. Very discouraging!