Pregnant woman laying on her side

Diastasis Recti is a big word that is being tossed around these days a bit more than ever before, but do you know what it actually means? Diastasis Recti (known as DR) is a split in the lining of one of the core muscles, rectus abdominis….otherwise known as the “6-pack muscle”. What people also don’t realize is that 100% of pregnant women get DR by the end of their pregnancy. The only way for a body to be able to carry a child to full term is by the muscle parting down the center, however, DR is not often explained to pregnant/new mothers during their pregnancy journey.

With that being said, the body tries extremely hard to get back to “normal” postpartum. However, not everyone’s body is capable of lessening this split of the left and right side of the rectus abdominis muscles on their own.

Yes, you can live with this forever and yes, some ladies are lucky to have their bodies return to muscle unity on their own. Most often, many women returned to their previous level of function even with Diastasis Recti. But more importantly, your best option is to be examined by a Physical Therapist (PT) and learn ways to reduce the gap as much as possible.

Core exercise with ball

Unfortunately, not many women are aware that this is even possible, let alone that they may currently suffer from DR, so seeking out help can be daunting. In this type of situation, it is better to be safe than sorry. Seeking out PT services to get the original examination done is especially important to complete in the first few months following childbirth. Diastasis Recti is not just a concern for the loss of core strength, but may also cause low back pain and difficulty picking up and carrying heavy items (in most cases, your newborn baby). Furthermore, women are left with questions as to why they are burdened with all of this pain.

Your core and back are very closely related, and rely on each other to hold the body upright with every task, as well as to create a solid base for any lifting activities. If your core muscle is not strong enough, or DR has occurred, then the results are that your lower and mid back take on 100% of the load, resulting in quicker extreme low back pain.

Postpartum exercise

For any expectant, new, or experienced mammas out there, contacting your local PT to get an examination of your core, as well as getting some new ideas to reduce that low back pain is so important!! Contact us today for more information or to schedule an appointment. Taking care of your own body is just as important as taking care of your new little one!