Diastasis Recti is the separation of the two rectus abdominal muscles from the linea alba (connective tissue) - you’re left with a gap between the two rectus muscles which can range from 2 fingers width to 5-6 fingers - the connective tissue along the midline of your tummy (the gap) is usually soft and squishy to palpate.
Diastasis is a natural part of the latter stages of pregnancy - it’s your body’s way of making space for your baby as it grows. For this reason it’s prevalent in about 90% of pregnancies
Diastasis is a connective tissue issue - natural healing and repair to the connective tissue happens within the first 9 weeks postpartum - some mums are lucky and heal naturally during this time (usually first pregnancies, smaller babies)
Generally the more stretch to the connective tissue (larger babies, subsequent pregnancies) the longer it takes to repair.
If a diastasis hasn’t repaired naturally by 9 weeks then some form of intervention is required to promote it’s recovery (core rehab)
1:3 mums still have a diastasis a year after giving birth
A diastasis is a sign that your core muscles are still weak after pregnancy and not yet able to support you properly (day to day and during exercise)
Having a diastasis 1 year postpartum will put pressure on your lower back and pelvic floor causing chronic lower back pain and pelvic floor dysfunctions such as incontinence & pelvic organ prolapse. It’ll also compromise your posture and ability to move pain free
Incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse and chronic lower back pain are debilitating, reduce quality of life and can drain time and money on management
So why are we not all automatically getting checked for diastasis and provided with the necessary information and a step by step guide for recovery??
Postnatal health care will improve in the UK and these simple checks will become mandatory
Early awareness of diastasis can really make a difference to your quality of life and ability to enjoy motherhood