During pregnancy, the growing uterus stretches the muscles in the abdomen. This can cause the two large parallel bands of muscles that meet in the middle of the abdomen (rectus muscles) to become separated by an abnormal distance — a condition called diastasis recti or diastasis recti abdominis.
When do abs start splitting in pregnancy?
It usually starts in the second half of pregnancy. Abdominal separation is more common in women who have had more than 1 child, are aged over 35 or who are having twins or triplets (or more). It can also occur in a small-statured woman who is having a larger-than-average baby.
How can I prevent my stomach from splitting while pregnant?
The science is conclusive that the safest and most effective strategy for preventing diastasis is with consistent physical activity, weight management, and core strengthening exercises (including crunches) throughout a healthy pregnancy and postpartum.
Does diastasis recti go away?
In most cases, recti diastasis usually heals on its own over a postpartum period of 6 weeks to 3 months. However, Diastasis Recti Abdominis may also persist long after the woman delivered.
What happens when your abs split during pregnancy?
Most women will experience some abdominal separation during pregnancy. This can weaken your core and lead to back or pelvic pain. You may need to wear a binder or Tubigrip for support during the day.
What does diastasis recti feel like during pregnancy?
Severe diastasis recti may feel like a pool of Jell-O. That’s because the rectus abdominis muscles are pushed further apart, offering no resistance in the middle, even when you tighten your abs. Alternatively, you may notice a “pooch” around your belly button that looks like a ball of pizza dough.
Can tensing your stomach muscles harm your baby?
These are inappropriate and ineffective during pregnancy – ineffective because the stretch on your abdominal muscles means they cannot work the way they did before you were pregnant; and inappropriate because the exercise is done lying on your back.