Although taking care of yourself during your pregnancy and childbirth is important, so is caring for your body post-pregnancy. The body goes through many changes during pregnancy and childbirth, resulting in stretched out, sore muscles that need some serious rest and relaxation.
Coping with your pregnant body can be hard as certain conditions can make simple movements uncomfortable. The best way to recover from pregnancy and childbirth is by doing simple and easy stretches and exercises that help strengthen your muscles and get you back to moving freely.
There are three main areas that usually are benefited the most from physiotherapy after birth: the abdominal muscles, the pelvic floor and the back.
The Abdominal Muscles
While you’re pregnant the uterus stretches and grows to allow space for the baby. During this time your abdominal muscles are stretching and moving apart to accommodate the growing size inside the body, causing a common condition called diastasis recti.
It would be easy for someone to think the best way to fix it is to start hitting the gym and doing some sit ups but that would be wrong. You need to take it slow and easy to allow them to come back together and gain strength back.
Some of the options we offer our clients at South Orange Rehabilitation and Wellness include light core work that focuses on the deeper core muscles. We also have the option of utilizing an ab splint to help your abs heal.
The Pelvic Floor
Your pelvic floor takes a huge hit during labor and delivery. The effects on your pelvic floor are more substantial if you do a vaginal birth however, even if you have a caesarean there’s still a high chance of pelvic floor weakness.
When your pelvic floor isn’t strengthened the way it should be it can lead to issues in bladder and bowel control as well as sexual function. It can even make your vagina feel heavy or cause discomfort.
By doing light physiotherapy exercises you can slowly strengthen your pelvic floor again, helping you avoid future issues such as urine leakage. Pelvic floor exercises are the most effective when personalized for each person’s body which is why seeing a physical therapist can make your efforts more effective.
The Spine and Back
Not only can your back hurt during pregnancy but it’s very common for those aches to continue after childbirth. This is because your abs help support the muscles in your back so if they both aren’t strengthened the way they should be, it can lead to issues.
Additionally, you are now lifting and bending much more than usual. You can make your daily activities safer by working on strengthening your back — which also keeps your baby safer.
Some common things your physical therapist might recommend include bending from the knees and watching your posture. You can then do light daily stretches that will allow your back muscles to recover from the past 9 months.
Here For Your Post-Pregnancy Needs
Here at South Orange Rehabilitation and Wellness (SORW), we focus on you, the patient. We understand that post-pregnancy can be a sensitive and emotional time. We want to make you feel comfortable and at home when you come to visit us.
We have many trained professionals so if you would feel more comfortable with a certain physical therapist over another, we can help you find the perfect fit. We can also guide you in the process and give you a layout of what your recovery will look like.
If you’re looking to heal from your pregnancy and labor, reach out to us on our website today for more information or to schedule an appointment. We can’t wait to meet you.