Diastasis Recti: What is it exactly?

I discovered I had diastasis recti with our second baby girl. As soon as I discovered it, I went to work trying to repair it. I have to admit that I’ve allowed life to get in the way of my DR exercises the past several months. I’ve made some great progress, but I have a little ways to go before it’s gone completely.

Do you have diastasis recti? Or maybe you know someone who has been affected by it? As common as diastasis recti is, it’s more than likely you or someone you know has been impacted by it. But over the next weeks I am going to explain what exactly diastasis recti is, what causes it, how to prevent it, and how to heal it.

What is diastasis recti?

The term “diastasis recti” is made of two Greek words: “diastasis” meaning seperation and “recti” referring to the rectus abdominis muscle. Diastasis recti is a condition in which the right and left halves of the Rectus Abdominis muscle spread apart at the body’s mid line fascia, the linea alba. Pregnancy hormones combined with the uterus’ pressure against the abdominal wall cause a widening and thinning of the mid line tissue that softens the connective tissue. It can occur anytime in the last half of pregnancy but is most commonly seen after pregnancy when the abdominal wall is lax and the thinner mid line tissue no longer provides adequate support for the torso and internal organs. A space of more than 2 to 2.5 finger-widths, or 2 centimeters, is considered problematic, but can be repared with the correct exercise program.

It is a fairly common condition and happens among 2 out of 3 women during pregnancy and postpartum. Having more than one child makes the condition more likely, especially if the children are close in age. It’s more common among women who are over 35 and pregnant, or those having a heavy baby, twins, triplets, or more. But women aren’t the only ones to experience Diastasis Recti. Newborn babies have been known to have Diastasis Recti as well, but usually goes away on its own. Men can also experience Diastasis recti from yo-yo dieting, poor sit-ups technique, or improper weightlifting.

The condition can cause lower back pain, constipation, and urine leaking. It can even make it harder to breathe and to move normally. In very rare, extreme cases, the tissue may tear, and organs may come through the opening resulting in a hernia.

But the good news is that it can be healed and I am going to help you!