Postpartum belly: Your stomach after birth, explained

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After you deliver your baby, your tummy won’t immediately return to its pre-pregnancy size. Here’s how your postpartum belly might look and what to expect in the upcoming weeks.

Mom bodies are incredibly adaptable. Just consider all the changes that take place in 40 weeks. The most obvious and endearing change of all is a growing belly!

You want your body back now that you’ve entered the new mother stage of life. However, it’s not realistic to expect your post-pregnancy belly to instantly return to its pre-pregnancy state. It takes time to recover, and that’s okay. It’s what Mother Nature intended.

Learn more about your postpartum belly in the following paragraphs, along with safe ways to strengthen your core after pregnancy.

Is it normal to have loose skin on your stomach after giving birth?

After giving birth, sagging skin around the midsection is a common complaint among new mothers.

A woman’s skin gradually stretches during pregnancy to make room for her developing fetus. The skin around the abdomen may take several weeks or even months to return to its pre-pregnancy shape after giving birth. The elasticity of some women’s skin may have diminished.

Before you consider any invasive procedure, such as a tummy tuck, to get rid of loose skin, give your skin some time to heal and perform some abdominal toning exercises. Your doctor may advise you to wear an abdominal binder after a C-section to support your sagging skin and lessen pulling and discomfort near the incision.

What Are The Causes Of Postpartum Belly?

Overstretching of abdominal muscles during pregnancy can cause a saggy appearance of the tummy after childbirth. In addition, some women may experience abdominal rectus diastasis, a condition where the outermost abdominal muscles are separated due to forces stretching linea alba (connective tissue). This can be felt as a bulge in the tummy below the belly button (1).

During the postpartum period, the body’s extra fluid retention should gradually decline (2). As a result, you might also lose weight after giving birth. One of the best ways to lose extra weight gained during pregnancy is to breastfeed, which may also prevent uterus involution. If your doctor determines there are no health problems, you could also try postpartum exercises.

1 Week Postpartum Update | Belly Binding, Exercise & Recovery Tips

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