Do you know that 267 babies are born per minute globally?
Becoming a new mom is one of the most rewarding events in life. Welcoming a new baby brings new challenges and responsibilities. And it is not only that the external environment has changed, but your body has changed too.
So be assured that worrying about your postpartum belly is normal. And you are not alone!
Read on to find out what to expect after birthing a baby and how to improve your postpartum belly.
Some women describe their postpartum stomach as a balloon. You may also look bloated or deflated, and you may still look like you have a baby bump. All those looks are common, and there isn’t anything to worry about.
After you give birth, you will lose weight naturally. The exact weight will differ, but you may lose around 13 pounds. The loss of the pounds happens because of the fluid loss, the placenta, and of course, the baby’s weight you no longer carry.
Your stomach and the uterus will start to contract shortly after birthing a baby. It may take around six weeks for your uterus to go back to its pre-pregnancy size. This will help with weight loss.
However, your postpartum belly may still look like it did when you were pregnant.
One of the biggest complaints after birthing a baby is sagging, or loose, skin. Again, it is a normal and perfectly natural occurrence, so don’t worry.
During pregnancy, your stomach skin needs to stretch to accommodate the growing baby. It may take weeks or months for the skin to return to ‘normal’. However, the skin may lose its elasticity altogether.
It is important to give your skin some time to recover before taking any steps toward invasive procedures. Gentle abdominal toning exercises or tools such as an abdominal binder may be recommended.
Furter to sagging skin, you may experience abdominal separation, also called diastasis recti. Abdominal separation happens when your left and right abdominal wall muscles create a gap and separate. The connective tissue holding them together weakens and needs time to heal postpartum.
If you suspect you have an abdominal separation, try not to lift heavy objects, and avoid intense abdominal stretching exercises. There are some specialized exercises for abdominal separation that you can do as well as you may wear a brace or compression underwear.
But above all, be gentle with your body and allow time to recover and heal.
Your body has changed during pregnancy to accommodate your baby. You most likely gained some extra pounds and stretch marks and experienced different food cravings. After birthing a baby your body may stay similar to your pregnant body for quite some time.
Each woman is different, so there isn’t an exact timeframe on when your postpartum belly goes away. Some women will carry it for a week, months, or even a year or longer.
The important thing to remember is that it is normal for your postpartum belly to be there! After all, you have just given birth.
There are some factors playing a role in how long it will take for your postpartum belly to go away.
Your postpartum belly size and shape will be affected by your size and shape before you conceive. It will also look different depending on how many children you have had. You will look different with baby number one, and then with baby number two or three.
In addition, your activity level and dietary habits also play a role in your body transformation. Even genetics can affect the look of your postpartum stomach.
Your body may naturally bounce back to its pre-pregnancy shape, or it may take on a new look. Certain features may have changed and stretch marks or excess skin may be a part of your new body.
However, it is important to embrace your body as it is. Your body has undergone a magnificent transformation. And no matter the postpartum shape and size, it performed a miracle.
The good news is that your postpartum belly can go away! But it may take time and persistence in building healthy habits.
To start off, look after your mental health. Give yourself grace and celebrate yourself.
It goes without saying that everybody is different, so the time to improve your postpartum belly will differ too. Begin with having realistic expectations.
Maybe you heard that for someone it took only six months to go back to their pre-pregnancy body. But that doesn’t mean that it is a standard and it will be the same for you. Your body has done one of the most incredible things in this world, so be patient.
After birthing a baby your body requires rest and recovery so it can heal. Look after yourself as much as you can so you feel strong and ready to embrace the new life.
Eating a healthy and nutritious diet will help with your body’s recovery. Carry on with a balanced diet postpartum, especially if you are breastfeeding. It will not only provide the nutrients your new baby needs, but it will also help you to lose your postpartum stomach.
Staying active and exercising regularly, once you get the go-ahead from your doctor, can help with losing the excess fat.
Start slowly with walking and body weight exercises, and once it is safe add other forms such as running and core exercises. Some forms of exercises that can help with building your abdominal muscles and bringing your body into pre-pregnancy shape are plank, bicycle crunches, or burpees.
It is both natural and normal that you will have a postpartum belly. But don’t worry, there are ways to help your body to get back in shape.
Be gentle with yourself, and rest as much as possible. Look after your body by eating a healthy diet and incorporating daily exercises. And if you are ready to start your postpartum journey, contact us today to schedule a consultation!