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Diastasis Recti

Diastasis recti refers to the partial or complete separation of the rectus abdominis, or “six-pack” muscles, which meet at the midline of the stomach. It is very common during and following pregnancy. This is because the uterus stretches the muscles in the abdomen to accommodate the growing baby. One study found that up to 60 percent of women may experience diastasis recti during pregnancy or postpartum. About 40% of those who have diastasis recti still have it by six months postpartum.


What are the symptoms of Diastasis Recti?


It is easy to miss warning signs of diastasis recti, and many people only notice it when they are postpartum. Women can have diastasis recti during pregnancy, but it's hard to distinguish because the abdomen is stretched.

Common signs of Diastasis Recti during the postpartum period


  • A noticeable bulge that sticks out above or below the belly button.

  • Jelly-like or soft feeling around the belly button.

  • Coning or doming when contracting the ab muscles.

  • Affects performance of basic functions such as walking.

  • Pain during sex.

  • Pelvic or hip pain.

  • Lower back pain.

  • Poor posture.

  • Uncontrollable urine leak when sneezing or coughing.

  • Constipation.

  • Feeling weak in the abdominals.


How do I check for Diastasis Recti on my own?


Diastasis recti can occur in 3 areas: above the belly button, below the belly button, and at the belly button. To conduct a diastasis recti test, follow these four steps.

1.    Lie flat on your back with your knees bent.

2.    Place your fingers on your belly button, pointing towards your pelvis, and press down.

3.    Lift your head up about an inch while keeping your shoulders on the ground.

4.    If you have diastasis recti, you will feel a gap between the muscles that is an inch wide (~ 2 fingers) or greater.

Book a consultation with us to find out more about your condition.
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