What you need to know about C-section belly bands

After bringing baby home, you are ready to start on the road to recovery, especially if you delivered via a C-section. It can be tough to recover, but a C-section belly band, sometimes called a C-section recovery belt, might be a good option for you. But what are they exactly?

What are C-section belly bands?

These kinds of wraps have been around for generations and generations. After giving birth, people would even take sheets and wrap them around their midsections. The point of wrapping the midsection is because after delivery (even vaginally), wrapping can help you feel better as the organs shift back into place that were moved around during pregnancy. It also can help keep the surgical incision from the C-section tucked away and clean. Plus, it can help to reduce pain during your recovery period. It works by compressing your abdominal transverse muscle, which you cannot yet contract after giving birth. It has also been said that a belly band can help align your spine, as well.

Woman Wearing A Belly Band
Anastasiya Tsiasemnikava/Shutterstock

Do C-section belly bands work?

Many women swear by using belly bands after they have delivered their child. They tend to wear them not only directly after birth, but also in the weeks and even months after birth because of the support that these bands can give. Because many women often feel as though their bodies feel like “Jell-O,” these bands offer support and stability for them and help them to build up their core muscles that have shifted around during pregnancy — something that happens during all pregnancies. They can help shrink your uterus back down to size, which also helps to alleviate any kind of postpartum pain or discomfort. This means that you can theoretically get back to your normal activities sooner. But before deciding, you should always consult with your doctor if you plan to wear a belly band.

Are C-section belly bands safe?

Belly wrapping after a C-section wrap is generally safe, but as we said, speak to your doctor before you go ahead and order one, just to make sure that it is the right thing for you because everyone’s body is different. In saying that, there are a few things that you need to know if you are planning on using a belly band:

  • Do not wrap too tightly. Wrapping your belly band too tightly around your abdomen after giving birth is one of the worst things you can do. Taking the compression too far can create real problems, like pelvic floor prolapse, which is basically a bulge in your pelvic floor. All of that pressure cannot be placed on the abdomen; it has to go somewhere else, and the pelvic floor is where it will go. That can take even longer to recover from than the pregnancy and delivery itself, so it is best to err on the side of caution and not compress too much.
  • Don’t wear it for too long. Because of the risk to the pelvic floor and possible damage, doctors usually don’t recommend women wear one too long. Typically, a few weeks to a month is what is generally prescribed for women postpartum. Many doctors want to see women get back their muscles on their own after a few weeks of wearing one.
Pregnant Woman In Belly Band
staras/Shutterstock

How do I know if it is right for me?

There are some special cases in which wearing a C-section belly band may not be recommended. If you have had conditions like severe preeclampsia, doctors may tell you to stay away from wearing a compression band. Also, women who have had separation of their surgical C-section incisions may be told to not wear one, either. However, generally, belly wraps are a safe option for women who have just delivered their little ones.

If you are looking to wear a belly band, it might be a good option for you. However, be sure to speak with your doctor before wearing one to make sure it is the right choice for you.

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