What Can You do to Help Your C-section Recovery?
At Dalhousie Health & Wellness we have a variety of options to help ease the discomforts associated with c-section recovery. Many women are eager to rush into activities that can harm their low backs, core and pelvic floors. Most women simply aren’t ready to go back to the rigors of life and physical activity at their 6 week postpartum checkup. YES, your tissues have healed... but the most important question is, how is your body functioning? Do you leak urine when you laugh, cough, sneeze, jump or run? Do you feel heaviness in your pelvic floor? Do you have a lumpy- bumpy scar, and tension in your abdominals? Do you have back pain, sciatica, pelvic pain or hip pain? Do you have the sensation that something isn’t quite right but you can’t really explain what you are feeling? Well, if you answered yes to any of the aforementioned questions then that is your body sending you a message that you are not yet recovered and you may need to slow down and get some help. At Dalhousie Health & Wellness we can offer the help you need. We can help you return safely to physical activity, and get your body functioning to tolerate the demands of your busy mom life!
The First 6-10 Weeks Postpartum
It is essential to tap into your deep core muscles for a smooth c-section recovery. Dr. Hodges works alongside women and teaches them how to properly engage their core. This proper core engagement involves diaphragmatic breath and the ability to connect to ones pelvic floor muscles, as well as low back stabilizing muscles. Activating these muscles in the first 6-10 weeks postpartum can help retrain the mind-body connection between the deep core and pelvic floor that can be diminished with pregnancy, during delivery and with a c-section. Dr. Hodges works closely with women before, during and after delivery to ensure a proper functioning core and pelvic floor.
Abdominal Massage and Scar Tissue Release
Many midwives and OBGYN’s refer to Dalhousie Health & Wellness for postpartum C-section and scar tissue care to help speed up healing. Once you are cleared by your OBGYN or midwives, massage therapy and gentle cupping are wonderful techniques to help release the scar tissue and help speed up the healing of the scar. Our Registered Massage Therapist Suzanne Hamm can preform gentle abdominal massage to help with c-section and postpartum recovery. Dr. Meredith Hodges can preform gentle cupping, acupuncture and abdominal release techniques to assist in your recovery.
Easing Back into Activity
Most women are eager to get back to physical activity and loose their baby weight. This unnecessary pressure to rush recovery can have lifelong negative consequences. It is an essential part of the postpartum recovery (c-section or vaginal birth) to slow down, listen to the signs that the body is giving and gently ease back into activity with the advice of your Dalhousie Health & Wellness healthcare team. If you are really eager to get back to physical activity sooner than later, we advise that you work with a trained postpartum specialist. Dr. Hodges has taken extensive training in postpartum recovery and uses Pilates to rehabilitate the postpartum body. Dr. Hodges works one-on-one with women to retrain the breath, core and pelvic floor. Weather you seek help from our highly trained postpartum team at Dalhousie Health & Wellness or prefer to allow the body to recover naturally, make sure you take time, slow down and be patient. Your body will heal on its own timeline with a little patience and TLC.
Pilates is one of the best exercises you can do while pregnant. It is a low impact workout that focuses on strengthening your core and the muscles needed during your pregnancy and labour, as well as postnatal care for mothers. Pilates encourages deep breathing, a mind-body connection, and movement to help alleviate physical discomfort and stress. This alternative therapy promotes a safe and optimal delivery and quicker recovery post pregnancy.
Kineso-Tape application for pregnancy related low back pain and pelvic pain.
Patients often ask me “Doc, What Does Tape Do?” The tape I use at Dalhousie Health & Wellness is called kineso-tape, it’s flexible, breathable and moves with you. Because of these qualities, this type of taping technique is called a functional taping.
A functional taping is applied to help control pain, reduce swelling, and help proper muscle functioning.
How Does the Tape Control Pain?
The tape stimulates receptors on the skin, in turn calming the body’s pain response. The best way I can explain this is with an example of bumping your elbow. When you hit your funny bone, your first reaction is to rub your elbow. The rubbing action on the skin helps the pain go away. The tape acts in the same way as your hand rubbing your elbow, and the receptors in the skin are stimulated which help to control pain.
How Does the Tape Reduce Swelling?
The tape reduces swelling by lifting the tissues in a wave-like pattern. This wave-like pattern creates more space in the surrounding tissues and allows movement of inflammation and swelling to drain out of the injured area. There are many different applications for inflammation control. Your doctor will determine the type of taping to help reduce your swelling.
How Does the Tape Help Proper Muscle Functioning?
The tape itself can create support and take a load off overtaxed muscles. This can allow overworked muscles to relax a little, and let others help out. Your chiropractor is trained to determine which muscles need a little help, and where the tape can best be applied.
What’s in The Tape?
After I explain how the kineso-Tape works, I often still get the question “Doc, What’s in The Tape?” Although it does seem to work like magic, kineso-Tape doesn’t have any mystical powers. There are no special ingredients just plain old stretchy, breathable and movable tape. At Dalhousie Health & Wellness your chiropractor has taken special training in the application of kineso-Tape.