File this under "things they don't tell you...but should."
So I'm sitting in my Wednesday Mommy and Me class trying to be all social post baby and it's Postpartum Health Day. A tiny woman joins our circle and introduces herself as Dr. Whitney Sippl, a women’s health physical therapist. She talks about kegels (which I never do) and pelvic floor health, we briefly go over postpartum sex (Oliver Fox is being super cute and since hubby and I haven't had any problems I let myself be distracted by him) and then she sparks my interest...by giving me the heebie jeebies.
Managing scar tissue.
**I'll focus more on c-section though she goes over perineal also
After being cut into a bodies natural reaction is to heal itself by whatever means necessary, right? So our skin and tissue, all organized in layers, often stick together in very unorganized directions during this healing process. This basically causes adhesions (bands of scar tissue) and adhesions are the leading cause of lower back and pelvic pain, cause they're so sticky they end up adhering to other tissues in the body. They can also be the cause of discomfort during sex and they give you that lovely "shelf" appearance over your belly.
So when should you be starting these massages?
After your doctor gives you the all clear for sex, you're good to go for scar tissue massage too! That's usually your 6 week appointment! I was in week 8 and no one had talked to me about this?
So Whitney says to start by getting accustomed to touching your scar. Laying a hand against it, running a finger back and forth along the length of the scar. The first time I did this at home I cried, labor and delivery was so difficult and I had just realized I was touching my sons birth hole for the first time. It was a weird sensation.
I also still feel very little from where my scar is up to my bellybutton. The area is still numb, and sometimes tingly. As someone who loves science and medicine, I was quite surprised how uncomfortable I was with my own scar.
So then you move into massaging the scar back and forth across the scar, diagonals, circles, etc. I am now a pro at this part.
Then you're supposed to try to lift the scar up away from the underlying tissue...Guys, my scar is so sunken in...this seems an impossible feat.
Eventually you're supposed to move into lifting it and moving it in all directions and rolling it between your fingers. Yeah...we are definitely not there yet.
How many of your doctors talked to you about scar tissue management at your six week follow up? (Or about any postnatal care?)
ONLINE Postnatal Rejuvenation Class:
This class will discuss ways to heal and get your body back after your baby is born; goes over Diastasis Recti, safe abdominal exercises, scar tissue management, sex after birth, posture and body mechanics, etc.