While pregnancy puts a strain on your entire body, your back and stomach muscles take the brunt of the abuse. After delivery, some of the back pain is usually alleviated, but you are still carrying around extra weight. An elasticized postpartum support belt can support your back and stomach muscles. Wearing a support can also help temporarily flatten your stomach enough to fit into your pre-pregnancy wardrobe again.
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Things you need
- Cloth measuring tape
Check with your doctor to make sure it is safe for you to wear a postpartum support belt. Women who have just given birth need abdominal support, but the belt may provide too much pressure immediately after delivery. Wearing a support belt too soon may also cause pain from rubbing against stitches from a C-section.
Use a soft measuring tape to measure around the smallest area of your waist. A support belt will not be effective if you wear one that is too large, and it will be uncomfortable if it is too small. Each size has a range of 6 to 8 inches.
Place the support belt on your lower back, holding an end in each of your hands.
Stretch the belt gently around to your stomach. You may want to use one hand at a time.
Attach the postpartum support belt with the hook-and-loop closure. This should be right in line with your belly button. The top of the belt should be at your waist and the bottom should hit just below your hips.
Adjust the tension in the belt by pulling more tightly or loosening it before you close the hook and loop tape. Keep adjusting the tension as you begin to lose baby weight.
Wear your postpartum support belt consistently as you ease back into your daily activities. It can be especially helpful if you need to do a lot of standing or walking soon after the birth of your baby.
Tips and warnings
- Hand wash your postpartum support belt, using warm water and a mild soap. Allow the belt to air dry to reduce shrinkage.
- Do not expect a postpartum support belt to tighten your stomach muscles without any effort on your part. When you wear a support, your stomach is held in and will convey the appearance of a flat stomach. Exercise (approved by your doctor) and time will help you lose weight and tone your stomach.