Over the seven years I have been working as a postnatal doula I have seen the rise and rise of post-pregnancy belly-binding. They are sometimes called wrapping, binders or girdles, but they are all basically the same concept, and one that has been used in postpartum care for thousands of years.
If you are pregnant for the first time- yay!!! I didn't do this after my first was born, and I really wish I'd known about it earlier. My second baby was 4.4kg (thank-you-very-much) and my belly button has never been the same since!
When I was looking for some extra support after my second was born I found that daily belly-binding helped me feel comfortable and relaxed. It felt like it held my organs in place whilst my abdominal muscles recovered.
Best of all...
I felt supported and hugged - and in fact gentle pressure increases oxytocin! Gentle, even pressure has been used for a variety of anxiety-reducing applications including autistic children, lonely dogs and premature babies.
Belly-binding can help you feel more safe and secure, both physically and emotionally.
Will belly-binding help me lose the baby weight?
The first myth we need to clear up is that belly-binding does not help you lose weight - don't believe any internet marketing or gimmicky product with that claim. There is no evidence at all, and believe me - I've looked.
Will Belly-binding give me rock hard abs?
Sadly belly binding is no replacement for lazy muscles. What it can do is support your posture, lower back and internal organs, whilst you slowly build up your abs, pelvic floor and core strength. Plus did I mention it feels really, really good?
Think of it as a place-holder for the first six weeks before your return to exercise. You'll still need to learn how to breathe and hold your posture and engage your pelvic floor, with or without belly-binding.
If you want a complete holistic postpartum recovery program I highly recommend MuTu. Wendy is mum and personal trainer and she delivers some awesome and very popular online programs for new mums here.
WHY SHOULD I WRAP MY BELLY?
There are plenty of other reasons to wrap your beautiful belly after childbirth, some of which I mentioned earlier. You can read more about the benefits of post-pregnancy belly binding here, and learn more about traditional postpartum practises in the second video of my free pregnancy program - it will prepare you for peace and joy in motherhood.
What if I have a caesarian?
No matter how which way your baby comes out, your abdominal muscles, pelvic floor and lower back often need a little extra help after childbirth. I have many clients who have used belly binding after all kinds of births with great results.
Where do I buy belly-binding?
As a mother of two and a postpartum doula I have spent many years researching and trying out all the various options available. And this simple tubular bandage that you can slip into in seconds and wear discretely under your clothing is the best of the lot!
Since you can't buy the sizes you need for pregnancy and postpartum at the chemist, I buy wholesale and cut to length. I actually only did it for clients, but so many people ask me about it that I now have created video tutorials and written guides about it too.
I love belly-binding! Have you tried it? I would love to know how you felt in the comments and let me know if you have any questions.