Postpartum Bengkung Belly Binding
Any woman who has given birth can tell you that the feeling of a squishy belly after several months of a taught firm belly feels a little weird. All of those months of your baby and uterus growing, your skin stretching, and your hips widening takes a toll on your body. Those first few days postpartum are something to get used to. We don’t have the same balance, as now we don’t have the extra weight pulling us forward. We don’t sleep in the same positions because now that baby isn’t in the way but we can’t go back to our pre pregnancy positions either because the uterus still needs to shrink down. Something we don’t often think about though is the baby, uterus, skin, and hips aren’t the only parts undergoing a transformation. The muscles are also equally affected. The great news is, belly binding can help!
WHAT IS POSTPARTUM BELLY BINDING?
Bengkung belly binding can be an important part of recovering from childbirth. Using cotton, muslin, or silk fabric your abdomen is wrapped snuggly in order to support your body’s natural healing process. Belly binding has traditionally been used to provide the postpartum body the support to assist the abdominal wall muscle retraction, improves posture, support loosened ligaments and provide support to the torso while vital organs return to their pre-pregnancy size and position. Wrapping can be done over your clothes or under using an under wrap.
WHAT ARE THE BENEFITS OF BELLY BINDING?
There are several benefits of postpartum belly binding, including:
Repairing the diastasis recti – According to the Mayo Clinic, during pregnancy, the growing uterus stretches the muscles in the abdomen. This can cause the two large parallel bands of muscles that meet in the middle of the abdomen to separate — a condition called diastasis recti or diastasis recti abdominis. The Malaysian technique of Bengkung binding is helpful in bringing those bands of muscles back together in order for the Linea Alba, or connective tissue, to strengthen and support the muscles more effectively.
Pelvic Support – In addition to supporting the abdominal area, belly binding also provides support for your pelvic area. During childbirth, a woman’s body produces something called Relaxin, which helps her body physically become looser and more flexible in order to birth her baby. When binding postpartum, we take advantage of the Relaxin in the body by putting pressure on the hips and pelvis to go back to its pre pregnancy state more easily. This also helps to firm and support the areas that are still loose from pregnancy as the Relaxin reduces in the body.
Lower back support – The Bengkung method of binding is also helpful in supporting the lower back. It is well known that the abdominal muscles have a direct relationship to the back muscles. According to www.spine-health.com“…The abdominal muscles and back muscles are key components of [a] muscular network, and provide the strength to keep the body upright and for movement. When these core muscles are in poor condition, additional stress is applied to the spine as it supports the body, and back injury or back pain is more likely”. With the abdominal support, the back is supported as well. Having lower back support helps to reduce strain and improves posture.
Emotional/Spiritual benefits – Many women enjoy the modesty of being able to breastfeed without the worry of their belly being exposed. Women also enjoy the process of taking care of their bodies and being able to focus on their recovery and the healing process. They are able to really take that time out each day for self-care and get in touch with their new self and their new role as a mother. Many women use binding as a spiritual or symbolic closure of their pregnancy; especially if they didn’t receive the birth they envisioned.
WHY SHOULDN’T I SIMPLY BUY A BELLY BAND FROM THE STORE?
The Bengkung method of belly binding is incredibly adaptable to your specific body type, size, and shape. It uses cotton, muslin, or silk fabric and as your postpartum body changes and shrinks down you can simply rewrap yourself to accommodate your transforming body. Those standard belly bands also do not support your hips and ribs and can bulky and uncomfortable.
Belly wraps can be beautiful colors and designs and look gorgeous when worn.
WHEN SHOULD I GET WRAPPED?
It is recommended that for a vaginal delivery, you be wrapped within the first week postpartum and if you have had a cesarean 4-6 weeks postpartum with a doctor’s approval. You will continue to wrap for each day, for about 10 hours, up to around the 40 day mark.
WHAT IS INCLUDED IN MY FEE?
A handmade 100% cotton muslin Bengkung wrap with under wrap. 1 binding session is $150 with personal instruction on how to wrap yourself. Additional sessions are also available to purchase for $65 each.