I am talking to the c-section mamas today!! Lets talk about your scar!
I ended up having an emergency c-section with Rad after 26 hours of labor. I went into the hospital with the possibility of having a c-section literally not even crossing my mind! After my very hard recovery, I was left with a scar, very low and basically no information about ways to mobilize that area. The Dr.’s I had were great, but I was given no information about moving my scar around to make sure that the scar tissue didn’t start creating problems.
So many women after having a c-section are left with weak abdominals, a pulling for tugging sensation when standing or reaching for things, painful sex, and the pooch near near the scar. These women are told this is something they have to live with and its “just what happens”.
Well I beg to differ.
The scar goes much deeper than what you see on the surface.
And it can cause an aray of issues. You might not have attributed your scar to these symptoms. If you have any of the following, you may need to start moving that scar around.
- Pain/sensitivity at and around the scar.
- Reduced mobility and elasticity; making bending forward and lifting uncomfortable.
- Feeling like that area is being pulled/tugged on, when standing up straight and reaching overhead, which can affect posture.
- Low back pain from compromised/weakened abdominal muscles.
- Myofascial trigger points in abdominal muscles that can refer pain to the urethra and clitoris.
- Superficial nerve irritation surrounding the area of the scar.
- Urinary urgency and frequency.
Your tissue is usually laying under the skin all nice and pretty. When scar tissue forms, the tissue becomes messing and can attach to things in the body trying to make the area stronger but it can lead to some of the issues above.
Massaging the scar tissue and surrounding area can break up those adhesions that are attaching to surrounds areas of the scar sight. If you never break up those connections, it can cause nerve pain and reduced blood flow as well.
You should be able to start massaging the area once the scar is healed. This usually happens around 6-8 weeks post delivery. Everyone is different and you will want to be cleared by your Dr. before you start.
I know for me, my scar was HYPERSENSITIVE! OH MY GOODNESS, it did not feel good to touch anywhere near my scar, like my pants couldn’t touch it or if I brushed up against a table, it hurt! You will need to desensitize the area. Try brushing on or around your scar with a soft towel, your fingers.
Then you will want to work in all directions, in circles, up and down, side to side, along the scar, above and below with your two fingers. Later once more mobile and once comfortable, you can try spreading the scar apart, or picking the scar up and twisting slightly. This will seem aggressive if you haven’t been working on the previous progressions.
You will also want to press deeper to get past the muscles and to massage the organs as the adhesions can attach to ovaries and the bladder as well.
Your best bet is to see a pelvic floor specialist so you can have your scar observed by someone who has seen a lot of them! They can also help with prolapse, diastasis recti and other core dysfunctions. I will attach a video of my own scar and some demo of how to start moving it around!
I hope this was helpful and if possible, please see a pelvic floor physical therapist!
Sharon, et al. “C-Section Scar Problems and Solutions from a Pelvic Floor Physical Therapist.” Image, 7 Sept. 2017, https://pelvicpainrehab.com/pregnancy-and-postpartum-pelvic-health/4873/c-section-scar-problems-and-solutions-from-a-pelvic-floor-physical-therapist/.