How Long Do I Need to Wear My Diastasis Rehab Splint®?
This is a common question that I get asked all the time! The answer is “as long as it takes to close your diastasis.” How long it takes to close your diastasis depends on your commitment to the program ( wearing the splint all the time and no exercise the first six weeks) and the severity of your diastasis. If you have an umbilical hernia or the “half football like bulge” when you lift your shoulders off the floor you have a severe diastasis and it may take up to 9 months to a year. You will need to use two hands to check your diastasis when you have a severe diastasis. However, you will see the healing process working within three weeks. That is why it is so important to take photos of your belly from the front and the side. When you see the changes you will be motivated to continue the program.
Many people think that they can stop wearing it after six weeks or after 18 weeks. This is not true.
The Tupler Technique® is all about healing the connective tissue. Wearing the splint is about putting the connective tissue in a better “position” to heal. The connective tissue has to be in this narrow position ALL the time. It is similar to the process of healing a broken bone. The cast continuously keeps the bones in the proper position to heal. The difference is that just wearing the splint will not close your diastasis. You must do the other 3 steps of the program. The Tupler Technique® exercises will bring blood flow to the connective tissue helping it heal. Preventing intra-abdominal force on the connective tissue is also part of allowing the connective tissue to heal. That is another reason why it is so important to do the exercises to strengthen the transverse muscle. You use this muscle with every move you make. So it needs to be strong so you can engage it when doing activities of daily living (getting up and down) with body functions (sneezing, coughing, going to the bathroom) and then in week six while exercising.
How will you know it is closed? If you have been checking yourself from the start you will feel the connective tissue becoming shallower. As the connective tissue becomes shallower the muscles will come together. The shallower the connective tissue the stronger it becomes. When you put your fingers in your belly button and your fingers cannot go very deep you will know it is closed!