Pregnancy and the birth of your child is one of the most important events that will happen in your life. Childbirth comes in many ways, and sometimes a set of circumstances creates the necessity of a Cesarian section birth. A C-section is when an incision is made through the mother’s abdomen and uterus to deliver the baby.
When this becomes necessary, the procedure takes place, you and your newborn child are united, and soon the incision in your abdomen begins to heal – as you are quickly spun into motherhood.
There are some important details I want to share with you about what a scar is, and how it works, as well as how to avoid and prevent any possible issues or problems that may come up down the road.
First off it’s important to know that all people scar differently. Many of you will have an incision that heals into a soft, mobile scar that moves will with your body, and causes no problem at any time in your life.
Some of you will create an excessive amount of scar tissue in response to an incision – you may already know if this sounds like you: you may have had previous injuries which resulted in thick, tough scars causing pulling and tethering forces in your body. If your body tends to heal this way, it’s important to work with your scar to soften it, to make it maliable, and mobile in relation to the rest of your body.
Otherwise the result may be problematic for you in subtle, seemingly unrelated ways, in the years and decades to come – in 2 ways:
First a thickened and tough area will gather tissue into itself over time, causing your posture to slowly be pulled forward – possibly leading to chronic shoulder / neck issues, and headaches.
Second, since freedom of a structure affects it’s function, you may lose optimal function of the structures nearby the area of the scar. This can include changed bladder function such as incontinence, and excessive urination; or IBS symptoms, constipation, and diarrhea – as your colon and bladder share space in your pelvic bowl, and overly tough and thickened scars cause 3 dimensional pulling and tethering in the general area over time.
These are symptoms to be aware of and consider with your own body. As mentioned, the way people scar is individual, and can be seen much like a spectrum. If your body’s healing process lies on the end of the spectrum which correlates with excessive-production of thick and dense scar tissue, you might want to find ways to soften and mobilize your C-section scar – whether it’s been 6 weeks, or 10 years – some gentle mobilization can be highly effective and beneficial for you body both in terms of postural alignment, and bodily function.
Here are some ways to address tough scar tissue:
1) Use a castor oil poultice (click “castor oil” for instructions)
3) Use manual therapy: have a Registered Massage Therapist trained in fascial techniques manually mobilize your scar for you, as well as teach you gentle techniques you can use at home. Scar tissue is in essence fascia tissue that is less vascularized, less hydrated, and less elastic – but more collagen-based. Manual fascial release allows re-hydration, as well as mobilization of the collagen tissue, and re-activation of the ground substance the collagen sits in, creating more mobile and more softened scar tissue.
I hope this is of interest and helpful! If you have a friend who has experienced a c-section birth with possible postural and functional issues, do pass this on.
We have both Vancouver RMT’s and Vancouver Naturpaths at Broadway Wellness trained to work with this particular set of circumstances. Don’t hesitate to call us at 604.732.5222, or email if you have any questions or wish to book an appointment. You can now visit our website and book online your self when preferred.
Monica Cleland RMT, BA