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Snapback Pressure: An Unreasonable Expectation to Return to Pre-pregnancy Bodies

Snapback Pressure

Snapback pressure is a damaging expectation that makes many new mothers experience postpartum stress. This article is for you if you are facing additional emotional distress because of postpartum body image issues.

We will help you understand how your body changes after childbirth to hopefully ease your mind into accepting your new body!

What is snapback pressure?

Snapback pressure is a term that refers to the societal expectation for women to return to their pre-baby bodies quickly and easily after giving birth. This pressure can come from various sources, including friends, family, and the media. It can be intense and damaging for new mothers. Many people believe that women should be able to snap back to their pre-baby bodies quickly, often without considering the realities of pregnancy and childbirth.

How does the body change during pregnancy?

The truth is that pregnancy and childbirth are major physical and emotional events that can have a lasting impact on a woman’s body. The body undergoes numerous changes during pregnancy, including weight gain, stretched skin, and the production of a hormone called relaxin, which helps to relax and loosen the joints and ligaments in preparation for childbirth.

Here are a few statistics to help you understand just how common it is for women to experience major physical discomfort during and after pregnancy:

Over 90% of first-time mothers experience pelvic organ prolapse. It’s a condition in which one of the organs in your pelvic region slips down into your vaginal cavity. Over 33% of women face inconsistencies in urinating. It can be caused by scar tissue, nerve damage, or a tight pelvic floor.

Around 60% of women face diastasis recti. It’s a medical problem that’s caused by abdominal muscles that haven’t quite grown back after they invaginated to make room for your growing belly. This makes the belly look bulging and can be a source of physical discomfort. It can also make walking and lifting painful. These changes can take time to reverse, and it is normal for a woman’s body to return to its pre-pregnancy state.

Emotional changes during and after pregnancy

In addition to the physical changes that a woman’s body goes through during pregnancy, emotional and psychological factors can also impact the postpartum period. Many women experience sadness, anxiety, and exhaustion after giving birth, which can make it difficult for them to focus on their physical appearance. Moreover, new mothers often have a lot of other things to worry about, such as caring for a newborn, adjusting to life as a parent, and getting enough sleep, making it difficult to prioritize their self-care.

Sources of snapback pressure

Despite these realities, there is still significant pressure for women to snap back to their pre-baby bodies quickly. This pressure can come from various sources, including social media, where images of celebrities with seemingly perfect postpartum bodies can create unrealistic expectations for women.

It can also come from friends and family members who may comment about a woman’s appearance or offer unsolicited advice on losing weight after pregnancy.

How can snapback pressure affect new mothers?

This snapback pressure can damage new mothers, leading to feelings of inadequacy, self-doubt, and even body shaming. It can also harm a woman’s physical and mental health, as it can lead to unhealthy weight loss practices, such as crash dieting or over-exercising, which can have negative consequences on both the mother and the baby.

How to combat snapback pressure?

To combat snapback pressure, it is important for women to focus on their own health and well-being rather than trying to meet societal expectations.

It is also important for friends and family members to be supportive and understanding of the challenges that new mothers face rather than adding to the pressure. Finally, the media can play a role in reducing snapback pressure by promoting a more realistic and healthier image of postpartum bodies.

An insight from mamahood

In conclusion, snapback pressure is a harmful societal expectation that can have a negative impact on new mothers. It is important for women to focus on their own health and well-being rather than trying to meet unrealistic expectations and for friends and family members to be supportive and understanding.

Our References

  • Durnea, C. M., Khashan, A. S., Kenny, L. C., Durnea, U. A., Smyth, M. M., & O’Reilly, B. A. (2014). Prevalence, etiology and risk factors of pelvic organ prolapse in premenopausal primiparous women. International urogynecology journal, 25(11), 1463-1470.
  • Wuytack, F., Moran, P., Daly, D., & Begley, C. (2022). Is there an association between parity and urinary incontinence in women during pregnancy and the first year postpartum?: A systematic review and meta‐analysis. Neurourology and Urodynamics, 41(1), 54-90.
  • Sułkowski, L., Matyja, A., Osuch, C., & Matyja, M. (2022). Diastasis recti abdominis (DRA): review of risk factors, diagnostic methods, conservative and surgical treatment. Clinical and Experimental Obstetrics & Gynecology, 49(5), 111.

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