Belly binding after birth is becoming more and more popular, and although the this practice has been around for thousands of years, we in the United States are just hearing about it - mainly thanks to the advertising and marketing of company’s such as Belly Bandit®. Hospitals are handing out various types of binds, and word is getting around about the benefits and wonderful support that belly binding can provide.
Since there are so many methods and binds out there, I thought I’d show a comparison between Bengkung belly binding and the more modern binds sold online and in stores. I’ll save a post about the benefits of belly binding for another day (or you can read the cliff notes here). Let’s face it, you probably wouldn’t be here if you weren’t curious, or weren’t considering using a wrap of some kind. You’re just trying to figure out what kind is best! So without further ado, let’s get into the differences between Bengkung Belly Binding vs other belly binding wraps.
Even, 360 degree support:
Bengkung belly binding provides even support from your pelvic bone to your breasts. It can provide the same even amount of support from top to bottom and from back to front . Alternatively, it can be adjusted to be looser at some points and tighter on other spots. Can you get that with the store kind? No, it just isn’t going to be possible. Even if it did compare in this department, there is still so much more to consider!
No Velcro issues:
Sometimes Velcro breaks down after multiple uses. You may find the tight fit that you felt at the beginning is starting to wane. Next thing you know, you’re looking for the duct tape to hold it all together. The material that I use for Bengkung belly binding is strong and durable. It holds up wash after wash, and never loses it’s ability to do it’s job. Each wrap is hemmed and surged on all edges to prevent frays. Most importantly, the surged edges DO NOT bunch up or dig into your skin. Comfort is a pretty big deal when you have liquids poring out of every orifice of your body.
Here in Texas, in the summer it’s HOT and HUMID. As I look at the various binds out there on the market, most have a few things in common. Elastic, and Velcro. No matter how soft and breathable they claim for their bind to be, there certainly is a lot of materials needed to keep the wrap fastened and taught. (Velcro, spandex, elastic, whatever). None of these materials allow the skin to breathe nearly as well as a giant piece of cotton, muslin or batik fabric. Postpartum moms are already sweating after they give birth, no need to turn the faucet on any higher!
Speaking of materials, sweat and heat - what about washing that thing? The ones that you can purchase at the store are almost always going to instruct to hand wash. Yes, HAND WASH, not even use your washer on the ‘hand wash’ setting! It can take 12 hours or so to dry. They encourage purchasing two of them so you can wear one, while the other one is out of commission. You can purchase two Bengkung belly wraps if you’d like, but the one that I provide, is machine washable and most can be washed and dried over night when you aren’t using it anyway. You are already sleep deprived, are you sure you want to add hand washing to your postpartum schedule? (I know you are thinking this could be a job for your mother-in-law, but even she deserves the luxury of using a washing machine)!
A little TLC:
When you get your belly bind, it’s not going to ask you how you are doing. It can’t wipe away a tear, while you vomit out how crazy your mother-in-law is making you. It can’t provide you with local resources on breastfeeding, support groups, baby wearing, or whatever you might need. Some women just need to get it all out, and some women just want to do the wrap! Either way, you are getting support. (Slight pun intended). When I come to your home you may just want to get down to business, learn how to wrap and be done. I can do that! I’ll do it as quick as possible, and chat as little as possible. I can be out the door in less than an hour. Some moms would like me to spend more time while they chat and ask lots of questions. They want to talk about their new baby, maybe even ask a question or two about breastfeeding or ask how to use their new pump. As a childbirth educator, a doula, a mom to six, and a breastfeeding counselor, I just might have some answers! I’ll be happy to help you with a breastfeeding session while I’m there. The store bought wraps just don’t compare to a walking birth, postpartum and breastfeeding encyclopedia.
P.S, if your wrap *is* talking to you, you either haven’t slept for a week or you need to contact your health care provider.
So there you have it. You’re a smart consumer! Which one provides you with the best physical and emotional support - while also supporting your local business?