Having a dent in your belly can be a real pain. It looks terrible and is difficult to get rid of. So, what causes this dent in the stomach? And how to treat this stomach dent? Well, this article is all about these details.
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So, what is a dent on side of stomach? It’s an abnormal indentation or depression in the anterior wall of the abdomen. It looks almost like the dent on a car, hence the name.
The area of the abdomen around the dent is raised. The dent itself is abnormally depressed. The dent can have a sharp or a blunt margin.
No matter what type of a dent you may have, it is bothersome. Such an abnormally depressed dent doesn’t look good at all. It also makes wearing tight clothes difficult.
Where Are Stomach Dents Located?
Dents in the stomach can be located almost anywhere. However, if the dent is due to a particular condition, it may have a specific location. Some of the common locations are:
- The dent may be located around the middle of the stomach or abdomen. In this case, it is located around the umbilicus. The size of these dents varies according to cause.
- The indent may also be in the upper abdomen. This looks like a depressed region right above the umbilicus.
- A stomach dent on the sides is also possible. In this case, it generally is located on the sides of the abs. If the dent is uniform and bilateral, it may be due to sudden expansion of the rectus muscles.
- The dent may be located in the underbelly. The abdomen above such a dent seems to be bloated. This dent may even be located beneath the belly button.
What is The Reason for Stomach Dent?
To understand the reason for this dent, we have to understand the abdomen. More precisely, we have to understand the layers of the front of the core. Before asking ‘why does my stomach have a dent in the middle, let’s check the layers of the stomach.
Layers of the Anterior Abdomen
Your belly is made up of a few layers in front. The abdomen is hollow to fit the organs inside. It also has to support the organs as well. Again, there should be room for expansion as well.
The abdominal wall performs all of these functions very well. The layers which help perform these functions are:
This is the outermost layer, as you’d expect. The skin of the abdomen is much like the skin of the other parts. It has two layers, an outer epidermis and an inner dermis. The dermis contains some fat tissue.
But the epidermis forms the outermost layer. It contains hair follicles and sweat glands.
This is the layer immediately underneath the skin. It is also called the subcutaneous layer. It also has two parts. The outer part is the fatty layer. It is the thickest layer that contains fat.
The inner layer is tough and membranous. This layer consists of tough fibrous tissue.
Beneath the superficial fascia is the muscle layer. It consists of a few muscles you’re familiar with.
The outermost muscle is the external oblique. Beneath this muscle is the internal obliques. These muscles form what we know to be the ‘obliques.’ The muscle beneath the obliques is the transversus abdominis.
In the middle of the abdominal wall is another muscle. It is called the rectus abdominis. This muscle forms the ‘abs.’ Any issues with this layer can end up in a stomach dent.
The rectus muscles are separated in the middle by the linea alba. It is a thin fibrous linear structure. It runs from the bottom of the sternum to the pubic bone.
The muscle layer is thick or thin, depending on the individual. If you work out a lot, this layer will be thicker. Vice versa, if you’re not very active, this layer will be thinner.
This layer consists of a fibrous layer of connective tissue. It is a thin membrane overlying the body cavity. Underneath is the peritoneum, a membrane covering the organs.
Causes of a Dent in the Stomach
Now we can delve deeper into the causes of a dip in the stomach. If any layer of the abdomen gets thin at a point, it makes a dent. However, there may also be even more specific causes leading to the dents. Some of them are:
The most common cause for abnormal indentation is garments. If you wear tight clothes often, then you may have these dents. This is more so if you have to wear the clothes as a uniform. Stomach indent from pants is quite common.
This is a condition that affects the rectus abdominis (abs) muscle. Here, the separation between the two recti muscles is widened. As we’ve seen, the linea alba is supposed to be a thin line. In this disease, it becomes wider and weaker in the middle.
So, portions of the organs protrude out from the weaker part. However, below this region, the recti and linea alba are normal. So, the portion immediately below the area of weakness seems like a dent.
Slim and fit people can have dent due to diastasis recti as well. However, in this case, the dent is in the middle of the abdomen. The region of the separation of the recti is where the dent appears. This is more so in muscular and fit people.
They include poor posture, back pain, irregular swelling, dent, etc.
The most common cause of diastasis recti is pregnancy. There is a rapid expansion of the abdominal wall due to pregnancy. So, the recti get separated in the middle due to increased pressure in a pregnant stomach dent.
The risk is even more in the case of twins or larger babies. Dent in the stomach due to pregnancy is generally below the belly button. And it may look like a vertical indent under belly button.
Diastasis recti can affect men as well. Men who work out too much are at dire risk of getting stomach dent above belly button. Doing too much heavy lifting can cause this indent in stomach above belly button. Weights put too much strain on the abdominal wall. The sudden and excessive pressure causes separation of the recti muscles.
This condition rarely occurs in people who gain or lose weight too fast.
People who give insulin injections sometimes suffer from lower stomach dent. In this case, the dent is located at the injection site. There has been some concern regarding this. People think it’s because of synthetic insulin.
However, it is due to local reactions due to the injection. There is atrophy of the fat at the region of the injection site. That’s what causes the dent-like appearance.
Many people may have a dent in their stomach without a particular cause. It may be congenital, that is, from birth, or acquired. This may be exacerbated by weight gain or weight loss.
This type of dent occurs due to atrophy and fibrosis. For unclear reasons, portions of the abdominal wall undergo atrophy. It means that the layers shrink, especially the layer of fat cells. This process is accompanied by thinning of the dermis layer of the skin. Then, there is fibrosis in that region. This causes further contraction at that portion of the abdomen. So, it gets even more dented.
How to Get Rid of Stomach Dent?
Now you know all about the dent in the stomach. But how to get rid of it? The solution is not so straightforward. It depends upon the cause of the dent.
The first thing to do is to consult with your doctor. They can find out the cause of your dent. Then, they can provide you with the appropriate treatment. Some lifestyle changes are also necessary to keep this problem at bay.
The methods below are helpful if you have a dent in your stomach.
If you have diastasis recti, then this is the only method for complete treatment. In this surgery, the surgeon strengthens the weakened abdominal wall. There are several surgical approaches available. You and your doctor can select whichever method is best suited for your case.
The outlook of surgery is generally outstanding. There are minimal complications. It doesn’t involve any delicate or essential structures. However, there may be a collection of fluid under the skin. But that too can be resolved.
If the cause is due to fat atrophy and fibrosis, the scar needs to be released. This, too, is done by surgery. This has to be combined with liposuction and other body contouring surgery. Then it will be effective.
Lifestyle changes are necessary to minimize the dent in the stomach. They might not completely make the dent go away. But they will do their part in making it less prominent. Some changes you can do are:
Regular exercise can help. Training your cores and abdominal muscles will strengthen your abdomen. A firmer abdomen is less likely to have a dent. These exercises are also helpful if you have diastasis recti causing a dent in stomach after pregnancy.
These exercises have to be done in proper form to be of help. Thus, it is best to consult with a professional trainer. They can help you exercise in appropriate conditions.
You also have to be careful about exercises, especially weight lifting. You have to make a proper workout routine. You also have to make sure that you’re not over-exerting yourself. That way, you can take care of the layers of your abdomen.
Controlling what you eat will also go a long way to properly shaping your body. Dents in the stomach are much less prominent if you have a fit body. Shedding fat is always a healthy lifestyle choice to make.
You can try reducing refined sugar, saturated fat, and oils. You also have to increase polyunsaturated fats, fruits, and vegetables. These changes will also prevent heart diseases, high blood pressure, diabetes, etc. So, it’s always a good idea to try them out.
You also have to take care of your abdomen. You shouldn’t put too much strain on it. Treating conditions like constipation is also necessary. You should try to avoid anything which raises the abdominal pressure too much.
If you’re taking insulin, it might be a good idea to talk to your physician. Chances are, your dent is due to the local action of the insulin injection. Changing the site of injection or even the type of insulin can help.
Changing Your Clothes
As we’ve said earlier, your stomach dent can be because of tight clothes. In that case, the most obvious solution is to avoid tight clothes. Your belly can heal itself stomach indent from pants, although it will take time.
What does it mean when you have a dent in your stomach?
A dent in your stomach might mean a lot of things. It can be due to genetic reasons, diastasis recti, or other conditions affecting the abdominal wall.
How do you get rid of a dip in your stomach?
With surgery and necessary lifestyle changes, you can get rid of the dip in your stomach. Doctors around the world recommend that you make changes in your lifestyle before considering surgery.
Why does my pregnant belly have a dent in the middle?
The most common reason for a dent in the middle of the belly during pregnancy is diastasis recti. If you see something like a dent during pregnancy, call your doctor immediately.
A stomach dent is undesirable for anyone. But the solution to this problem isn’t easy. Sometimes, it might never go away. However, it is possible to get rid of in most cases with surgery and lifestyle changes.