Abdominal binders support the abdominal wall. They are also called bariatric belts, belly binders, or abdominal belts. They can help reduce body weight. Not only that, but abdominal binders are also good for preventing some of the obesity-related problems.
What are all the uses of abdominal binders?
These are essentially belts, but broad belts. They encircle your abdomen and cover most of it. They are made for both men and women and come in different sizes. They are all made to support and put continuous mild pressure on the abdomen/tummy. 
What materials are used to make abdominal binders?
They are made by using the elastic material. The pressure exerted on the belly can be regulated by controlling the way you wear them (tight or loose). These binders use either hooks or Velcro. However, we can say that Velcro is the best option. Velcro provides better control over the pressure binder exerts. It can adjust accordingly to the shape of the belly. 
Some binders are created for medical use and may have additional features for holding tubing and so on.
An abdominal binder is used to either get rid of belly fat, support it, or in some cases; it is used to fasten the recovery after surgical treatment.
Most commonly a doctor may ask to wear an abdominal binder after:
- Major abdominal surgery, where there is a large incision on the abdominal wall
- Weight loss or bariatric surgery
- Cesarean section (surgical childbirth) and or giving birth
- Gynecological surgeries like hysterectomy
- Tummy tuck – a kind of plastic surgery procedure to remove excess of fat
- In some cases, they may help after spinal surgery
What are the expected benefits from an abdominal binder?
It would depend on the purpose and what type of abdominal binder you buy. Bariatric abdominal binders are specifically created to loosen your belly fat (for weight loss program). They are comfortable to wear all day long. They act delicately, help redistribute body fat, forcing the body to burn more fat for energy needs. 
Even though bariatric abdominal binders do not reduce weight, it still helps tighten the belly. Thus it may improve looks when worn below the clothes.
Abdominal binders are also used for medical reasons, often after the surgery to:
- Assist in faster healing by supporting the abdominal wall
- Reduce symptoms of pain and discomfort
- Help protect the abdominal wall from accidental damage, in the stages when it is still not strong enough
- Help breathe sufficiently
- Improve the quality of sleep
- The pressure of abdominal binders also helps reduce swelling
Some people or doctors may say that there is not enough evidence in favor of abdominal binders. However, it must be understood that binders are not medications, they are health supporting devices.
It means that using them alone would not do wonders. Abdominal binders only help reduce body weight or assist in healing when other steps and precautions are taken in conjunction.
There is enough scientific confidence that abdominal binders can be used to help reduce body weight. When used for medical reasons they reduce emotional stress, reduce pain, increase mobility.
Binders also help reduce the risk of some of the complications after the surgery. They lessen the accumulation of fluid in the abdominal cavity.
What are the other uses of abdominal binders?
They are not only used for weight loss or after surgery. Some people have so-called orthostatic hypotension. It means that they tend to blackout if they stand up suddenly. Abdominal binders are the first line of treatment for them, as the increase abdominal pressure, and improve circulation to the brain. 
Abdominal wall has an essential role in preventing recurrent lower back aches. Some people may need abdominal binders to support not just abdomen, but a spine too. Wearing them while lifting heavy things may help prevent spinal pains.
Abdominal binders are also useful after childbirth. By increasing abdominal pressure, they help to contract uterus faster; they may help vagina regain its prior shape and elasticity. They also help to reduce the loose tummy skin.
How long and when your wear abdominal binders would depend on many factors. If you are wearing them to reduce belly fat, you may need to use them for months or years. You may gradually tighten them for better effect (it is like using a corset, but is more comfortable and can be used by both the genders).
When used for medical reasons, it is better to ask a doctor about when to wear it, and how long.
In conclusion, abdominal binders have numerous uses. They are a safe way to trim your belly, improve looks. They are equally suitable for faster postoperative recovery. They can also serve to support your spine health.