Kegel Exercises Help Maintain Urinary Tract Function
Kegel exercises are designed specifically to exercise and strengthen all of the muscles along the pelvic floor. These muscles are responsible for the proper placement and functioning of may of your internal organs including your bladder, bowels, and uterus if you are a woman. Because of pregnancy and childbirth, typically women are more in tune with these muscles than men. And for these same reasons, pregnancy and childbirth, women are more likely to suffer damaged or weakened pelvic floor muscles, which can in turn lead to bladder weakness.
If you are not sure exactly where your pelvic floor muscles are or how to give them a good workout, it is easy enough to learn. To find this muscle group, simply stem the flow of urine next time you are going to the bathroom. If you can successfully stop urinating mid stream, then you have must found your pelvic floor muscles. As you tighten the muscles of the pelvic floor, you will feel them move up at the same time. Then as you release your muscles to continue the flow of urine, the muscles will feel like they are moving downward. Now that you have found your pelvic floor muscles, do not continue to interrupt the flow of urine when you are going to the bathroom, because repeated interrupts while emptying the bladder can also weaken internal organs.
Once the muscles are identified, though, you can begin to exercise them. Begin by sitting in a chair, because you will feel the muscle movement better, and tighten the pelvic floor muscles, just as you did when going to the bathroom, and hold them tense for five seconds. Then release the muscle gradually. Repeat this process slowly every morning, noon and night. As your muscles get stronger, you can do these exercises while standing as well. Over time, increase the number of repetitions that you do, and hold them for a longer duration. Keep all of your other muscles relaxed and breath easily while you are doing your Kegel exercises. If you just get in the habit of doing these exercises, you can do them any time and any place. This simple, healthy habit pays off big by keeping muscles viable and supportive, which then keeps your bowels and bladder healthy and functioning properly.
Filed under: Incontinence