I recently put together a power point presentation on this topic and presented it to female patients in our office and the feedback was so great that I will be giving this presentation again at a local OBGYN office next spring. Here are some highlights of the talk.
My goals for the talk were to teach women about the ramifications of having a weak pelvic floor and to teach them how to strengthen it.
The pelvic floor refers to the many pelvic muscles and ligaments that line the floor of your pelvis. These muscles can become very weak like a sagging hammock with pregnancy, childbirth, obesity, chronic coughing, chronic constipation, age, repetitive heavy lifting or any genetic predisposition that weakens connective tissue. If your pelvic floor is too weak, it could lead to a host of problems such as urine leakage when coughing, sneezing or laughing, pelvic pain or pressure, urine, fecal or gas incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse and sexual dysfunction. The good news is that many of these issues can be alleviated or even reversed with strengthening your pelvic floor.
Two wonderful resources are a book entitled FemFusion for Intimacy by Brianne Grogan and a DVD by physical therapist Tasha Mulligan called Hab It: Pelvic Floor. Daily Kegel exercises and 20 minute pelvic floor exercises 3 times per week is what is recommended to strengthen a weak pelvic floor.
In my talk I went over some of these exercises and taught women how to perform a proper Kegel. If you need guidance with the pelvic floor exercises a physical therapist, such as Jennifer Darby in Brewster, New York at 845-279-5111 is trained in this. If you do not know if you are doing a Kegel properly consult your OBGYN or midwife and they will guide you.