Workout After Pregnancy – Regain Your Confidence

If you thought delivering a baby is the only labor pain you go through, think again! Workout after pregnancy is essential as a woman gains an average of 15 to 30 pounds during pregnancy period.

Why Workout?

Workouts after pregnancy help a woman to regain her original weight and boost self-esteem. It also helps her to strengthen her back muscles that bore the brunt of her labor. Moreover, her pelvic and abdominal muscles would need to be toned up as well. Most importantly, a woman needs to increase her stamina and energy levels so that she is fit enough to take care of her baby, her home and her family.

How Soon Can Postpartum Workouts Start?

Workout after pregnancy is usually recommended six weeks after normal vaginal delivery. In the meantime, one can go for light exercises such as walking, stretching and deep breathing that prepare your joints and ligaments. These exercises can gradually be increased in intensity as the baby grows and so does the mother’s stamina.

In cases where the woman had to undergo a C-section, she is advised to go easy on her workouts and enable her body to heal better by walking around at an easy pace.

Losing The Extra Baggage

Weight loss after pregnancy is a slow and gradual process. However, resorting to crash diets or rapid weight-loss programs could result in unwanted complications. It is more important to be healthy than slim in the initial postpartum months as your baby needs you the most. Pregnancy weight gain can be shed within six to eight months after childbirth. A gradual workout routine combined with a healthy diet is the best way to go about it.

Special Postpartum Workouts

Kegel workouts are special exercises designed to firm up the pelvic floor muscles and can be performed even during the pregnancy period to aid a smoother delivery. Kegel exercises are also useful in treating urinary incontinence resulting out of prolonged childbirth labor.

Kegel workouts can be done anywhere and anytime. The pelvic floor muscles comprise a ‘hammock’ of muscles that hold the pelvic organs in place. Kegel workouts involve tightening and relaxing of these muscles.

Workouts And Breastfeeding

Workouts after pregnancy do not affect the quantity or quality of breast milk in any way. However, it is advisable to feed the baby before a workout as exercising supposedly increases lactic acid in the breast milk, which the baby may not like. In addition, feeding the baby prior to a workout relaxes the breasts and makes them lighter.

Workout With Care

Follow these tips to ensure a successful postpartum workout experience.

Consult your gynecologist for a well-planned workout plan.
Wear a sports bra to avoid breast pain during workouts.
Take the help of a certified fitness expert before you perform any exercises for the first time.
Do not strain any muscles while exercising.
Drink plenty of water and fluids to avoid dehydration.
Do not compromise on your daily-recommended calorie intake.

Workouts after pregnancy help a woman to restore her strength and energy after childbirth. Workouts after pregnancy should be gradual and moderate. Kegel exercises help in tightening the pelvic muscles that become weak during delivery. Weight loss after pregnancy could be very easy if you do proper exercises after pregnancy under the guidance of your fitness trainer or a qualified therapist. If you want to regain your shape fast after pregnancy, make sure that you take adequate precautions during your pregnancy period to avoid excessive pregnancy weight gain

Urinary Incontinence Overcoming an Often Overlooked Side-Effect of Childbirth or Menopause

Childbirth and menopause are two phenomena that many women will face in their lives. Unfortunately, having children or going through menopause can create temporary or long-term issues with urinary incontinence. If you’ve had a baby, you’ve no doubt been told to do Kegel exercises, which strengthen the pubococcygeus muscles that form the pelvic floor between the legs. Toning these muscles helps to prevent the onset of incontinence; yet many women skip these exercises altogether or do them incorrectly.

Women going through menopause can experience urinary incontinence due to a lack of estrogen. Once a woman stops menstruating, her body ceases to make estrogen. Estrogen is, in part, responsible for keeping the lining of the bladder and urethra plump and healthy. A lack of estrogen can be responsible for a weakening of the bladder control muscles.

Pressure from coughing, sneezing, or lifting can push urine past the grips of a weakened muscle. Leakage of this type is known as stress incontinence. It is one of the most common types of bladder control problems experienced by older women. If you are experiencing urinary incontinence, you should not self-diagnose your problem. It is important to see a doctor first.

Your obstetrician-gynecologist or medical doctor should first perform a physical exam. Your doctor should be certain that your bladder empties properly, that you don’t have a urinary tract infection (UTI) and that you know how to properly contract your pelvic floor or Kegel muscles.

After your doctor has determined that there is no physical deformity, complication or infection, you must next determine which course of action to take. There are three common ways to treat urinary incontinence:

— learning behavioral techniques — how to control the muscles of the bladder and the sphincter to prevent leakage.

— taking medication to replace hormones, stop abnormal bladder muscle contractions or tighten sphincter muscles.

— performing Kegel exercises to work the pelvic muscles.

In most cases, the most effective and beneficial course of action is to work the Kegel muscles back in to shape. But how is one to do that?

Over 50 years ago, Dr. Arnold Kegel discovered that by clenching and relaxing the muscles used to stop the flow of urine, the pelvic floor (or Kegel) muscles could be strengthened and rehabilitated. Because of this discovery, most people have heard of “Kegel exercises,” but what most people do not know is that Dr. Kegel incorporated a device known as the “Kegel Perineometer” that was inserted into the vaginal cavity to measure the contractions and provide feedback to the patient. In this way, the patient was able to monitor the quality of the exercises and be certain that they were being done correctly.

Most women who just “do” kegels have minimal results due to the lack of feedback. There is nothing to tell them if they are doing the exercise properly. The most common problem associated with doing Kegel exercises without feedback is the accidental contraction of the abdominal muscles at the same time as the pelvic floor muscles. When this occurs the abdominal muscles (which are bigger and stronger) push down on the pelvic floor and can actually make the problem worse.

Since it’s not likely that the typical family has a Kegel Perineometer lying around, what’s a woman to do? Fortunately there is a safe, affordable solution that has been used successfully by over 100,000 women to strengthen their Kegel muscles in the privacy of their own homes.

This device is known as The Kegelmaster. The Kegelmaster is a small, hinged device that is gently slipped three inches into the vagina. Once done, a safety knob is loosened allowing the small spring (or springs) inside to open the hinged device a few degrees. The woman will then squeeze her kegel muscles causing the device to close. The Kegelmaster’s two, flat internal surfaces close tightly against one another providing feedback to the user that the exercise has been done correctly and completely.

The Kegelmaster has four positions in which springs can be installed or moved. This allows the user to slowly increase the amount of resistance experienced during each exercise. Exercises can be completed in only a few minutes and results can be seen within a few days and improvement can continue over a few short months. No one should suffer needlessly from this embarrassing problem when a simple, affordable solution is so readily available.

Urinary Incontinence in Woman – Tips for Prevent Urinary Incontinence

Urinary Incontinence in Woman, women experience incontinence twice as often as men because the structure of female urinary tract, pregnancy, childbirth, and menopause. But it can happen to men too.

Causes of urinary incontinence:

Urinary incontinence is the uncontrollable excretions of urine. Urinary incontinence is not a natural part of aging. It is common in the elderly, especially women.

It is often temporary, and it almost always causes from an underlying medical condition such as urinary incontinence infection, constipation, vaginal imflammation in women, stroke, neurological injury, arthritis, and side effect from certain medicines. In these condition, it is only temporary and can be cured when these cause of urinary incontinence are treated.

However if your urinary incontinence symptoms still persist, after these temporary cause of urinary incontinence have been treated, it could be cause malfunction of the bladder such as nerve disorder, enlarged prostate in man, weak of pelvic floor or bladder muscles.

The best you should do is consult to your doctor if you are experiencing symptoms of urinary incontinence, so your doctor can determine your type and cause of incontinence and make the best plan for treatment.

Tips for Prevent Urinary Incontinence:

Here are some suggestions that may help you to prevent urinary incontinence by following the good habits:

– Drink 6-8 glasses of water daily unless your doctor advises you otherwise.

– Avoid or limit your intake of alcohol, carbonated drinks, and caffeinated drinks.

– Eat a balanced diet, so keep you healthy and a normal weight range.

– If you are over weight, try to lose weight because carrying extra weight also puts further stress on pelvic floor muscles.

– Enough of fiber in your diet so can prevent constipation.

– Do pelvic floor exercises or Kegel exercise regularly to help strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, which may help you to have a strong pelvic floor muscles.

– Good bladder habits such don’t holding back too long when your bladder is full or persistently emptying it when it is not.

There are some tips for prevent urinary incontinence by following the good habits in our lifestyle.

Remember if you suffer from urinary incontinence and if it affects your life, you should discuss the problem with your doctor, as it may be a symptom of underlying medical condition that requires treatment.

Understanding Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is the inability to control urine elimination. You may lose urine at times that you do not choose to do so. Urinary incontinence is more common in older people, but incontinence can be seen in children, adolescence and adults, both male and female, although more women seem to suffer from this embarrassing condition than men.

Incontinence is One of the main causes of elderly people being put into nursing homes, and this makes some people hide their condition rather than see a doctor to get help.

Types of urinary incontinence.

Stress Incontinence

This is the most common kind of urinary incontinence in women. Urine is passed when there is increased pressure on the bladder.This can happen as an involuntary action when you sneeze, cough, laugh, lift or exercise. Stress Incontinence is often seen in women who have had several normal childbirths and research shows it affects up to 50 percent of women. Stress urinary incontinence is not as common in men, but they can suffer from this condition especially if there is a history of prostate problems.

Urge incontinence

Urge incontinence involves a sudden need to urinate. This is followed by involuntary loss of urine before you can get to the toilet. Urge incontinence is most common in the elderly. It could also be caused by a kidney or bladder infection.

Overflow incontinence

Overflow incontinence is urine leakage that can occur when the bladder fails to empty properly, due to a blockage or weak bladder muscles. Overflow incontinence is not as common in women, although fibroid or ovarian tumors can be a cause. It occurs more often in older men where an enlarged prostate can be the problem. The urethra can become blocked by Urinary stones or tumors.

Functional incontinence

Functional incontinence occurs in people who have normal urinary control but can’t get to the toilet in time because their movement is slowed by age related problems like arthritis or other physical or mental disorders. Functional incontinence may occur after a major illness. It is also common in Older people in nursing homes and other institutions. Functional incontinence accounts for around 25% of incontinence in the residents of long-term care institutions.

Treatment

Treatment options vary, depending on the cause, type,and severity of incontinence you have.

The main categories of treatment for urinary incontinence are

Behavioral

Bladder retraining.

Devices

Vaginal cones. These are small weights that can be placed in a woman’s vagina to help train the pelvic floor muscles. Electronic devices use low-voltage electric current to stimulate and contract the correct group of muscles.

Medications

Anticholinergic medicines.

Surgery

If other treatments for urinary incontinence have failed, there are surgical operations that can be performed depending on each particular condition.

Pelvic Muscle Exercises or Kegel exercises help to make your pelvic muscles stronger. Kegel exercises have improved or cured urinary incontinence in many people. You can do these exercises any time, while sitting at your desk, in the car, doing the housework, etc. You need to be squeezing the right muscles, if in doubt your doctor can teach you the correct way to do the exercises.

Natural remedies should not be overlooked. N-Con Tonic is a 100% natural, safe and proven formula for urinary tract support.

It strengthens weak bladders and urinary tract tissues and prevents embarrassing and involuntary leaking. Assists with incontinence in the elderly and those with spinal cord injury, prevents leakage of urine when laughing, sneezing or coughing and Improves immune functioning to stop repeated infections.

There are other devices or products to help manage urinary incontinence. These include catheters, pelvic organ support devices, urethral inserts, external collection systems, and absorbent products. Speak to your doctor, he’ll recommend the right products for you.

For most people the symptom of incontinence is not an indication of a serious medical condition, however, early diagnosis of incontinence is extremely important so that any underlying problems that do exist can be treated accordingly.

The pelvic floor muscles

Moderate to severe cases of uterine prolapse may cause symptoms that include:

– A feeling of heaviness or pressure in the pelvis.

– Painful intercourse.

– Abdominal or lower back pain.

– Feeling something protruding, or the sensation that something is about to fall out of the vagina.

The Kegel exercise

Kegel, or pelvic muscle exercises are named after the doctor who popularized them, teaching women how to strengthen and tone these muscles, helping eliminate incontinence, and reducing the chances of a prolapsed uterus. 15 minutes each day of Kegel exercises can make a noticeable difference in bladder control as well as strengthening the pelvic muscles, which are like any other muscle in the body, needing exercise to stay strong.

To find the correct muscles, start out by trying to stop the flow of urine, you’ll know if you’ve found the right muscles if you are in fact able to stop urinating. Another method of locating the pelvic floor muscles is to lie down, insert a finger into the vagina, and again bear down again as if you were stopping the flow of urine. If you feel a tightening around your finger, you’ve found the pelvic floor muscles.

To do the Kegel exercise, begin by lying down, tightening the pelvic floor muscles, and then holding for a count of three to five seconds. Relax the muscles for another count of three to five, and then repeat the process over again for another set, doing the same thing three times a day. Remember to have patience, as it may take weeks or even months to notice a difference.

Your goal should be to gradually work your way up to 10 or 15 repetitions each time you exercise. Once you’ve mastered the practice lying down, try doing the exercises sitting down, and then while standing up, varying the position each time. Be careful not to tighten any other muscle group or hold your breath while doing Kegel exercises, particularly if you’re having problems with urinary incontinence. Putting pressure on the wrong group of muscles may cause extra stress on the bladder.

To avoid a prolapsed uterus:

– Do regular Kegel exercises.

– Maintain a regular, healthy weight.

– Practice proper lifting techniques and avoid straining.

– Control coughing by not smoking and treating chronic coughs and bronchitis.

– Have regular physical check-ups that include pelvic examinations.

– Older women with concerns may want to speak to their doctor about estrogen replacement therapy (ERT).

Sex And The Pelvic Floor – What’s Exercise Got To Do With It

The pelvic floor is a large hammock or sling of muscles stretching from side to side across the floor of the pelvis in both women and men. It is attached to the pubic bone in front, and to the tail end of the spine behind. The openings from the bladder, the bowels and, for women, the vagina, all pass through this hammock.

The correct anatomical name for these muscles are the pubococcygeus muscles, but nowadays they are more commonly called the pc muscles, or even more commonly, the pelvic floor muscles.

Sometimes they are referred to as a single muscle, but it is more actually more accurate to talk of them in the plural, as there are a number of muscle groups that together make up this muscle sling.

Many women are aware that they should exercise these muscles but very few do it regularly and successfully. Most women who have had children will have been advised on the importance of pelvic floor exercise to restore muscle tone after childbirth, and muscle strengthening was identified as an appropriate treatment for stress urinary incontinence back in the 1950s.

It was during the development of an exercise program for urinary incontinence that an interesting side effect was observed by Dr Arnold Kegel, the originator of these exercises. He claimed that women doing his exercises were finding it easier to reach more frequent and more intense orgasms.

To understand why, consider what happens in your body when you experience an orgasm:

Your heart pumps faster and your breathing gets heavier to fuel those tensing muscles.
Hormones are pumped round your brain and body, telling you this is enjoyable.
Blood is pumped to your genitals to create the tension that will ultimately trigger a pudendal reflex (muscular spasm of the genitals).
That reflex will result in your pelvic floor muscles contracting between five and 15 times at 0.8-second intervals, which is what we know as orgasm.
So when you consider that the essential experience of orgasm is focused on the pelvic floor muscles, it isn’t surprising that exercising and strengthening those muscles might make for more and better orgasms.

The association between strong pelvic muscles and improved sexual response and pleasure, led sex therapists to recommend pelvic floor exercises (or kegel exercises as they are known in the US) to clients, and earned them yet another name: “the love muscle”.

So how do these exercises help to increase sexual pleasure?

The pelvic floor muscles are directly responsible for the amount of sensation you feel during intercourse, and for the amount of grip felt by your partner. So although an exercise regime for these muscles has the same physiological benefits as exercising any other muscle, the spin-offs are much better.
Exercise improves muscle tone which means that the muscle is tighter, so is stretched more by an erect penis.
Strong, firm muscles have more nerve endings, and more nerve endings mean more sensations for you during sex.
Exercise improves circulation, and this is particular important for the smaller muscles of the pelvic floor, which are responsible for engorging the clitoris when you are aroused.
Rhythmic contractions of these muscles contribute to arousal and to many women’s ability to achieve orgasm. Many women report they are able to reach orgasm more easily, and that their orgasms are more powerful, after a pelvic exercise program.
So why wait to start exercising? It takes approximately 12 weeks of regular exercise to make a real difference, so start now, and within three months, a better sex life could be yours!

Pregnancy Trimester- Stages of Pregnancy For Mother And Fetus

Pregnancy trimesters are the three stages of the normal 40 weeks pregnancy divided into three months each. These stages of pregnancy are crucial both for the mother and for the child. The mother experiences many physical and emotional changes as she nurtures a new life inside her. Similarly the baby develops gradually in its first home-womb of the mother.

First Trimester Pregnancy

First pregnancy trimester is marked from conception to 12 or 14 weeks from the last normal menstrual cycle. During this stage a woman often experiences morning sickness (vomiting and nausea}, tiredness, tender breast and frequent urination. It is recommended to take small frequent meals to prevent nausea. You may have alternate periods of activity and rest. Walking is the best exercise at this stage.

Changes In Baby

The embryo’s eyes, ears, nose and digestive system begin to form in this stage of pregnancy. The heart starts beating. The embryo is about 2.5 cm long and weighs 2g.

Second Trimester Pregnancy

Beginning of the fourth month marks the second pregnancy trimester. At this stage of pregnancy, you may regain your lost energy as morning sickness disappears. You may notice increased vaginal discharge due to hormonal changes in body. Braxton Hicks contractions, which are contractions and relaxation of the uterus, which is often misunderstood as false labor contractions, are experienced. Low back pain and swelling of the feet and ankles may occur. Mild yogic exercises under the supervision of the trainer may help relieve the problem. Kegel exercise i.e. tightening the muscle around the vagina and anus should be done in this stage of pregnancy. This would tone and strengthen the pelvic muscles that take part during the labor contractions. Stretch marks-a great sign of worry for the-to-be moms may be visible. Avoid itching the abdominal area to reduce the chances of pregnancy stretch marks.

Changes In Baby

Moms can feel excited during this pregnancy trimester as the movements of the baby starts with the development of muscles. Fingernails and toenails appear and the heart is completely developed. A small amount of hair appears on the baby’s head, eyebrows and eyelashes emerge. Baby weighs about 300gm and is 10 inches long.

Third Trimester of Pregnancy

This is the last of the pregnancy trimesters that extends from 28 –40 weeks. The mothers may have sleepless nights thinking of the arrival of their newborn and of the pain they may undergo during child birth. Braxton Hicks contractions become intense in this stage of pregnancy. You may feel tired and short of breath due to increased growth of the fetus.

Changes In Baby

Baby attains its full size and weight at the end of this trimester, which is 16inches and 2100g for a healthy baby. The organs and systems are fully matured.

In the course of the three pregnancy trimesters, the baby grows from a fetus to a human with all its systems developed in miniature. This is the miracle of birth.

Pregnancy trimester is a period of three months. Pregnancy period for humans is divided into three trimesters of three month each. Each trimester of pregnancy corresponds to different stages of pregnancy. First Trimester Pregnancy is more eventful as it is the time when one witnesses early pregnancy symptoms such as morning sickness. Special care is needed in this stage of pregnancy

Pregnancy And Lower Back Pain – How You Can Cope

If you are pregnant, and have already begun to have noticeable lower back pain, talk to your obstetrician. You may be a candidate for chiropractic manipulation or physical therapy. The exercises described in this article should not be attempted by anyone who is already experiencing lower back pain.

Exercises Before You Become Pregnant
If you are not yet pregnant, you will help your body withstand the stresses of becoming pregnant by building up the muscles in your abdomen. The abdominal muscles are one of the main supports for the lower back; lower back pain can be directly connected to abdominal muscles which are not strong.

If you develop your abdominal muscles prior to you pregnancy, they will regain their much more quickly once you have delivered your baby. If your abdominal muscles regain their strength quickly, you will be reducing your risk of getting lower back pain following your pregnancy.

One effective exercise for toning your abdomen is to lie on your back on the floor, lift your legs into the air and do a bicycling motion. Another is to use a large balancing ball to do abdominal crunches.

Exercises If You Are Pregnant
Even if you have already become pregnant, you can still perform some abdominal exercises without worrying about harming either your baby or yourself. Reverse crunches, side crunches, and modified crunches, performed while leaning against a pile of pillows to keep you from lying flat are all abdominal strengthening techniques which will keep the weight of you extra pregnancy pounds from causing you lower back pain.

You can also wear low-heeled, comfortable shoes with plenty support throughout your pregnancy to relieve stress on your spinal column. And consider using a maternity support belt when you will be walking or standing for any length of time.

When your baby has been delivered, and your obstetrician has given you the all-clear, you can return to doing standard abdominal strengthening exercises. Even if you underwent delivery by Caesarean section, you can work on your abdominals as long as you doctor knows what you are doing and has okayed it. Exercises appropriate for women who have delivered by C-section include Kegel exercises and isometric gluteal and abdominal contractions.

Pelvic Floor Basics for Every Woman

The pelvic floor is a large hammock of muscles stretching from side to side across the floor of the pelvis. It is attached to your pubic bone in front, and to the tail end of your spine behind. The openings from your bladder, your bowels and your womb all pass through these muscles.

What does the pelvic floor do?

It supports your pelvic organs and the contents of your abdomen, especially when you are standing or exerting yourself.
It supports your bladder to help it stay closed. It actively squeezes when you cough or sneeze to help avoid leaking.
It is used to control wind and when “holding on” with your bowels.
It helps to increase sexual awareness both for yourself and your partner during sexual intercourse.
What weakens the pelvic floor muscles?

Pelvic floor muscles weaken for similar reasons to other muscles in our bodies: natural ageing and inactivity. But these particular muscles are also often weakened through hormonal changes in women’s bodies, and through pregnancy and childbirth. Factors such as being overweight, ongoing constipation and a chronic cough can put extra pressure on them and pelvic surgery can also have damaging effects.

Why are pelvic floor exercises (also known as Kegel exercises) important?

A poorly toned, weak pelvic floor will not do its job properly. Women with weak pelvic muscles often experience incontinence and reduced sexual response. But research has shown that these muscles respond to regular exercise. With regular exercise, it is possible for most women to reduce or completely overcome the symptoms of a weak pelvic floor, no matter what their age.

A regular exercise regime, introduced early in life, will also prevent many of the problems associated with weak pelvic floor muscles emerging later. It is never too early or too late to begin to exercise these important muscles.

A woman whose muscles are already badly weakened may need the advice of a health professional before embarking on an exercise program. But many women with milder symptoms prefer to try a simple exercise regime for themselves initially. Easy-to-use and affordable exercise aids can provide feedback on correct exercise technique and provide ongoing support.

How to do pelvic floor exercises (kegel exercises)

Slow contractions : Tighten the muscles around your back passage, vagina and front passage and lift up inside as if trying to stop passing wind and urine at the same time. It is very easy to bring other, irrelevant muscles into play, so try to isolate your pelvic floor muscles as much as possible by not pulling in your tummy, not squeezing your legs together, not tightening your buttocks and not holding your breath.

The effort should be coming from the pelvic floor muscles themselves.

For how many seconds can you hold the muscles tight? Try holding it as long and as hard as you can. Build up to a maximum of 10 seconds. Rest for 4 seconds and then repeat the contraction as many times as you can up to a maximum of 10 contractions.

Try to do these exercises in a slow and controlled way with a rest of 4 seconds between each muscle contraction. Practise your maximum number of held contractions (up to 10) about six times each day.

Quick contractions : The ability to work these muscles quickly helps them react to sudden stresses from coughing, laughing or exercise. Practise some quick contractions, drawing in the pelvic floor and holding for just one second before releasing the muscles. Do these steadily, aiming for a strong muscle tightening with each contraction up to a maximum of 10 times.

Try to do one set of slow contractions followed by one set of quick contractions six times each day.

If you do these exercises regularly, you will see optimum results within 3 to 6 months, but you should continue them for life to keep your pelvic floor muscles as fit as possible.

Kegel Exercising for Bladder Control and Enhanced Sexual Pleasure

Kegel exercises strengthen the muscles of the pelvic floor, thereby improving the urethra and/or rectal sphincter function. A regular resistance Kegel exercise program with proper technique will help decrease or eliminate stress incontinence and in many cases, enhance sexual satisfaction. This article provides the steps on “How To Kegel” and will help you understand how Kegel exercise can help you make positive differences in your life.

STEP 1 Find the right muscle to work. Tightening the right muscles on the pelvic floor is important for successful Kegel exercise. One approach to find the pelvic floor muscles is to try and stop the flow of urine midstream. Try this several times so you become familiar with the contraction feeling. Avoid contracting your abdominal, thigh or buttock muscle groups while performing the exercise.

STEP 2 Prepare for Kegel exercise. Begin your Kegel exercise regime with an empty bladder. When first starting out, take the time to perform the exercise in a quiet place where you can relax and concentrate. Try to exercise in different positions each time you perform your Kegels. For example, exercise while sitting, standing and lying. The variety of positions with the exercise will enhance full muscle strengthening.

STEP 3 Perform the Kegel exercise. Pull in the pelvic muscles and hold the contraction for a count of 3-5 seconds then relax for a count of 3-5 seconds. Repeat this process 10-15 times each time you exercise. Your Kegel exercises should be performed every day, at least three times a day.

STEP 4 Advance your Kegel program. Once you are comfortable with Kegel exercising, increase the tightening of the pelvic floor muscles and hold for a count of 10 seconds, relaxing for a count of 10. Perform 10 rounds of exercises, three times a day. Don’t lose hope! Be encouraged! Kegels can take up to 4-6 weeks to notice improvement and for some, up to 3 months to see a significant change. Remember, Kegel exercises have been shown to be 50-80% effective in improving urinary incontinence.

TIPS

It’s important to take care of yourself if you are experiencing stress incontinence. Don’t be afraid to talk with your healthcare provider about it to make sure there isn’t any underlying medical condition bringing it on. This type of incontinence is very common following childbirth as the stress of the birth may have weakened or damaged the pelvic floor.

If doing Kegels on your own is too much of a challenge, consider products that will help you perform the exercises efficiently. They work and take hardly any time out of your busy day.

Hold your squeeze until after you sneeze! Doing so will help you protect your pelvic floor muscles from further damage.

The feeling of discomfort in your abdomen or back while performing Kegel exercises is not normal. If you experience this discomfort you are probably performing the exercise incorrectly. Relax and concentrate just the pelvic floor muscles.

When performed correctly, Kegel exercises have been shown to be 50-80% effective in improving urinary incontinence. Once you have the hang of Kegel’s and see the improvement, you will find yourself performing them while in line at a store, working on your computer, driving or working outdoors!