Kegel Exercises for Women to Overcome Urinary Incontinence
by MedPlus Team, June 10, 2019
Kegel exercises for women were introduced by Dr. Arnold Kegel, an American Gynecologist. Kegel exercises, also familiar as pelvic floor exercises, involve constantly contracting and relaxing the muscles that form a woman’s pelvic floor.
Why is it Important for Women to Perform Kegel Exercises
Usually, pelvic floor muscles support the pelvic organs which include uterus, bladder, and rectum. During pregnancy, childbirth, aging, and weight gain, these pelvic muscles tend to lose their physical strength and become weak in most women. Hence, the muscles may no longer support the internal organs leading to leakage of urine a.k.a. urinary incontinence – while sneezing, coughing, running, laughing, and leakage of feces as well.
This is why experts recommend Kegel Exercises for women every day to overcome these problems. These help women strengthen the pelvic floor muscles and support the bladder, uterus, rectum, and small intestine. Thus relieves or prevents physical problems in women such as discussed above – urine leakage (or urine incontinence), gas and feces leakage.
How to Perform Kegel Exercise
Performing this exercise is a simple and easy way which can be done anywhere without being noticed by others. Before starting the exercise pretend that you are urinating and then immediately hold it in the midstream. Repeat the same few times. Below mentioned are the step by step guidelines:
1. To start the exercise, make sure to empty your bladder.
2. Lie down or sit and then tighten/hold your pelvic floor muscles and count 3 to 5 numbers.
3. Now, relax the muscles and again count 3 to 5 numbers.
4. Repeat the same procedure 10 times in the morning, afternoon and evening.
Who can Perform Kegel Exercise?
The reasons for people who are suffering from Urinary Incontinence and Feces leakage include:
1. Pregnancy and during the labor (normal delivery)
2. Weight gain/Overweight
3. Cesarean section
4. Aging process
5. Frequently sneezing, coughing, and laughing
6. Weight lifting, jumping, running, and other exercises
All women with the above conditions can practice Kegel exercise at home.
When Can I Expect Good Results by Performing Kegel Exercise?
By doing these exercises every day, some women may notice the results within 4-6 weeks based on their individual capacity and they may also observe improved signs include:
1. Reduced frequent visits to the washroom
2. Reduced leakage of urine
3. Ability to hold the urine for a longer time
For a few women, to observe the above results, it may take a few more months. However, be patient, don’t get frustrated rather perform the Kegel women exercise daily and concentrate on it while doing.
When Should I stop performing the Kegel exercises?
If you notice any of the below-mentioned problems, it is recommended that you consult your doctor:
1. Pain while performing this exercise
2. Abnormal difficulty to perform
3. Difficulty in holding pelvic floor muscles
4. Concerns related to bladder, bowel, and sexual function