The Importance of Pelvic Floor Exercises for Overactive Bladder Management
We all know the importance of staying in shape and keeping our hearts healthy. However, it is surprisingly less well-known that certain exercises can help manage an overactive bladder by strengthening the pelvic floor muscles. A strong pelvic floor is essential to maintaining control over bladder and rectum functions, reducing the risk of incontinence and improving core strength. Pelvic floor exercises are highly recommended as they are both effective and do not come with the potential side effects of medication.
Before embarking on a pelvic floor exercise regimen, it is essential to first know how to do a Kegel exercise. To do a Kegel, one simply needs to tense and then release the muscles used to stop urination. It is that simple! There are several specific pelvic floor exercises that can help manage an overactive bladder, such as the four exercises detailed below.
The legs-up-the-wall exercise can help stretch and relax your pelvic muscles while simultaneously providing a little pressure on the diaphragm to promote deep breathing. To do this exercise, sit facing a wall and lie down with your legs up and your back and head flat on the floor. Let your arms rest beside you, palms facing upward, and close your eyes while breathing deeply and allowing your pelvic muscles to relax.
Wall squats target the pelvic muscles and are an excellent exercise for strengthening both the bladder function and the upper legs. Begin by standing with your back against a wall and then lower yourself into a seated position, keeping your back straight and your feet flat on the floor. Hold this position for ten seconds before returning to a standing position and relaxing your muscles. Repeat this exercise ten times.
The pillow stretch exercise is a great way to relax and stretch your pelvic muscles while also strengthening them. Begin by lying on your back with a rolled-up towel or pillow placed under your lower back. Stretch your arms out to your sides or above your head, and breathe deeply as you relax your pelvic muscles. Continue this exercise for ten to fifteen minutes.
The bridge exercise is another effective way to strengthen your pelvic muscles while isolating them from the rest of your body. Begin by lying on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat on the floor. Take a deep breath and then use your pelvic muscles to raise your hips off the floor. Hold this position for ten seconds before slowly lowering your hips back down and relaxing your muscles again. Repeat this exercise ten times.
It is important to note that these exercises should be conducted only after consulting with a physician, especially if you have an existing medical condition or are pregnant. Moreover, you should always take into account your current physical limitations and start slowly, building up the intensity and duration of each exercise over time as your strength and endurance increase.
Pelvic floor exercises are a simple and effective way to manage an overactive bladder and improve your overall health. These exercises not only help to prevent incontinence but also provide added benefit in terms of core strength and a general sense of physical well-being. Incorporate these exercises into your daily routine, and you will soon see the positive effects on bladder function and beyond.