Incontinence is a common issue that affects millions of people worldwide. It can be a result of various factors, including age, childbirth, surgery, or certain medical conditions. However, there's good news - strengthening your pelvic floor through targeted exercises can significantly improve incontinence symptoms. This article will guide you through these exercises and explain how an enterostomal therapist can help manage related conditions like stoma and wound care.
Incontinence refers to the loss of control over urination or defecation. It's often a symptom of weakened pelvic floor muscles. These muscles support the bladder and bowel, and when they're strong, they prevent leaks.
The Role of the Pelvic Floor
The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that form a supportive sling in the lower pelvis. They hold the bladder, bowel, and in women, the uterus. When these muscles are weak, it can lead to incontinence.
Exercises to Strengthen the Pelvic Floor
Here are some exercises that can help strengthen your pelvic floor:
Kegel Exercises: These exercises involve contracting and relaxing the pelvic floor muscles. To do a Kegel exercise, imagine you're trying to stop the flow of urine or hold in gas. Hold the contraction for 5 seconds, then relax for 5 seconds. Repeat this 10 times, three times a day.
Squats: Squats can also help strengthen the pelvic floor. Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, bend your knees and lower your body as if sitting down. Then, rise back up. Repeat this 10 times, three times a day.
Bridge: Lie on your back with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Lift your hips off the floor, hold for a few seconds, then lower back down. Repeat this 10 times, three times a day.
The Role of an Enterostomal Therapist
An enterostomal therapist is a healthcare professional who specializes in the care of individuals with stomas, wounds, incontinence, and other conditions that require specialized care and knowledge. They can provide guidance on the proper care of a stoma, help manage wounds, and offer advice and support for managing incontinence.
Incontinence can be a challenging condition to live with, but with the right exercises and professional guidance, it can be managed effectively. Remember, it's essential to consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new exercise regimen. An enterostomal therapist can provide valuable support and advice in this journey towards improved pelvic health.