Having strong pelvic floor muscles means you’ll be less likely to have issues like stress incontinence after your baby’s born.
Your pelvic floor muscles:
They form a broad supportive sling from the front to the back of your pelvis.
Your pelvic floor muscles support your growing baby during your pregnancy. They then stretch during labour. This can make them weaker and they may not work as well as they did before your baby was born.
Weaker pelvic floor muscles can cause:
Exercising these muscles can make them stronger, and you’ll be less likely to have issues like stress incontinence after your baby’s born.
You can do pelvic floor exercises anywhere and no one will know.
You might have heard you can do pelvic floor exercises while you’re passing urine. This can stop you from emptying your bladder properly, so don’t do them when you’re on the toilet.
A pelvic floor muscle contraction is a squeeze and lift feeling, closing and drawing up the back and front passages.
To do this exercise:
Don’t clench your buttocks, hold your breath or squeeze your legs together when you’re doing them.
For slow contractions:
For quick contractions:
Do some slowly and some quickly to get the most out of these exercises.
Now’s a great time to start these exercises if you haven’t been doing them.
Try to get into the habit of doing these exercises every day. To make it easier, try to link them with something you do regularly, such as brushing your teeth or watching TV.
If you find them difficult or you need advice, speak to your midwife or an obstetric physiotherapist, or contact your local maternity hospital.
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2 November 2023