Both men and women have a pelvic floor (PF). It is a thin layer of muscle and connective tissue stretching from the pubic bone to the tailbone. As the name rightly suggests it is the ‘floor’ for your pelvic organs. The PF supports the organs and helps control passing of urine and bowel movements. It contracts when you sneeze, cough or strain and with this helps to prevent leakage. It also supports (and can improve) sexual function.
So why and how can such an important muscle become weak? During pregnancy and childbirth there can be damage to the muscle. Aging can decrease muscle tone. Long-term straining due to constipation or obesity can cause damage. It is also suggested that the changes in hormones associated with menopause can cause weakening (there is still debate and insufficient evidence on this).
Like all muscles, the pelvic floor needs to be exercised to work well. As you can see from all the reasons for weakening – it is exercises that need to be done throughout your lifetime. Current guidance suggests 10 x 10 second squeezes, followed by 10 quick hold and relax. HOWEVER this is not always the answer for everyone. Some people can have a weak contraction and are not able to manage the above OR you can have overactivity that needs a different approach. It is important to know that leaking is not just something that you have to live and there is help out there!
For more information visit this website!