Updated: Oct 20, 2021
Kegels. That is all people generally hear about the pelvic floor muscles.
I want to share a few times when kegels are NOT appropriate. Many times kegels may help, but there are a few times when you really should be mindful of how you do kegels or maybe you need to stop doing them altogether.
I know, everyone is telling you to kegel away during pregnancy and make sure your pelvic floor is strong to support that growing baby. There is some validity to this, however you need to be very mindful of HOW you are doing kegels when you are pregnant because when it comes time to have a vaginal birth you don't want a tight pelvic floor. You actually need your pelvic floor muscles to relax and stretch in order to birth vaginally. Kegels can be done during pregnancy, but I recommend doing them slowly and intentionally so you feel the contraction of the muscle and you feel the relaxing of the muscle, that is what you need for birth. A strong pelvic floor may be helpful during pregnancy but it doesn't matter how strong those muscles are if they can't relax to let the baby come through.
2. Pelvic Pain
Anyone, including men, with pelvic pain should not be doing kegels. Usually if you have any form of pelvic pain you also have tight pelvic floor muscles. The body naturally responds to pain by tightening the muscles around it to protect that area. That is a normal response, but we don't want to perpetuate the tightness by constantly tightening the muscles more. You need to break that cycle otherwise the pain will lead to more tightness will lead to more pain, etc, so doing more exercises that tighten the muscles will not help the pain.
3. Urinary leakage
I know this may seem counter intuitive, but not everyone who has urine leakage needs to do more kegels. For some people with urine leakage kegels may help strengthen the pelvic floor muscles and help stop the leakage. For others, you may have tight pelvic floor muscles that prevent the bladder from filling up completely. Also, muscles that are constantly tight can become weak over time. If kegels aren't helping your bladder leakage getting a pelvic floor exam can give you the information you need to figure out the cause and treat the cause of the leakage. It isn't always just weak pelvic floor muscles.
Kegels can be good when done in the appropriate situation, but they don't fix everything and sometimes can make conditions worse. If you want more guidance in your situation set up a phone call and let's see how we can help. If you are ready to schedule your first appointment you can do that through the online booking tab.