The below blog was written by Dr Louise Wiseman.
Women are complex.
Not just our minds! Our bodies are extremely complex, like men, only different. There are a large number of organs in a small space in our pelvis. The bladder, the womb, ovaries and intestines are all within this bony space sitting above the pelvic floor which is a muscle group across the area, shaped like a bowl. In a woman’s lifetime she may go through pregnancy, childbirth, heavy lifting, sports, weight gain and the delicate pelvic organs are all supported by this muscle group. When things are stressed too much and when the muscle strength declines with age and hormonal change, there may be a shift in the anatomy and things don’t end up exactly where they used to be.
The Importance of Kegel Exercises
Pelvic floor exercises are mentioned to us at different stages of our lives and most of do not take notice until something goes wrong. A leak of urine on coughing/sneezing/laughing (stress incontinence), desperation to run to the loo quick (urge incontinence), problems related to opening your bowels, or a dragging sensation below as though things aren’t in the right place and one can immediately panic and feel completely desperate and lonely.
Getting Help and Helping Yourself
At this stage It is a good idea to visit your GP who will examine you, exclude anything else going on such as infection or pathology, and give you a diagnosis. If they do not need to refer you to a specialist they may talk to you about physiotherapy or doing Kegel (pelvic floor) exercises yourself. These can be difficult to perform at first, much helped by explanation from a Physio. You need to know you are doing them correctly and with adequate rest for the muscle to relax in between.
If you want to help yourself and you have no contraindications after checking with your doctor (pelvic cancer, pacemaker, recent surgery or pregnancy) then I cannot recommend a machine like Kegel8 Ultra 20 highly enough. There are different internal probes for different uses, clearly explained on the website and if you do not feel using a probe is right for you, you can try the electrodes that are placed on your back- a little like a TENS machine given in the hospital during labour. Many of the probes can be used while you keep active. At first you will probably want to use it reclining peacefully on your bed, following the instructions and finding the correct frequency and programme that works for you.
Kegel8 is for ALL Women
There are bountiful reviews on the Kegel8 website where women explain how this has helped them with incontinence of different types, night time weeing, prolapse and the quality of their sex life. These are all topics that women can be reluctant to share with their partner/friends/doctor. It is so intensely personal. We need to talk about these things to help women get better. Don’t suffer in silence.
I used a Kegel8 toner a few years ago after my second emergency caesarean, when I damaged my pelvic floor by excessive lifting- it meant in a few weeks I could return to my normal exercise regime and carry on living my life.
You may need to use a Kegel8 toner for a few weeks at the beginning and then just for maintenance. They recommend trying it for 12 weeks to give yourself the best chance but you may notice results in one or two weeks, it can be that quick. That is the beauty of it and all in the comfort and discretion of your own home. We need to start the conversation with our daughters and each other, to encourage awareness to strengthen the pelvic floor to prevent these conditions and possibly reduce the need for future surgery.
I think what upsets me the most as a doctor, is ladies not having access or knowledge of what can help them, hence my book I am currently working on ‘Your Best Life- A Doctor’s Secret Guide To Radiant Health Over 40’. In this I write about all aspects of female health and also interview some wonderful prolific ladies about what works for them. I am all about prevention of disease, making yourself feel and look fantastic and female empowerment. Kegel8 can certainly give women power back over their symptoms.
My words never replace or supercede a conversation with your own doctor.
This post is based on my honest opinion and not sponsored in any way.
You can find more of Dr Louise here: