What Are Kegel Exercises?

Kegel exercises, or Kegels, are a way to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles. The pelvic floor muscles support the bladder, uterus, rectum, and small intestine. 

As we get older, these muscles lose strength and could cause a number of urological conditions. But even though Kegels are used to prevent conditions later in life, our team at Affiliated Urologists recommend them to support treatments for prolapse, urgency, frequency, and urinary, urge, and stress incontinence. This exercise is also highly recommended for pregnant women preparing for labor.

Kegel exercises are great for both men and women. For women, there are benefits before and after pregnancy: before pregnancy, the muscles are made stronger to reduce pain during childbirth; and after, this exercise can be used after giving birth to control the bladder after the pelvic floor muscles have been stretched. Men may use Kegels as a way of treating erectile or ejaculation problems. For the most part, though, men and women use Kegels to treat urinary incontinence (when urine accidentally escapes either due to urgency, bladder overflow, or coughing).

Fortunately, pelvic floor muscle training is discreet and can be done anywhere. To begin, make sure that the abdomen, buttocks and thighs are relaxed and stay relaxed during the exercise. Next, tighten the muscles that you would use to stop urine and flatulence. Alternatively, our team suggests stopping the flow of urine while urinating to make sure that you are tensing the right muscles. The best way to do them is on your back, but you can effectively do them anywhere. Tighten the muscles for five seconds and relax them for another five seconds. Repeat the exercise ten times in a row. In general, it’s recommended that patients do 10 Kegel exercises three times per day.

Exercising the pelvic floor muscles complement many treatments available at Affiliated Urologists and should be done in addition to other treatments prescribed by our physicians. Much like building up your other muscles, Kegels will not treat conditions overnight. It could take a few months before patients see results. Additionally, our physicians might be able to give you a more exact time estimate depending on your condition.

Affiliated Urologists is an award-winning practice recognized both locally and nationally that has provided service to patients in Phoenix, Scottsdale, and surrounding communities in the Valley, for over 40 years. The physicians emphasize top-of-the-line comprehensive urological care and strive to deliver the highest outcomes for patient satisfaction. To make an appointment, call 602-264-0608 or visit http://affiliatedurologists.com/contact/ for instructions on scheduling an appointment.

The advice and information contained in this article is for educational purposes only, and is not intended to replace or counter a physician’s advice or judgment. Please always consult your physician before taking any advice learned here or in any other educational medical material. 

New patients are always welcome.

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