How pregnancy affects pelvic health
Many pregnant women suffer from a weakened pelvic floor because of hormonal changes and weight gain which are a part of any pregnancy. Due to hormonal changes, our ligaments become weaker and the weight of the growing baby adds pressure on the pelvic floor. The delivery process itself and associated interventions such as episiotomy, forceps or vacuum extraction stress the pelvic floor even more. The number of pregnancies increases the probability of pelvic floor issues.
Taking care of your pelvic floor during pregnancy is beneficial for both, mother and baby. It is equally important to relax your muscles as it is to contract them. Please, consult your doctor before doing any exercises and make sure it’s safe for you and your baby.
What to do after you had a baby (Postpartum)
If you are not in pain you can train your pelvic floor right after birth. In the beginning, you should focus more on your breath, and the exercises should be gentle.
Ideally, 6-8 weeks after giving birth, you should be able to sneeze, laugh and cough without losing urine.
Getting enough rest and help as well as trying not to stress will play an important role in restoring your body and adjust to your new role as a mother.
It is important to take care not only of your newborn but also of yourself.
Going to a postpartum checkup and seeing a pelvic floor specialist is an essential part of your self-care.
It is very important to reconnect with your pelvic floor after birth. Making sure you can activate the pelvic floor muscles correctly to support your organs is the basis of your pelvic health. Exercising regularly your pelvic floor will help you prevent urine leakage, organ prolapse and encourage enjoyable intercourse and as well as support your positive body image which can be challenged with giving birth.
To be well prepared for your new chapter of life and getting as much information on time we advise you to visit an expert before giving birth.
Vaginal birth and c-section
If you experienced a vaginal birth injury like a perineal tear or had an episiotomy, the scars that are left after often won’t allow your pelvic muscles to function properly and may cause pain. The solution to this is getting treatment by a specialist. She will help you to soften the scar tissue which will take away the pain and allow your muscles to contract well again. In the case of a cesarean section, the deep abdominal muscles often won’t activate properly anymore due to the incision. Scar tissue or adhesions can develop to such an extent that they hinder the bladder and/or the uterus. Pain with urination or a constant urge to urinate as well as back pain could be the signs of adhesions. In most cases, a physiotherapist or osteopath can alleviate the symptoms. If conservative treatments for scars do not bring desired results you can seek surgical solutions. But even in the case of surgery, the treatments prior to the procedure will contribute to the progress.