Women’s health week: Incontinence

It might be an uncomfortable conversation, but let’s talk about incontinence.

Women make up 80 per cent of people who report living with incontinence, with many experiencing problems after childbirth and menopause.

Fact: a third of women who have had a baby wet themselves. And the more babies you have, the greater the risk of leaking urine.

You might be tempted to ignore it and hope it goes away, but the only way to tackle the problem is to work on strengthening your pelvic floor muscles.

Similarly, menopause is a time of change in a woman’s life. One of the changes that many women notice is increased difficulty with bladder and bowel control.

There are generally five things you can do to regain control, including eating and drinking well, exercising regularly, practising good toilet habits, and (again) strengthening your pelvic floor muscles.

Fortunately, Pilates is a great way to learn how to strengthen your pelvic floor, and can help you prevent, manage, and even cure incontinence. Just be sure to communicate your experiences with your Pilates instructor, or any other exercise professional you are working with.

At Aligned for Life Pilates we can provide you with specific pelvic floor strengthening exercises, ensuring we provide exercises with the optimal load for your pelvic floor (not too much, but not too little).

We can also assist you to gain greater pelvic floor awareness, so you are able to perform your exercises more effectively and assess when an exercise or activity is not appropriate for you.

Our goal is to assist you to build increased self-awareness and strength so you can live an active life with confidence and independence.

Importantly, Pilates is safe throughout all stages of life, including during and soon after pregnancy.

However, if you don’t see a change in your symptoms after about 3 months, make sure you seek help from a health professional.

For more information visit continence.org.au