You may have heard of Kegel exercises. Although they are frequently associated with sexual stimulation, they are used to treat urinary incontinence and to prepare or recover from childbirth. Most gynecologists and obstetricians recommend Kegel exercises and vaginal weightlifting equipment as a way to increase vaginal elasticity and bladder control.
What is a Kegel Exercise?
Kegel exercises strengthen your pelvic floor muscles, specifically your pubococcygeus muscle, also known as your PC muscle. Your PC muscle is a hammock-like muscle that controls your urine flow and contracts during orgasm. To do a Kegel exercise, you need to squeeze and hold your PC muscles for five seconds and release them for five seconds. Doing sets (repetitions) of Kegel exercises, where you contract and release your pelvic muscles, can help you gain control of your pelvic muscles.
Can Men Do Kegel Exercises?
Yes. Men have the same muscles in their pelvic floor, and Kegel exercises are useful in reducing premature ejaculations and increasing the size and intensity of erections.
What Factors Cause Weakening In My Pelvic Floor Muscles?
- Abdominal Surgery
Your vaginal pressure can be gauged by a digital examination (where your doctor inserts one or two fingers into your vaginal canal), or with the use of a Kegel perineometer.
Kegel Exercises Help Common Disorders
- Pelvic Prolapse: When your organs inside your pelvic area, such as your uterus, fall out of place, sometimes protruding through your vagina, kegel exercises to aid in returning your pelvis to functioning normally and preventing future prolapses.
- Sexual Function: Studies show that women doing Kegel exercises can attain orgasm more easily, frequently, and with more intensity. If you have a lack of sexual feeling during intercourse, you may be suffering from a dysfunction in your PC muscle. Strengthening your PC muscle
- Urinary Incontinence: Women who have urinary incontinence of stress, urge, or mixed types can benefit from strengthening their pelvic floor muscles.
Which Disorders Are Used To Treat In Men?
- Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia: More than 3 million cases of benign prostatic hyperplasia occur each year. It is a chronic condition characterized by age-associated enlargement of the prostate gland. This leads to difficulty urinating, and Kegels can help build up the PC muscle and build urinary control.
- Prostatitis: Prostate pain and swelling.
- Sexual Dysfunction: Erectile dysfunction (ED) affects many men, and for many reasons. Pelvic muscle training is known to be helpful in strengthening the bulbocavernosus muscle that is in charge of allowing the penis to engorge with blood during an erection, pumping out ejaculate, and emptying the urethra after urinating.
- Urinary Incontinence: Kegel exercises help with keeping control of a leaky bladder. Urinary incontinence is both preventable and manageable.
How Do I Do Kegel Exercises?
If squeezing your PC muscle seems unfamiliar, just think of feeling like you need to keep yourself from urinating, almost like a feeling of “holding it all in.” You will notice a sensation in both your pelvic floor and your penis or clitoris. Doing some Kegel exercises each day: at least ten reps of holding your muscle for five seconds then releasing it for five can help your urinary and sexual health immensely.
There is exercise equipment to help women with Kegel exercises. Items such as ben wa balls, vaginal weights, and devices that provide electrical stimulation are all known to be somewhat helpful. Be careful, because there are a lot of products on the market that are billed as “Kegel exercise equipment,” many of which are created to make money and have no effect on your PC muscle at all. If your PC muscle is not engaged, no amount of exercise or equipment will help you. In fact, using no equipment at all is preferable to using equipment that has not survived the tests of time. Vaginal weights and electro equipment are useful as stimulation, but they have no medical data supporting their efficacy. Ben wa balls (not to be confused with vaginal balls or Baoding balls) are also known as orgasm balls, Venus balls, or geisha balls. They are small, marble-sized balls that are hollow but contain a little weight, clappers, or chimes within it. They are inserted into the vagina only and are used for both sexual stimulations and to increase the strength in your pelvic floor muscles. This Taoist (a philosophical tradition that originated in China and emphasized living in harmony with the Tao (the absolute principle that underlies the universe, containing principles of both yin and yang) sexual practice has been around for centuries.
Kegel Exercise Results
You should achieve tangible results from doing regular Kegel exercises (like less urine leakage) within 8 to 12 weeks.
Sexual dysfunction and urinary incontinence are two unavoidable issues that many of us face. Thankfully, there are non-surgical options that we can take to combat these symptoms. Urinary incontinence is preventable, manageable, and treatable with regular Kegel exercises. If you are a man considering getting a Viagra prescription for your erectile dysfunction, or if you are a woman considering a vaginal rejuvenation surgery to tighten her vaginal canal, seek therapy and make sure you can’t combat your symptoms and dissatisfaction with practicing these simple pelvic floor contractions each day.
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