Problems with control of the bladder or bowels is common – 1 in 4 people! It does not go away by itself but it can be treated and even cured. Problems with continence is not a natural consequence of child birth or ageing. These are the messages of World Continence Week 2017.
In 2010 there were 4.2 million Australians with urinary incontinence – 80% were women. Over half of these women are under the age of 50. Incontinence is more common than asthma, anxiety or arthritis.
So there is a good chance this includes you. The good news is that it can be helped. First all the usual things – maintain a healthy weight, have a good diet – avoid constipation, avoid too much caffeine (irritates the bladder) and do your pelvic floor muscle exercises.
Now – just like running around the block doesn’t get you ready for a marathon, 3 minutes of pelvic floor exercises does not get your pelvic floor toned. Most people know the idea of stopping your stream of urine as the idea for what you need to do. You want to really feel the “squeeze and lift”. Sometimes it takes training with a continence nurse or physiotherapist to get the idea.
Once you know the feeling, then you want to hold it for 8 – 10 seconds (or 3 slow breaths). Then repeat 10 times. Sound like exercising? Sounds like hard work? Then you are getting the idea. But it works. Guys you can do this too – and there are benefits for your sex life!
OK, so you have tried the exercises but they are not working for you. Maybe they would work… just like you could train for a marathon but don’t. So is there an alternative?
MonaLisa Touch laser is a 5 minute, painless, walk in/walk out treatment being used very successfully for menopausal women. It reverses the symptoms of vulvo-vaginal atrophy – dryness, burning, itching, painful sex and in many women stress and urge incontinence. There are usually a series of 3 treatments done 1 month apart and the benefits last about 1 year. After 1 year a single treatment usually continues the benefit.
If you want to discuss if MonaLisa Touch can be of benefit to you then call 1300 105 505 or via our website.
For more information on pelvic floor exercises see – www.pelvicfloorfirst.org.au They even have a free app you can download!