According to the World Health Organisation, bladder problems affect more than 200 million people worldwide, and it’s estimated that over 3 million people over 65 in the UK experience urinary incontinence.
Here are some of the most common bladder and bowel issues:
Urinary tract infections
Incontinence or urgency
Constipation or diarrhoea
Aside from infections, bladder and bowel issues often arise from nerve or muscle dysfunction. In a functioning system, our nerves tell certain muscles when to tense up and when to relax – the muscles that control the flow of urine and bowel movements. But age, giving birth, and inactivity are all factors that can weaken these muscles and lead to dysfunction.
The pelvic floor muscles are there to support the organs that lie within – our bladder, bowel and sexual organs. Strong pelvic floor muscles let us consciously control the release of urine, faeces (poo) and flatus (wind). Weakened muscles mean the internal organs aren’t fully supported and can lead to the issues described above.
PELVIC PHYSIO & BREATHING EXERCISES
Pelvic floor exercises, sometimes called kegels, are repetitive exercises in which we contract and relax the pelvic floor muscles. Daily practice of these exercises increases awareness, coordination and control, and can effectively treat bowel and bladder issues.
Diaphramatic breathing goes hand-in-hand with a strong, healthy pelvis. This means when we inhale, we allow our belly to expand and the pelvic floor to drop down, and when we exhale, we contract the muscles and draw the pelvic floor back up.
You can learn more about pelvic health, breath and exercise by booking onto one of our courses or an upcoming workshop on hormone health & Fitness.