OPTIONS DESIGNED TO IMPROVE YOUR CONDITION NOW AND IN THE FUTURE
Many pelvic floor conditions will respond to treatments that don’t require surgery. But even if you and your doctor choose a surgical procedure, the long-term resolution of your disorder may be helped by using some of these options as well.
Building and maintaining strength in the muscle group that supports your bladder, vagina and rectum is important for overall pelvic floor health. With Kegel exercises, you build strength by pulling in or “squeezing” your Kegel muscles. These exercises are important in preventing and treating stress and urge urinary incontinence (involuntary leakage of urine), fecal incontinence (involuntary leakage of stool and gas) and pelvic organ prolapse (falling or bulging). You can do Kegel exercises on your own or with the help of a pelvic floor physical therapist.
This is a special way of performing Kegel exercises by using a device that gives you feedback about the strength and holding ability of your Kegel squeeze. You can do this at home or in a physical therapist’s office with the use of special equipment.
Several bladder and bowel conditions respond to behavioral changes. Certain foods and beverages can be irritating, especially to your bladder. It can also be easy to fall into habits over the long run, which can have a negative effect on how your bowel and bladder function. We will evaluate your day-to-day habits to see if you have any patterns that can be altered to improve your condition.
Most commonly, we use medication to treat conditions that result in increased urinary urgency and frequency. These medications mildly relax your bladder muscle so that you can hold more urine and therefore go to the bathroom less frequently. There are also medications available to help treat bladder pain.
A pessary is a device that is worn in your vagina to support a prolapsed (falling or bulging) uterus, vagina, bladder or rectum. If you have symptoms of pelvic pressure and heaviness due to prolapse, it allows you to relieve them without surgery. You can use a pessary as a permanent solution or as a temporary treatment when it is preferable to delay surgery.