By Dr. Allison Feldt, PT, DPT
Tonight I sneezed and did not pee!!!!
I am super pumped about this BECAUSE last week I got hit with a bad bout of allergies. I was sneezing and coughing and my pelvic floor could not sustain this and I was peeing myself every time I sneezed or coughed. I had to even change my pants a few times which I was embarrassed about. I’m a pelvic floor physical therapist, so you would think I would have my core together and my pelvic floor would be super strong! For the most part, it is. However, I have a pelvic organ prolapse and what happens to me when I get a flare up is I occasionally leak, aka pee. I want to share this with you because this is where training your pelvic floor and being aware of what things to do to help yourself can really ease symptoms and make you feel good, confident and strong in your body. So here’s where I started I put my pessary back in, which is something I wear to support my bladder. So I committed myself to wearing that throughout my times of being symptomatic. I committed to doing some downtraining of my pelvic floor muscles. Which means making sure I was fully relaxing my pelvic floor as I tend to be fairly tense. With breathing and meditation over the weekend, I had my tone more under control.I did a lot of pelvic elevating to help decrease the descent of my prolapse. So then I got back to doing some strengthening and could even do some weighted pelvic floor contractions with my pelvic floor weights. So what changed from last week to this week?How am I sneezing this week without peeing? I’m not sneezing as frequently as my allergies are more under control, so less overall pressure.
So what changed from last week to this week?How am I sneezing this week without peeing? I’m not sneezing as frequently as my allergies are more under control, so less overall pressure. The next thing I was able to manage, was my tone and get back to doing the pelvic floor contractions with weights and retraining my pelvic floor, which let me tell you, the strength of my pelvic floor did not change between last week and this week. What did change was my nerve connection to the muscle. The ability of my nervous system to control my pelvic floor and therefore, I could control what was coming in and out of it. It’s really important that you’re not just doing a million “kegels” but you’re re-training your pelvic floor. A lot of people are so concerned about maintaining the strongest pelvic floor but what really needs to happen is a coordination of several muscles that will help keep your pants dry.