Kegels can help deal with urinary incontinence after prostate surgery. Named after the physician who formulated them, Kegels strengthen muscles in the pelvis. These muscles control bladder tone.You can use these exercises to help keep or regain control over your flow.
A Kegel is the squeezing action you make if you stop your stream of urine in mid-flow or at the end of urinating. Feel how, as though by instinct, you tighten your buttocks and your anus. Your body learned this in early childhood, by practice.
Now as an adult you can strengthen this response. Here's the routine developed at Beth Israel in Boston and published in Prostate Cancer (1996, 1999) by David Bostwick, M.D., Gregory MacLennan. M.D., and Thayme Larson, M.D.
- While standing, squeeze the pelvic muscles and hold for up to ten seconds. Remember to breathe while squeezing. You may want to count the seconds out loud.
- Relax for a count of ten.
- Repeat the squeezes up to fifteen times in a session, until you are tired or can't hold a ssqueeze for ten seconds.
- Relax for a minute or so.
- Do a rapid set: Squeeze for one second, relax for a second. Repeat ten times, then rest for moment.
- Repeat the rapid cycle with rests between ten times.
- Do the exercises as often as you are able.
- Remember to use these muscles.
- Do a Kegel if you feel a sneeze or cough coming on
or a belly laugh,
or if you run for a bus ... or anytime you expect stress incontinence to occur.
last updated January 29, 2006
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