The pelvic floor is like a soul. It needs to be taken care of and nourished from time to time since it is at the forefront in supporting your sensual and discreet functions. The pelvic floor muscles are the layer of muscles that support the pelvic organs and extend to the bottom of the pelvis. They help stabilise the pelvis and support the organs of the lower abdominal cavity – the bladder, uterus and rectum. The pelvic floor is attached to your pubic bone in front, and to the tail end of your spine behind. Whenever you stand up, the pelvic ensures you are confident and works with you hand in hand in your life making efforts, literally, such as during the act of lovemaking.
In our African culture, the topic of pelvic floor health is one of the least discussed or understood and one in which many men and women struggle with. When the pelvic floor muscles are weak or damaged, the bladder, uterus and rectum openings can be compromised. Although the pelvic floor is hidden from view, it can be consciously controlled and therefore trained, much like your arm, leg or abdominal muscles.
ROLE OF THE PELVIC FLOOR
One of the major roles of the pelvic floor organs is to support the organs that lie on it. We usually get conscious control over the bladder through the sphincter muscles, which enables us control our urine and fecal matter, as well as wind. This happens when the pelvic floors are contracted, the internal organs get lifted, and the sphincters tighten the openings of the vagina, urethra and anus.
As soon as they relax, passage of stool and urine is enabled. Pelvic floor muscles are also important for sexual function in both men and women. In men, it is important for erectile function and ejaculation while for women, voluntary contractions (squeezing) of the pelvic floor muscles contributes to sexual sensation and arousal.
The pelvic floor muscles in women also provide support for the baby during pregnancy and assist in the birthing process. The muscles of the pelvic floor work with the abdominal and back muscles to stabilise and support the spine.
WHAT CAUSES A WEAK PELVIC FLOOR?
Many factors can weaken your pelvic floor muscles. These include:
• Aging process.
• Being overweight.
• Chronic coughing.
• Surgery around the pelvic region like a caesarian section, hysterectomy and hernia operation.
• Strenuous exercise and injury.