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Kegel exercises

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Kegel exercises

Kegel exercises can strengthen the pelvic muscles and ligaments to treat and prevent urinary incontinence, fecal incontinence, and other problems caused by having weak pelvic floor muscles.

To do Kegel exercises:

  • Squeeze your muscles as if you were trying not to pass gas. Or squeeze your muscles as if you were stopping the flow of urine. Your belly, legs, and buttocks shouldn't move.
  • Hold the squeeze for 3 seconds, then relax for 5 to 10 seconds.
  • Start with 3 seconds, then add 1 second each week until you are able to squeeze for 10 seconds.
  • Repeat the exercise 10 times a session. Do 3 to 8 sessions a day.

When learning what muscles to squeeze, you can try stopping the flow of urine a few times. But don't make it a practice to do Kegels while urinating.

If doing these exercises causes pain, stop doing them and talk with your doctor. Sometimes people have pelvic floor muscles that are too tight. In these cases, doing Kegel exercises may cause more problems.

If you aren't sure how to do these exercises, talk to your doctor about getting a referral to a pelvic floor physical therapist.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

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This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.