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While they may be uncomfortable to talk about, rectal exercises have a number of different benefits, depending on your health. You could be suffering from pain or discomfort due to constipation or hemorrhoids, or perhaps you are looking to retrain your muscles following pregnancy or prostate surgery. Whatever your reason for doing them may be, rectal exercises can provide you relief and help you return to a comfortable lifestyle.
Kegel exercises, sometimes referred to as pelvic floor exercises, can benefit people with all sorts of rectal issues 12. Kegel exercises are beneficial for both men and women, as they help strengthen the uterus, the bladder and the large intestine 12. The best way to execute Kegel exercises is to pretend you have to urinate, and then stop, contracting the muscles that you use to prevent yourself from urinating 12. When you urinate, contract your bladder and anus. Women should contract the vagina as well. These muscles are known as the pelvic floor. Kegel exercises should focus on these muscles, and the abdominals, buttocks and thigh muscles should stay relaxed 12.
According to the Cleveland Clinic, bowel incontinence, or the loss of voluntary control of your bowels, affects upwards of 2 percent of the U.S. population. Muscle strengthening exercises, including Kegel exercises, can be beneficial to retrain and strengthen your pelvic floor 12. If you do a set of 30 Kegel exercises three times daily, you should see improvement in your incontinence and regularity in just a few weeks 12.
Kegel exercises, as well as walking and regular exercises, can help treat as well as prevent hemorrhoids 12. Hemorrhoids can develop from hard stools, diarrhea or lifting heavy weights. Treating hemorrhoids with Kegel exercises may be painful, so try to complete the exercises while managing the pain at the same time 12. The Kegel exercises promote blood flow and circulation in the pelvic floor, which is necessary to help heal hemorrhoids 12.
When you are pregnant, it is beneficial for you to have a strong pelvic floor before you go into labor. Childbirth places a large strain on your pelvic floor, so the stronger it is beforehand, the more it will benefit you during the process. Kegel exercises before and after pregnancy can help you maintain regularity in your bowel movements, as well as help prevent hemorrhoids and anal tears 12.
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