Proactive Pelvic Health Strategies for Women Over 40
As a woman, your body is always changing. Taking care of your pelvic health is important at any age. Whether you thought about it in your 20’s, or are just now in your 40’s (or later), starting to take a proactive approach to the health of your pelvic floor, the main thing is to begin!
Peri-Menopause and Your Pelvic Health
Women over forty are headed into peri-menopause, meaning their bodies are experiencing a shift in hormone levels (progesterone, estrogen, and testosterone) as they prepare for menopause. This usually happens for 2-10 years leading up to menopause. During this time, pelvic health is greatly impacted, and with it, one’s quality of life.
When we talk about pelvic health, we’re referring to bladder and bowel functions as well as sexual function. Having healthy pelvic floor muscles will lead to more mobility, less pain, and greater fulfillment as your body ages well.
The hormonal changes we talked about above impact the strength and function of the pelvic floor muscles. Like many parts of your body, they will require care and attention to maintain through your 40’s and beyond.
So what proactive strategies can you take to your pelvic health? The most important thing is to start right away!
Prevention is the Best Medicine
Don’t wait until you’re facing frustrating symptoms of pelvic dysfunction like bladder leaks or pain. If you feel like you have nothing to worry about, now is the perfect time to start paying more attention to your pelvic health. Consider working the following shifts into your lifestyle.
A healthy diet fuels your body to work as nature intended. Choose whole, unprocessed foods as often as possible. Great sources of fibre like fresh fruits, vegetables, and whole grains will all help you avoid constipation and keep everything moving. And be sure to drink plenty of water to keep all your organs, muscles, and systems hydrated.
It’s also important to maintain a healthy weight. Being overweight can contribute to so many issues, and your pelvic health is no exception.
Your body does its most healing work while you’re asleep. Prioritizing a good night’s rest will help your body function at optimal levels. So practice setting a consistent bedtime routine to prepare yourself to sleep well. Limit screen time, late-night snacking, and alcohol to gain the most from your nighttime hours.
Manage Your Stress
Your mental health plays a huge role in your overall well-being. If you are feeling stressed, your sleep will be affected, but so will your body’s ability to handle its regular processes and healing. Take some time to learn what helps you unwind and let go of the things that tend to tie your mind up in knots. A relaxing mineral bath, yoga class, or meditation can allow you to go from tense and overwhelmed to peaceful and prepared to move forward.
Maintaining an active lifestyle will serve all your muscle groups well, including your pelvic health. It’s easy to slip into sedentary habits, whether you work from home, in an office, or simply don’t get the push from your peer group to get out and move as often. But you can be a trend-setter! Grab a friend and go for a walk on your lunch break. Set a goal to hike your favourite trail and start training for it. Or it can be as simple as taking the stairs instead of the elevator. An active body is a healthy body.
Strengthen Your Core
The lifestyle habits we just talked about will support your overall health, which in turn, promotes pelvic health as you move through your 40s. But one of the most direct strategies you can take to maintain your pelvic health is to focus on strengthening your core.
A strong core is responsible for stability, mobility, and a healthy pelvic floor. Think beyond Kegels and look for exercises, programs, and therapies that support all the muscles that wrap around your organs and attach to your pelvis and spine.
Talk to a Professional About Your Pelvic Health Strategy
Whether you’re experiencing symptoms of pelvic dysfunction or not, talking to a pelvic floor specialist can help you create a plan to strengthen and maintain your health for the long term. Our professionals at Corelife Wellness are here to listen to your questions and concerns with no judgement. Book a call today!
https://youtu.be/PV6XF3G0BTA – Pelvic Floor & Stabilization Exercises for Women Over 40
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