Health Tip For Men And Women

We know that there is a desire to stay in your own home for as long as possible, but many times your ability to remain independent is the deciding factor as to whether must seek other housing options.  There are things you can do now to maintain independence longer.

It’s widely known that if you are eating a healthy diet, getting plenty of sleep, playing “brain games”, and being active, you are headed in the right direction.  Being flexible and steady enough to perform your activities of daily living (e.g., bathing, hygiene, food preparation and cooking, laundry, making the bed) is part of maintaining your independence along with taking medications and caring for other health needs.

But, as we age, many men and women begin to have a problem with stress incontinence and other issues related to the weakening of pelvic muscles.  These muscles support the bladder, uterus and rectum.  When the muscles become weak, these organs “drop”.  This begins to create hygiene and social problems and can be prevented with certain exercises called “Kegels” or pelvic floor exercises.  If you are experiencing urinary or stress incontinence due to weakened pelvic muscles, you are likely to see improvement within three to six weeks of performing daily Kegel exercises.  If you don’t see improvement, you may not be using the right muscle group.  We recommend you contact your physician or urologist for help in locating the pelvic floor muscles.

Good news for men and women alike so you can get out there to enjoy life without embarrassment, these exercises are easy to do and it’s never too early or too late to start.  There are great Internet sources on “how-to” for men and “how-to” for women.  Here is a brief summary to give you an idea of how easy it is to integrate these exercises into your daily routines.

Three times a day, performing ten to 15 Kegels at a time, you can do the exercises before getting out of bed in the morning, when you are standing in the kitchen or in line for lunch, and sitting watching television in the evening.  A variety in positions is good.  To figure out which muscles to contract, try stopping the flow of urine when you are in the bathroom.  Once you’ve figured out the muscles, squeeze for three seconds, then relax for three seconds.  You can build up to contracting and releasing these muscles at ten second intervals.  Kegel’s are something, like other good health habits, that must be done regularly to continue the benefits.  And those benefits include not being afraid to go and enjoy life!

Independence is the name of the game to avoid needing daily assistance or relocating to other, some times less appealing, housing options.  It’s our goal to help offer tips to healthy living geared toward maintaining independence as well as assistance in locating other living options and senior resources in the Vancouver and Clark County area.

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