Is your pelvic floor letting you down in the bedroom?
Is your stamina just not what is used to be?
Help is at hand and even better, it won’t cost you a cent! Thank you the wonderful readers at Starts at 60 for your great response to my last article for women on vaginal dryness. This time I’m writing for the gentlemen (or women who feel their partner could benefit from a nudge along).
Read on now to learn:
We all know what an erection looks like but have you ever wondered what happens for the penis to become erect? Is it a bone? Is it a muscle that springs to life when you’re aroused? None of the above, in fact the penis consists of 3 tubular chambers containing sponge-like tissue that is filled with spaces. During sexual arousal blood rushes into these chambers which become engorged causing an erection. The length and the girth of the penis are both increased when blood rushes into these chambers. Blood needs to be trapped in the tissue spaces for an erection to be maintained. If the blood freely drains away the erection is lost and the penis becomes flaccid.
What provides the stopper force retaining the blood in these chambers? Your pelvic floor muscles!
When the pelvic floor muscles contract they help to retain blood within the chambers of the penis keeping it erect.
Being unable to have an erection or maintain an erection can be caused by medical issues including diabetes, kidney disease, neurological problems or blood vessel disease.
Some men suffer from erectile dysfunction because they lack sufficient pelvic floor muscle strength and endurance to maintain their erection.
Pelvic floor muscles can lose their strength with:
Signs of weak pelvic floor muscles include:
Step 1: Find your pelvic floor muscles
Your pelvic floor muscles are located in and around where you sit. They are like a hammock running from your tail bone to your pubic bone (behind your penis) and side to side between the bones you sit on.
Try not to confuse your pelvic floor muscles with your buttocks – your buttocks are on the outside, your pelvic floor muscles are inside your body and can’t be seen with the naked eye.
Step 2: Feel your pelvic floor exercises
Pelvic floor exercise feels like an inward lift of the testes towards your body lift and squeezing/lifting sensation around your anus.
These simple techniques can help you find and feel your pelvic floor muscles working:
When starting out
When your pelvic floor strength improves
Like any muscle strengthening, training your pelvic floor requires patience and commitment. Some men notice improvements in the first 3-4 weeks of commencing their exercises.
If your pelvic floor muscles are weak or if you’ve never exercised them before, it can take up to 5-6 months of regular exercises to strengthen your pelvic floor.
If you’re still unsure or if you can’t notice an improvement after 3 months of training, help is at hand. Many of the large Australian hospitals have Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy services (you will need a doctor’s referral and treatment is free of charge).
Pelvic floor physiotherapists also work in private practice and no referral is required – just check that the Physiotherapist you contact works in the field of pelvic floor health as this is an area of specialised Physiotherapy service.
The Continence Foundation Hotline can provide you with the name of a Continence Nurse Advisor or a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist near you (free call 1800 33 00 66).
I hope that these Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy exercises will give you better strength, control and stamina – please feel most welcome to ask your questions below or visit me at my Pelvic Exercises website for more information.
Do you have any questions for Michelle about your pelvic floor and erectile dysfunction? She will answer them in the comments.