Why Kegels Aren’t the Only Thing to Help Urinary Incontinence: Connective Tissue Quality

Many times during an initial evaluation, a patient has told me that they have been doing kegels every day but they are still having leakage. I can only imagine how frustrating it would be to feel that something so simple as contracting your pelvic floor like a bicep curl every day wouldn’t be able to ‘fix’ a very sensitive problem. Sometimes it is just as simple as doing kegels, however, in our experience, there is much more going on than weakness in the pelvic floor that is causing urinary incontinence. This is part 2 of 6 discussing other reasons you could be having urinary leakage (for both men and women). 

​The second topic to discuss is connective tissue quality. As we age, our connective tissue (the ligaments and tendons that hold muscles and organs in place) can become less efficient than they used to be. For others, reduction in estrogen could reduce the tissue quality of the support structures due to decreased blood flow to the area. If someone has a traumatic birth experience, there could be scar tissue and/or an injury that reduces the mobility or support of the muscles and organs.​

For some, these changes in the tissues are big enough that surgery is warranted, however, a lot of the times, physical therapy can help improve the quality of the connective tissue and teach you techniques to improve positioning of your organs such as:

  • Pelvic organ decompression
  • Proper breathing techniques
  • Nutritional advice
  • Proper lifting techniques