The Best Kept Secret in Women’s Health
By Ibukun Afolabi
Let me tell you a little story that doesn’t have a happy ending.
There once was a woman named Jane who was 30-something and pregnant for the first time. The pregnancy went by relatively well and her labour wasn’t particularly traumatic, although she did push for well over two hours. The doctor had to resort to using forceps. As they stitched her up, the nurse said “don’t worry, dear. All that matters is that the baby is healthy.” During her last post-partum visit, she mentioned that she experienced a bit of urine leakage with certain activities. “It’s normal since you just had a baby,” came the reply. “It will get better on its own. Just do your kegels.” So Jane started those kegels and also decided to enroll in mommy boot camp to help her lose that mushy midsection that she couldn’t seem to get rid of doing crunches.
Fast forward 10 years and 3 kids later…Jane can’t cough, laugh, or run without leaking, her tummy is mushier and weaker, sex is pretty blah, and she feels like she has no tone or support “down there”. She is embarrassed to tell her doctor how she feels because after all, it is normal now that she’s a mom….right?
Wrong! Pelvic floor dysfunction (PFD) may be common (for example, 1 in 3 Canadian women over age 40 have incontinence) but it is not normal and is definitely not optimal. If PFD is so common, why does it remain the best kept secret in women’s health? For several reasons: 1) underlying beliefs about health that are flawed yet propagated, 2) a lack of education about PFD – even among healthcare professionals, and 3) a fear to disclose certain embarrassing problems – elements all present in Jane’s story. So who is Jane? She could be you or me. Her story could be our story. But unlike Jane, we can have a happy ending. Better yet, we can re-write the entire story from the beginning. We can learn to harness strength from within and function optimally from the inside out.
If this interests you, you’ll definitely want to attend a seminar at West London CrossFit on May 9th that will help to demystify the pelvic floor.
You will learn the ABCs of optimal pelvic floor and core function: A for Awareness and Alignment, B for Breathing and Biomechanics and C for (Motor) Control. Not to mention why doing a million kegels simply doesn’t work. And you’ll learn how it all fits perfectly with the principles of Life by Design.