May 6, 2020

Why cross her legs when sneezing?

Testimony of Kirsten, mother of 3

During the pregnancy of my eldest son, I had no problems at all. I was sitting on a pink cloud and I have always had faith in my own body and the support of medical science. My eldest son came into the world as a healthy lump of 4,350 kg. The delivery went as smoothly as possible and I think I recovered quite quickly. The gynaecologist strongly advised me to do postnatal childbirth therapy. She urged me to do so because my son was such a "heavy" baby at birth. My first physiotherapist, a very passionate woman, explained the importance of pelvic floor muscle exercise and indeed it soon became clear to me when doing certain exercises that certain muscles seemed to have completely disappeared. As a sporty young woman, this was quite confronting. So I was very driven to get fit again.

Starting preventive exercises yourself

My second pregnancy followed fairly quickly after the first. My son was 9 months when I was pregnant again with our daughter. Another lump of 4 kg. Although I had been doing plenty of sport in the meantime, I felt it was important to do my exercises again properly after the birth of my daughter. It was a bit more challenging, because then there are two small children that take up all your energy. But I was still determined to do "the work" now and hopefully reap the benefits later. I absolutely want to avoid prolapses later on or problems such as loss of urine or stool.

It was only during my recent 3rd pregnancy that my pelvis began to hurt. Three pregnancies in four years is quite a demand on your body. After the pregnancy of my second son, and partly because I was in real pain during my pregnancy, I wanted to see what the "damage" was. After the consultation with the pelvic floor physiotherapist at the UZA, I learned a lot about how everything is related to the pelvic floor and the importance of postnatal exercises. I have to say that I was very positively impressed by the thoroughness of the pelvic floor examination.

Breaking taboos and talking

All in all, it was not so bad for me. I still try to do the exercises and put the tips into practice. So now I know why my mother crosses her legs when she sneezes and I also try to talk about it with friends and sisters (in law) as taboo-free as possible. Because the taboo atmosphere inhibits a good approach... It is important to know that many women suffer from problems such as leaking urine during or after pregnancy, but that with the right exercises you can often do something about it. So I hope that the pelvic floor consultation and the prescribed exercises will help me to remain a fit mother who can jump on the trampoline with her children without any leakage.


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