Pelvic Organ Prolapse and Infertility
Growing up, most women assume that when they decide to have children, pregnancy will come naturally; after all, that is what our uterus/womb is designed for.
However, infertility can be one of the most heartbreaking things for a woman and her partner to experience. Fertility treatments, endless doctor appointments, and plenty of emotional stress make this devastating and all consuming.
Understanding the process of conception and how all parts of the body play their role, can help achieve the much-wanted pregnancy.
Pelvic organ prolapse can affect fertility, and therefore it is vital to take steps to exercise and strengthen the pelvic floor.
Can a Pelvic Organ Prolapse Cause Infertility?
No, a pelvic organ prolapse does not cause infertility, but it can increase the issues encountered when trying to conceive naturally.
Therefore, it's essential to understand how and why. Although it is not directly responsible, pelvic floor dysfunction can affect conception and therefore delay the ability to conceive for several reasons.
- Pelvic Pain
- Painful Intercourse
- Repeat Infections
Being in a lot of pain is debilitating, and of course, if the act of intercourse creates even more pain, this will obviously be a barrier to conceiving. In addition, pelvic organ prolapse can lead to more infections of the urinary tract and vagina, which again can set back progress for many couples and are exhausting and depressing for a woman to have to cope with.
All of these issues naturally create a high-stress environment, which is also not good when trying to conceive. In addition, it can make women reluctant to engage in sexual intercourse and limit their enjoyment.
Having a prolapsed uterus can mean that any deposited sperm can potentially fail to make the journey up the cervix but instead be expelled into the air, where they will die. It could be possible to combat this in some way by resting in a position with the uterus elevated after sexual intercourse but having strong pelvic floor muscles does this job naturally.
How Do Stronger Pelvic Floor Muscles Help With Fertility?
The stronger the pelvic floor muscles are, the better the sex will be, which in itself is a good thing for trying to achieve pregnancy.
As well as this, having a strong pelvic organ area can help the sperm make the critical journey to the egg. This can be backed up by scientific evidence and the world-renowned sex educator:
Dr Ruth Westheimer says that this is down to improved blood flow in the genital and pelvic area, which, in turn, gives a greater capacity for the vagina muscles to tighten during the peak of sexual activity.
The good news is that pelvic floor muscle exercises can be done anywhere at any time.
Kegel’s are the most discrete form of pelvic floor exercise, and no one would even know you were doing them.
Irrespective of whether a woman is trying to get pregnant, has been pregnant, or has delivered vaginally or via Caesarean, pelvic floor muscle exercises should be a part of daily life.
However, when a woman is trying to conceive, it is even more important that she creates a more robust pelvic floor by regularly undertaking Kegel exercises.
Is It Safe to Get Pregnant with a Prolapsed Uterus?
Yes, it is safe to get pregnant with a prolapsed uterus, it can just be harder to achieve conception, but it does not directly affect the ability to get pregnant and carry a healthy foetus to term.
However, if the pelvic floor can be strengthened before and during the pregnancy, it will help with the weight of the growing baby and lessen the risk of things like incontinence caused by pressure.
- Strong pelvic floor muscles also help you prepare for an easier delivery and faster recovery.
- Significantly reduce the risk of tearing during birth.
- Reduce the chance of bladder weakness and prolapse during and after pregnancy.
If you require intervention in the form of infertility treatment, a pelvic floor prolapse will not change the course of the treatment, but it can affect the efficacy.
Fertility drugs are designed to change the hormone balance and positively impact ovulation. They do not create the pregnancy themselves. This is created by a healthy sex life.
Having pelvic floor issues can impact the enjoyment a woman feels, and therefore the sex life dwindles, and the treatment is less likely to be successful. However, there is no medical reason for a woman who has a prolapsed uterus not to be able to conceive.
How to Reverse Pelvic Prolapse to Improve Fertility
Pelvic floor muscles can weaken over time, particularly if a woman has already gone through childbirth and delivery.
However, it is entirely possible for someone who has not yet carried a pregnancy to have weak pelvic floor muscles, as the strength does decline as we age, if we are not consistent with exercising our pelvic floor muscles or are overweight.
Having a baby growing in the uterus places more weight in this area, so there are plenty of reasons to try and strengthen the pelvic floor even before you get pregnant.
Discovering you have fertility issues and also pelvic floor prolapse can be pretty devastating news, but the good thing is that most pelvic floor prolapses can be improved.
Pelvic floor exercises (Kegels) are recommended to improve muscle strength.
Pelvic Floor Dysfunction (PDF), does not cause infertility; however, a healthy, strong pelvic floor can improve the rate of fertility success in some cases because fertility drugs rely on a healthy sex life at conception. A weak pelvic floor condition that causes pain and lack of sexual intercourse enjoyment will hinder this.
It is important to remember that pelvic floor prolapse is not responsible for and does not directly impact the fertility of a woman. However, it can indirectly impact how successful fertility treatment can be. So, if you are trying to conceive start now preparing your body and pelvic floor for pregnancy.
Pelvic Floor Exerciser For Women - Just 15 Minutes A Day
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