You’re going to do—or have already done—the seemingly impossible and deliver a small person. But even if you read the parenting books and listened to every person on the planet dish out advice (wanted or not), we’re gonna go ahead and bet there are a few important, ahem, changes, that no one warned you about. Here’s what you need to know about what’s going on downstairs post-baby-pushing.
1. Your trampoline days may be over.
And you may need to stand when sneezing, or wear pads to exercise. Sorry, ladies, but these are real accounts of post-baby bodies with stress urinary incontinence, a condition that causes urine leakage during activities that put pressure on your abs. That said, though, it’s completely unacceptable to suffer through wet panties for the rest of your life.
So Dr. Alyssa Dweck, M.D., a gynecologist in Westchester, New York and author of V is For Vagina, recommends kegel exercises to strengthen pelvic floor muscles, losing the baby weight, and giving your body time to heal after labor. Even if those don’t work though, you have options: Dweck says there are various surgeries or medicines that can help, too.
2. Workouts will revive your sex life.
Pregnancy and labor puts a lot of stress on your pelvic floor muscles (PFM). Those puppies do all the work when it comes to bladder control, childbirth, and having a good sex life; so it’s essential that they’re in tip-top shape (strong PFM = strong orgasms).
To get them there, ask your doctor for a batch of approved exercises, and consider using the Elvie if you get the green light from doc. It’s a rounded, sensored device you insert into the vagina, and then you clench and release your muscles around it for 5-minute workouts. And because we’re so tech-savvy (or dependent) these days, of course it connects to your iPhone to provide real-time bio-feedback.