Girls as Young as 12 Should Be Taught Pelvic Floor Exercises: NICE

Jane Kirby

July 02, 2021

Girls as young as 12 should be taught about pelvic floor exercises as part of the school curriculum, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended.

New draft guidance looks at how pelvic floor dysfunction can be prevented and managed without surgery.

NICE said girls aged 12 to 17 should be given lessons about the pelvic floor, including its anatomy, possibly as an addition to classes on sex and relationships.

The new guidance says women of all ages should be encouraged to do pelvic floor muscle training to help prevent the condition.

For those with a mother or sister with pelvic floor dysfunction, a three-month programme of supervised pelvic floor muscle training should be offered from week 20 of pregnancy.

This programme may also be offered post-birth to women at higher risk, such as those who have had some types of assisted deliveries.

Up to 140,000 women per year could benefit from this preventative strategy, according to NICE.

'Effective Options'

Professor Gillian Leng, chief executive of NICE, said: “Pelvic floor dysfunction is a common and often debilitating set of symptoms that can result in many issues for women.

“This draft guideline aims to raise awareness of non-surgical management options so that women are better informed about effective options to address pelvic floor dysfunction.

“Improving women’s awareness of pelvic floor health and encouraging them to practise pelvic floor muscle exercises throughout their lives is the most effective way to prevent pelvic floor dysfunction.

“We are keen to hear views from stakeholders and the wider community on these draft recommendations and would encourage as many organisations and people as possible to contribute to the consultation.”

The guideline also says women should be told that exercise and a balanced diet can help prevent pelvic floor dysfunction.

Wide-ranging information on the condition should also be made available across different health settings.

This article contains information from PA Media.

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