Midwife Katie says: The pelvic floor is a sling of muscles that supports the organs in your pelvis, including your uterus and bladder. During pregnancy, the growing weight of the baby and the softening effect of pregnancy hormones on the ligaments and joints can put the pelvic floor muscles under pressure. If your pelvic floor becomes weak, you may experience stress incontinence, where you leak if you laugh or cough because the muscles can’t sense if your bladder’s full.
To improve muscle tone, pelvic floor exercises will help. To do these, close up and draw in the muscles around your bladder opening, as though you’re trying to stop passing urine in midstream. Repeat round the anus, as though you’re stopping yourself having a bowel movement. Hold these positions for as long as is comfortable, breathing normally and then relax. Repeat several times daily.