Relaxation Techniques

Course Transcript

Slide 22

Continuing on to the second section, all about breathing and relaxing. The better your child is able to purposefully relax their body, the easier it will be to purposefully relax their pelvic floor muscles during toileting. I find that many of the children I work with unknowingly keep groups of muscles tense and tight (just like adults can); for the kids I work with, these muscle groups are often the gluteals (more commonly known as the butt cheek muscles), the pelvic floor, or the abdominal muscles. Becoming aware of that tension and then practicing relaxing those muscles can be tremendously beneficial for toileting symptoms. 

One way to help relaxation is through exercise. I’ll link the video at the end of this section, but I often prescribe rainbow smiles to kids to help them increase their control over their body, while purposefully relaxing and tightening muscle groups at the same time. When there are multiple demands for a task, which simultaneously require different things of different muscle groups, the body’s coordination improves, which will ultimately help with the coordination requirements for toileting. 

Slide 23

The other exercise to practice is called the body check. I’ll link this one too, but this is more about mindfulness. You can tweak the exercise to better suit your child’s needs, but basically it goes like this. They go through a series of questions about sensations they are feeling in their body, ending with questions related to their bowel and bladder. You can time body checks at regular intervals to see if you can help them perceive urges to go better, or you can just practice the body check so they learn the practice of it, and then they can apply it themselves into their daily routine. 

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