Do your prolapse symptoms get worse with housework?
Are you returning to housework after pelvic prolapse surgery?
Many women feel rightfully concerned about avoiding prolapse overload with housework. Avoiding housework is unrealistic (for most of us) and there are steps you can take to reduce the load on your prolapse with your everyday housework chores.
Read on now for practical solutions to protect your prolapse with housework with:
- Cleaning floors
- Scrubbing the bathroom
- Cleaning windows
1. Doing the Laundry
When your laundry gets wet the clothes can become heavy. Heavy lifting should be avoided with prolapse problems. If you’re regularly doing a lot of washing for a busy family or washing heavy items like men’s overalls or bedding this can involve repeated heavy lifting.
- Carrying a heavy laundry basket
- Bending forwards to ground level to hang washing on the line
- Lifting and hanging large heavy wet items
- Invest in a laundry trolley to wheel your laundry basket to the clothes line
- Lift the washing basket using correct lifting technique for prolapse
- Spin dry heavy items thoroughly to lighten the load
- Avoid filling the laundry basket to the top
- Keep the weight you lift within your safe lifting limits
- Sit your laundry basket at waist height level when you hang clothes and fill the basket (shown right)
Ironing can involve hours of standing and in some cases leaning forwards.
- Prolonged standing for women after recent prolapse surgery
- Leaning forwards over the ironing board for extended time frame
- Invest in an adjustable height ironing board that’s the right height for you to iron at waist height
- Keep your trunk upright and avoid prolonged bending forward
- Sit rather than stand if prolonged standing causes prolapse symptoms
3. Cleaning the Floors
- Wearing a vacuum back pack
- Lifting or carrying a heavy vacuum cleaner
- Bending forwards when vacuuming or sweeping especially after recent prolapse surgery
- Moving heavy furniture by pushing pulling or lifting
- Bending forwards to ground level to pick up items e.g. toys
- Use safe lifting techniques if you need to move furniture
- Delegate the job of moving heavy furniture to others
- Invest in a lightweight vacuum cleaner
- Use lunge technique to pick up items from the floor
- Invest in a long handled dustpan and broom set if you’re at increased risk of prolapse problems
- Use a long handled broom/vacuum that promotes good upright posture (shown above)
- When sweeping or vacuuming stand upright in a lunge position and use a lunging action bending your front knee and moving your hips forwards (shown above) rather than bending forwards from your waist
4. Scrubbing the Bathroom
- Carrying a heavy mop bucket
- Bending forwards from your waist to scrub the shower or clean the bath
- Invest in a lightweight mop bucket
- Avoid overfilling the mop bucket
- Slide the mob bucket where possible rather than lifting and carrying it
- Kneel to clean the bath (cushion your knees on hard floor tiles)
- Kneeling on all fours (shown above) is preferable to bending forwards for scrubbing floors and low tiles
- If scrubbing causes you prolapse symptoms avoid it altogether – delegate the job to someone else or use a heavy duty cleaning spray-on product instead
5. Cleaning Windows
- Bending forwards to clean windows set at low heights
- Kneel to minimise forward bending
- Invest in a long handled window cleaning tool
This list of ways to protect your prolapse doing the housework is by no means exhaustive.
It’s simply intended to provide you with practical solutions for staying active with your prolapse. You can adapt these solutions help you with other physical challenges to your prolapse that you might encounter doing your housework.