The sphincter is the ring of muscles in your anus and lower rectum. It controls the opening and closing of the anus to enable the passage of stool. The inability to relax the sphincter muscles can cause discomfort and even constipation. Methods that enable the relaxing of these muscles for relief include mental focusing techniques to enable physical relaxation, utilisation of medicines, a process known as biofeedback, electro-acupuncture and even sphincterotomy, a surgical procedure.
- Skill level:
Things you need
- Muscle-relaxing drugs
- Electro-acupuncture therapist
Try to focus all of your attention on your anus. Make a conscious effort to relax your buttocks and then try to relax the sphincter.
A male may also try gently massaging the perineum to relax the sphincter muscles. If steps 1 and 2 both prove ineffective, try other methods.
Biofeedback is a technique to train the mind to regulate and control various muscle functions. It is performed in a doctor's office or hospital. Doctors evaluate the patient's ability to control his or her sphincter muscles separately from other muscles.
After the first evaluation session, the patient will be trained to focus on relaxing and contracting the sphincter muscles over approximately five more sessions. During these sessions patients will be monitored and coached while contracting and relaxing these muscles.
The muscle relaxant Dicyclomine (also known by the brand names Bentyl, Dibent, Byclomine, Dilomine and Di-Spaz) relaxes the sphincter muscles.
Diphenoxylate and atropine (also known by the brand name Lomotil) reduce spasms in the intestines among other places in the body. Be sure to drink plenty of water when taking this medication as it can have a dehydrating effect.
Electro-acupuncture is a relatively new procedure. This technique utilises a pulsating electrical current directed to the acupuncture needles, which are inserted into the acupoints.
Studies show the relaxation of the sphincter occurs with the stimulation of acupoint GB 34. Acupoint GB 34 affects the biliary system.
Sphincterotomy is the most invasive method and a last resort. It is a surgical procedure in which an incision is actually made in the patient's sphincter to prevent harmful or excessive contraction of the sphincter muscles.
Be safe and consult your physician prior to attempting any kind of invasive or medical steps. The sphincter muscles can be very easily torn and are vulnerable to infection if a lesion occurs. Caution must therefore be taken with any actions involving the sphincter muscles.
Tips and warnings
- Try the least invasive methods first.
- Do not do anything invasive without consulting your doctor, because you could cause yourself permanent harm.
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