- 2 November 2022
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5 Reasons to See a Pelvic Floor Physio
There’s a new buzz in the air and it’s not just the recent snowfall! Pelvic floor physiotherapy is growing in popularity as it can be hugely helpful for treating and supporting some of our most intimate issues. Here are 5 reasons a pelvic floor physio may be someone you may want to start working with:
1. You leak urine, gas, or poo when you don’t want to!
Our pelvic floor is a set of muscles that live inside and at the base of our pelvis. It is responsible for our bladder, bowel, and sexual function. Ideally, the pelvic floor does its job automatically and is a part of your body you’ve never thought about. However, we can develop dysfunction in these muscles which can lead to various symptoms including leaking unexpectedly or when we don’t want to, otherwise known as incontinence. There are two types of incontinence that we typically experience. Stress incontinence happens when physical movement or activity (sneeze, cough, laugh, jump, run etc) applies pressure (stress) on your bladder causing you to leak, whereas urge incontinence is leaking that occurs because of a strong, sudden urge to urinate that is difficult to delay. Neither of these are something that you should have to live with. Through education, pelvic floor muscle training and more, pelvic floor physio can help make a significant different in the amount, and frequency of these accidents happening.
2. You are pregnant or have had a (or many) babie(s) and would like to support and rehab your core, pelvic floor, and body.
There is no denying that growing and birthing a baby is a lot to put your body through. There is so much that a pelvic floor physiotherapist can do to help during this phase and there is so much scientific evidence to support it! Prenatal individuals can benefit from exercises to strengthen their bodies, core, and pelvic floor, education about the changes occurring in their bodies, preparing for labour as well as manual therapy to relieve some of those growing aches and pains. Postnatally, pelvic floor physiotherapy assesses how you and your pelvic floor are recovering from birth and support you through your rehab. Regardless of if you’ve had a baby via C-section or vaginal delivery, pelvic floor physiotherapy can help restore your pelvic floor function, improve diastasis (abdominal separation), improve pain with sex, and simply support you through this enormous physical and emotional transition.
3. You would like to be sexually active but are limited by pain, fear, or function
First, sex is complicated. Between the awkward birds and bees with our parents and the less than thorough high school sex ed, the topic of sex is often a bit hush. It can be harmful not to understand the multitude of factors contributing to an ideally fulfilling sexual experience and even more harmful not to know who to speak to about the barriers one may be living with.
Thankfully, I do believe this is changing and pelvic floor physiotherapy is here to help. Whether you are curious to learn more, someone who feels physically and/or emotionally limited with sex, or someone who has lived through negative or traumatic experiences seeing a pelvic floor physiotherapist can be hugely beneficial. Pain is not something you should be enduring. Please know that our pelvic floor physiotherapist is educated in and practices from a trauma informed approach.
4. You have pain in or around your tailbone, hips, or low back
Pelvic floor physiotherapists are very well versed in assessing and treating musculoskeletal issues in and around the pelvis. The pelvic floor is a huge contributor to our hip and core stability and its job can be compromised by injuries anywhere in the body (shocking, I know). Furthermore, in some cases, nagging aches that aren’t resolving around your hips, knees, low back, mid back – the pelvic floor may very well be playing a role (and vice versa)! Consult a pelvic floor physiotherapist to explore what may be contributing to your discomfort. And remember that we are also your good-ol’ trained normal physiotherapists and can treat the whole body.
5. You are menopausal and are dealing with some pelvic floor symptoms or would like to better understand what changes are occurring.
There are generally two moments in a uterus owner’s life that they should be paying special (preventative or rehab) attention to their pelvic floor; before and after birth and around menopause. Menopause causes a significant drop in estrogen which plays a big role in the support and function of the pelvic floor. Estrogen is a key hormone responsible for keeping our tissues firm and elastic, therefore this reduction can lead to symptoms such as heaviness, leaking, frequency, dryness, and pelvic floor weakness. Working with a pelvic floor physiotherapist, along with your doctor, can truly help relieve some of these symptoms and support you (and your pelvic floor) for many more postmenopausal years to come.
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