Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy
Conservative Treatment for Incontinence and Pelvic Pain
Pain or incontinence interfere with your life, affect your relationships, or impose activities restrictions? There is an option that can help: Pelvic Floor Therapy.
PELVIC FLOOR MUSCLES
These are the muscles that attach to the bottom of the pelvic bones and run front to back, forming a bowl-like structure that lifts to support the internal organs and controls the sphincter muscles. The pelvic floor muscles also work to strengthen the low back, stabilize the pelvic bone , and help with sexual function.
Pelvic Floor Dysfunction (PFD) includes
- Urinary urgency, frequency, or leakage
- Pain during or after intercourse
- Unexplained low back pain or pelvic region pain
- Organ prolapse
- Pelvic floor weakness – Post surgical issues
Millions of people suffer from pelvic floor dysfunction – it is more common than you think. About 1 in 5 women suffer from pelvic floor dysfunction. However, many are unidentified or untreated. According to current guidelines, lifestyle modifications and conservative treatments should be advocated to all women with urinary incontinence as first-line treatment.
WHAT IS INCONTINENCE?
Urinary incontinence is the leakage of urine at inappropriate times. With incontinence you may have trouble starting the urine stream or have trouble holding urine when you feel the urge to go.
There are different types of incontinence:
- Stress Incontinence – Usually results from weakness or lack of support from the pelvic floor muscles. Small amounts of urine leak when there is increased pressure on the bladder, such as with exercises, laughing, or sneezing.
- Urge incontinence – Your bladder muscles are “over active” or go into spasm. This may cause urine to leak or give you the urge to urinate. This may happen occasionally or as often as every 15 minutes.
- Mixed incontinence – you have both stress and urge incontinence. Functional incontinence
- Urine leaks when you cannot get to the bathroom in time.
PELVIC FLOOR TREATMENT
- Relaxation/diaphragmatic breathing
- Bladder and bowel health education
- Bladder retraining
- Urge suppression techniques
- Pain management
- Myofascial release
- Visceral mobilization
- Scar management
- Trigger point release
- Pelvic floor and core strengthening
HOW PHYSICAL THERAPY CAN HELP
Your PT will perform an examination to help identify the causes of your symptoms. Based on the evaluation results, your physical therapist will create an individualized treatment plan to address your pelvic floor dysfunction. Your physical therapist can help you gain control over your incontinence or pain and will educate you about the steps you need to take to improve your symptoms.
Pelvic pain can present in many places and be an indicator of pelvic floor involvement. These areas include abdominal pelvic region, low back, external genitalia, buttock, hip or thigh.
- Postpartum Pain
- Levator ani syndrome
- Pudendal neuritis
- Myofascial restrictions
- Post surgical pain
Contact your physician and ask about physical therapy for your Pelvic Floor Dysfunction. We will need a prescription or referral to initiate your treatment.
An individual evaluation performed by our pelvic floor therapist specially trained in the treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction can offer a variety of treatment options tailored to meet your unique needs.
Claire Shores, PT, DPT
Claire is a native New Mexican, she attended the University of New Mexico where she received a bachelor in nutrition and a doctorate of physical therapy. She looks forward to helping patients through therapy to strive for a happier, healthier life.