Updated: May 10
The pelvic floor refers to the muscles that support your reproductive and urinary tract. These muscles attach to your pelvis and to your tailbone and sacrum. In addition to providing support, they also help you control bladder and bowel function. When these muscles aren’t working properly, you may experience pain and other symptoms that interfere with daily functions, urinary continence, and sexual function. Pelvic Floor Physical therapy can help ease pain and associated symptoms, strengthen weak muscles, relax spasmed or tight muscles, and get you back to normal functioning.
What is Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy?
Pelvic floor physical therapy is a treatment to help address pain, weakness, and dysfunction in the pelvic floor muscles. The type of therapy prescribed will depend on the symptoms you’re experiencing. For example, some symptoms will require relaxing and lengthening of the muscles, while others may require strengthening the muscles.
Pelvic floor PT typically involves both external and internal evaluation and treatment, and your Physical Therapist will evaluate the three main layers of the pelvic floor for weakness, strength, tightness, spasm, or pain. You may also be checked for prolapse of the uterus, bladder, or rectum, to see if this may be causing any of your symptoms. Your therapist may also check you for separation of the abdominal wall (diastasis recti) and/or your breathing patterns, as the breath is connected to the function of the pelvic floor.
Some symptoms that can be improved with Pelvic floor Physical therapy include
Urinary incontinence, reliance on incontinence pads
Difficulty stopping or starting urinating
Difficulty fully emptying the bladder
Straining or experiencing pain during bowel movements
Pain in the back or hip, unresolved with traditional methods
Pain in the genital area
Pain during intercourse
Pain when inserting or removing a tampon
Prolapse of the uterus, bladder, or rectum, or suspected prolapse
Interstitial cystitis (IC) diagnosis
If you have any of these symptoms, Pelvic floor Physical therapy might be right for you. We understand that this can be a sensitive issue for many, and some women feel very uncomfortable sharing their symptoms and experiences. Rest assured that these issues are very common, though they are NOT "normal" and you do NOT have to live with them. Many women learn to live with these issues because they don't know that there is something that can be done to help. Even many OB/GYN's are not fully aware of all that can be accomplished with Pelvic Floor PT.
If you have any questions or concerns about this subject, feel free to email us at email@example.com or to schedule a free, private consultation either over the phone or in-person, you may register here: https://www.thegreenroomptny.com/events-and-offers and make sure to specify that you would like to speak to one of our Pelvic Floor Doctors.
In good health,
Dr. Ashley Bertorelli, PT and Founder of The Green Room Physical Therapy
Clifton Park & Troy