What is Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy?
The Pelvic Floor is a group of muscles that sit in the base of the pelvis. Most commonly these muscles are known for their role in bowel, bladder and sexual function. They also play a key role in the core which means dysfunction in the pelvic floor can often lead to low back, hip and groin pain. Pelvic health issues are often poorly addressed or ignored completely. Cornerstone is pleased to offer external Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy with our Physiotherapist, Vanessa Milot. Pelvic health issues and pelvic pain are more common than people realize and Physiotherapy can help!
Why call a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist?
Some common conditions addressed by a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist include
- Athletes with incontinence issues
- Non-mechanical Low Back Pain
- Pelvic pain (low back, hip, pelvic region)
- Pre and Post Pregnancy (assistance returning to sport/activity safely, pain, leakage, c-section scarring, tearing, episiotomy, preparation for labour and delivery)
- Urinary urgency or frequency
- Incontinence of the bladder or bowel
- Prolapse of the bowel, bladder, uterus, rectum
I’ve never heard of Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy. Why?
Unfortunately many of the conditions treated by Pelvic Floor Physiotherapists are very common but rarely discussed. As a result, individuals live with these symptoms for months, even years, thinking that their symptoms are “normal”. Common DOES NOT mean normal and it definitely does not mean untreatable!
It is NOT normal to:
- Leak when you exercise, cough, sneeze, laugh or jump
- Rush to the toilet for fear of leaking
- Urinate more than 8 times a day
- Experience pain or discomfort with intercourse
- Feel pain, pressure or heaviness in the pelvic region
These are common symptoms of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction and they can all be treated by a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist.
What can I expect in an Assessment?
Our Physiotherapist is trained in external Pelvic Health Physiotherapy which means assessment with Vanessa will include questionnaires, discussion about your symptoms and a “typical” Physiotherapy assessment (e.g. assessing range of motion, strength, posture, gait). Some pelvic health conditions must be treated internally. If this becomes necessary for you, Vanessa will refer you to an internal Pelvic Health Physiotherapist.
What can I expect in a Treatment?
Treatment is specific to each individual but may commonly include:
- Manual therapy (pelvic area, hips, low back)
- Soft tissue release
- Postural alignment and gait re-training (improving posture and walking)
- Breathing techniques
- Home exercise program
- Training in pelvic floor activation and/or relaxation
- Self-care strategies
- Establishing healthy bladder and bowel habits
- Ongoing education and check-ins as needed
Pain/symptoms can persist even after external muscles and tissues have been addressed. In these cases, treatment must be performed internally. Our Physiotherapist will refer these patients to an internal pelvic health Physiotherapist for further care.