Column: May is Pelvic Pain Awareness Month.

Above and right: Pelvic Health Physiotherapist Sarah Cushing is the newest member of the Morinville Physical Therapy Team.

submitted by Morinville Physical Therapy & Sports Injury Clinic

pelvic painMay is Pelvic Pain awareness month. Did you know that pelvic pain impacts 1 in 10 males and 3 in 10 females? Pelvic Pain can greatly impact an individual’s participation and enjoyment of life. There are health professionals who can help to make life better. One of those being a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist.  At Morinville Physical Therapy Clinic, we are pleased to provide specialized Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy to our community and surrounding areas. Specialized Pelvic floor Physiotherapy has been established in the literature as a first-line treatment to manage pelvic pain and incontinence. Incontinence is the involuntary leaking of urine and has two types: Stress or Urge Incontinence.

At your first visit, a Pelvic Therapist will complete a thorough interview to fully understand your concerns and goals. It is followed by an assessment both externally and internally (although not always required) to individually tailor a treatment program. The goal of Pelvic Floor therapy is to restore the strength and function of the pelvic floor including the ability to relax and soften the muscles and reduce pain. Education, lifestyle modifications, exercise, and hands-on treatment are some of the treatments prescribed.

Most individuals have difficulty connecting their brain to the pelvic floor, uncertain where and how. The pelvic floor includes muscles, ligaments, fascia, and nerves, all of which work together to provide pelvic stability, support the pelvic organs, assist with bladder and bowel elimination and contribute to sexual arousal.  These structures form a hammock situated at the bottom of the hip bones attaching to the tail bone and pubic bone. They work together with the abdominals, the diaphragm, and back muscles in a coordinated pattern.

You may benefit from pelvic floor therapy if your leak urine or stool, struggle with constipation, experience pain with intercourse or tampon use, experience heaviness or bulging in the vaginal or rectal opening, suffer from painful periods, persistent low back or hip pain, have endometriosis or had an abdominal surgery including c-section.

Another reason to see a pelvic floor Physical Therapist is for support prior to having a baby (birth preparation) and returning to activity, and life, after having your baby. Following your 6-week postpartum checkup with your healthcare provider is a good time to see your therapist.

Often symptoms of pain and leaking can be embarrassing, frustrating and not often talked about. They are quite common but not normal and life can be better. It is so important to normalize and not shy away from talking about these issues. No conversation is off the table in pelvic health! As a client, you will always have 1:1 time with a pelvic therapist in a private cozy space to feel safe supported and free to share your experiences.

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