Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy, Ivanhoe
Women’s Health Physiotherapy is a specialised field of Physiotherapy related to the assessment and management of pelvic floor dysfunction, including but not limited to urinary and faecal incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse and pelvic girdle pain.
Many studies have found that more than 40% of women experience pelvic floor dysfunction at some time in their lives. Although extremely common, this is not normal and does not need to be accepted as a way of life. The muscles of the pelvic floor are just like many other muscles in the human body, and are highly adaptive to strength training. Our Physiotherapists are skilfully trained to manage a wide array of pelvic floor symptoms, and will work with and guide you to enhance your pelvic health in both the short and longer term.
The care and rehab we provide is grounded in the most up to date and high quality evidence whilst offering treatment in a friendly and comfortable environment. A thorough assessment involving an internal vaginal examination if appropriate will be performed and used to assess structural changes to the pelvic floor that could be contributing to symptoms. A corresponding pelvic floor treatment plan will then be developed.
Pelvic floor muscle training is just as successful as surgery for approximately half of women with stress urinary incontinence”
Guidelines recommend at least 3 months of supervised pelvic floor muscle training as first-line treatment for women with stress or mixed urinary incontinence
It is estimated that 50% of women who have ever had a baby will experience prolapse at some stage in their life. Pelvic floor muscle training is considered first-line treatment for pelvic organ prolapse.
Pelvic Floor Conditions Commonly Treated:
Bladder urgency + frequency
Pelvic Floor rehab after having a baby
Pelvic girdle pain
Pelvic pain, vulvodynia, pain with intercourse
Common Causes of Pelvic Floor Weakness include:
Persistent heavy lifting
Hormonal changes during menopause or whilst breastfeeding
Do you have a Pelvic Floor Problem?
Strengthening the pelvic floor muscles can create a stronger backstop for your urethra (the ‘tap’ that connects to your bladder) allowing you to do movements that increase intra-abdominal pressure E.g. coughing, heavy lifting, without leaking.
Increased urgency can be due to a multitude of factors including poor bladder habits or weak pelvic floor muscles. Completing a bladder diary with your physiotherapist can be a way to assess what the problem is and create solutions to reduce your urgency.
Pain can be due to muscular tightness in the muscles surrounding the pelvis or the internal pelvic floor muscles themselves. A thorough pelvic assessment will determine whether there are any strength deficits or tightness that can be addressed with a combination of manual therapy and exercises to reduce your pain.
These symptoms are commonly associated with pelvic organ prolapse which is where there is a slipping of the uterus, bladder or rectum (or a combination). This is typically due to pelvic floor weakness. A pelvic assessment will determine the degree of prolapse and allow for an individualised pelvic floor exercise program
These symptoms are commonly associated with pelvic organ prolapse which is where there is a slipping of the uterus, bladder or rectum (or a combination). This is typically due to pelvic floor weakness or trauma E.g. avulsion fracture from a natural vaginal delivery. A pelvic assessment will determine the degree of prolapse and allow for an individualised pelvic floor exercise program.
The pelvic floor muscles contribute to closing the anus to prevent faecal leakage. Your physiotherapist will determine whether your symptoms are diet related or whether there is a pelvic floor weakness that could be contributing to your symptoms. This can also be an issue post significant tearing during a natural vaginal delivery.
Pain during sex can occur due to a prolapse wherby there is now contact with organs that aren’t positioned where they usually are. Or it can be an issue of an overactive pelvic floor that is quite tight and irritable. A pelvic assessment will help determine the cause of your pain and create a management plan for you.