So, what exactly is pelvic health physiotherapy? This is coming from our experienced Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist.
Pelvic floor physiotherapy is a specialized technique physiotherapist (trained and certified) can apply to individuals with pelvic dysfunction. It involves internal and external assessment and treatment of the pelvic floor muscles. Those muscles are located between the hip bones and the sacrum, and they serve as a bowl to support the pelvic organs including the bladder, colon and uterus.
What if these muscles are too tight or too weak?
This is where pelvic health physiotherapists come in. We are highly trained physiotherapists that are specialized in treating pelvic floor dysfunction. Our practice includes both external and internal physiotherapy.
Why internally you might ask?
In its most basic sense, internal pelvic floor physiotherapy involves a physiotherapist using his/her finger to examine someone with tender or shortened pelvic floor muscles or points that are affecting the bladder, tailbone, urethra, prostate (in men), and other organs.
It’s imperative that you manage your pelvic floor problems NOW. Just like any other muscle in your body. Use it or lose it!
If you don’t take the time to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles now, then it could lead to bigger problems such as:
A strong and connected pelvic floor means:
I will explain you later how to practise a few pelvic floor exercises.
Do you usually breathe into your shoulders or your rib cage?
1. Put one hand on your check, then put the other hand on your stomach
2. Inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth
Where did you breathe - chest or stomach?
The breathing strategy that is going to benefit you is to breathe into your stomach (or lower rib cage to be exact) So let’s practice breathing:
Lie on your back, legs fully stretched. Place one hand on your belly and one on your chest. Inhale and feel the belly rise, like it's a ballon blowing. Ribs should expand out to the sides, but chest should hardly move. Exhale, allowing belly to fall again. Try to spend about 10 minutes daily connecting with your breath.
How do you naturally stand? More weight on one side than the other? One leg straight and the other with a knee bent?
Pelvic posture tips
Let’s consider your pelvic position and rib cage position. Can you stack your rib cage directly over your pelvic while standing on both legs evenly?
You can also try this pelvic floor exercises diagnosis with the Thomas test:
While the posture and shape of the spine can help to signal anterior pelvic tilt, another method of diagnosis is the Thomas test. It can be performed to help identify anterior pelvic tilt.
This exercise should also help with pelvic floor dysfunction.
Lie on your back, knees bent and feet flat. Find your pelvic belt and hold, raising one leg up so it reaches a 90-degree angle with the trunk and slowly lower back to the floor.
Monitor your pelvic movement with one hand on the pelvic bone and upper abdominals with one hand on the bottom or the ribs. You do not want to see your abdominal wall “pooch” out or be over working for this motion. This exercise is very good to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. Repeat 10 reps each leg.
Come down to your forearms with your torso facing the mat and place the roller under your right upper inner thigh. You will need to bend your right knee up and out to the side and place the foam roller up and under your groin.
Taking care to keep your upper-body square to the ground as you move, use your forearms and left leg to power the motion as you slowly roll the roller down toward the knee (stopping just above it), and back up again. Breathe slowly and steadily throughout the move.
Repeat this motion six to eight times on each side.
Benefit: Creates circulation and blood flow to the upper inner thigh and inner thigh attachment to the pelvis. Helps activate and tone the inner thighs in a more efficient alignment.
So...how important is your pelvic floor?
The majority of our clients coming for pelvic floor physiotherapy have recovered very quickly. Here is the story of one of them...
I, first came across Pillars of Wellness by doing a search "pelvic floor physiotherapy near me" as I was not ready to drive more than 5 minutes away with the condition that I had. I suffered with the loss of my bowel, so I can't even tell you how uncomfortable I was. I never experienced any issue with my pelvic before until I gave birth to my little girl.
Then, I met Nicole...To this day, I cannot thank her enough for helping me and treating me with support and guidance. I visited her twice a week for a period of 4 weeks. I was doing my home pelvic floor exercises religiously every day as suggested by my therapist.
My two cents is...Don't wait if you feel that your pelvic is not right. Pelvic floor dysfunction can give you lots of pain! Take care of it as soon as possible!
Nicole is currently accepting new patients. If you wish to speak with her prior making an appointment, she offers 15 minutes free consultation. Pillars of Wellness is located in Burlington, Aldershot and provides other services such as chiropractic, neuro physiotherapy, pediatrics services, speech therapy, occupational therapy, counselling, acupuncture and yoga therapy.
A Pelvic floor physiotherapist will observe your posture, alignment, and how you move. Tests and measure your balance, strength, flexibility, range of motion, sensation, and coordination. After an overall body assessment, your therapist will examine the structures of the pelvis.
Exercising weak muscles regularly, over a period of time can strengthen them and make them work effectively again. Regular gentle exercise, such as walking can also help to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles.
Treatment for pelvic pain using pelvic physiotherapy typically takes 4 weeks to several months with more severe cases.