Does Pelvic Floor Therapy Work?
Every person has a pelvic floor. It consists of all the muscles that support the reproductive and urinary tracts. The muscles also help in controlling the bowels and the bladder. Particularly in women, the Pelvic floor at the front keeps the bladder in place, while at the back; it regulates the vagina and the rectum. The muscles, connective tissue and tendons hold the uterus at the top of the pelvic floor. In men, the pelvic floor helps maintain the bowels, urethra, rectum and bladder in place.
Common pelvic floor dysfunctions
The pelvic floor muscles are connected to your pubic and tail bones. If these muscles are weak or not working as they should, this condition is called pelvic floor dysfunction. If the pelvic floor muscles are only tightening and cannot relax, you may have these issues:
- Pain during sex for women
- Erectile dysfunction in men
- Peeing frequently
- Difficulty controlling urine or bowels leading to leaks
Causes of pelvic floor dysfunction
According to research, there is no apparent cause of pelvic floor dysfunction . However, experts have come up with some of the things that trigger it:
- Overuse of the pelvic muscles
- Serious injuries at the pelvic area
- Being overweight
- Pelvic surgery
What is pelvic floor therapy?
Pelvic floor therapy is a treatment methodology that uses physical therapy procedures to provide a practical, structured and safe restructuring of the pelvic floor muscles. The primary goal of pelvic floor therapy is to recover the function and strength of pelvic floor muscles and alleviate pain, dysfunction and weakness in the muscles. A qualified physical therapist will access your muscles through the vagina or rectum during therapy and manipulate them to improve their functioning and strength. The possible things that the therapist will do will be stretching the muscles if they are contracted and short or combat resistance to increase their power if the muscles are dysfunctional and weak.
What conditions does pelvic floor therapy treat?
Endometriosis and incontinence are the two main problems treated through pelvic floor therapy. These problems do not occur in isolation. Mostly, pelvic floor issues are accompanied by other causes and symptoms. Some of the issues are:
- Painful sex
- Genital skin conditions and vulva pain
- Discomfort in legs, groin, hips, lower back and abdomen
- Bladder and bowel problems
If you experience back pain and skin problems, you may need to see a specialist in those areas, besides a pelvic floor specialist. It may work best to improve your causes and symptoms, t if you combine yoga, massage, bodywork and nutritional guidance.
Who needs pelvic floor therapy?
Pelvic floor therapy is fit for anyone with pelvic region disorders. Both men and women with challenges in pelvic floor muscles can exercise to control the bowel and bladder and strengthen the floor. Your doctor will recommend therapy if your pelvic floor dysfunction is thought to have a neuromuscular cause. Most dysfunctions result from childbirth, surgery, ageing, and other conditions.
The pelvic floor therapy procedure
You will have a candid conversation with your doctor during your first appointment. The specialist will collect your life history, medical history, symptoms and lifestyle details. Pelvic floor therapy specialists are experts in pelvic floor problems and trained to handle emotional discomforts that accompany sensitive conversations about issues with intimate areas of the body.
Your therapist will also examine your posture and the functioning of your hips and back. Your doctor will explain his findings and recommend pelvic floor therapy accordingly. The doctor will also explain the benefits of having the treatment and its impact on your wellbeing.
Where necessary, your specialist will also require internal tests to define the flexibility and strength of your pelvic floor muscles . Your therapist will then examine your capability of performing voluntary relaxations and contractions of your pelvic floor muscles and the movement of your pelvic floor following different breathing patterns.
On the offset of the internal and external assessments and determination of the possible causes of your symptoms, your doctor will schedule follow up sessions. The sessions will take place in a private, comfortable treatment room.
Your therapy and treatment may follow the following:
- Yoga and workouts to contact or relax the muscles of your pelvic floor
- The specialist typically performs Manual treatment is to help your pelvic floor muscles relax and relieve trigger points.
- Your therapist will use a sensor pressure probe inserted into your rectum or vagina. The tool will sense the strength of contractions of your pelvic floor muscles to determine when you are contracting or relaxing those muscles.
- Electrical stimulation. This exercise will help elicit pelvic floor muscles activation.
- Cylindrical objects. The doctor will insert cylindrical objects of changing widths and vaginal dilators into the vagina. The items gently stretch the pelvic floor muscles and allow them to relax with each insertion.
- Weighed cones. Your specialist will insert weighted cones into the rectum or vagina to increase resistance.
Does pelvic floor therapy work?
Pelvic floor therapy may sound invasive and unusual, but it is pretty compelling. Patients that have undergone the process have recorded high success rates and have enjoyed a quality life after the therapy, although the results depend on the severity of the symptoms.
If you, your family member or your friend are suffering from pelvic pain or have noticed any of the symptoms , it is time you take action. Pelvic pain is not usual at any time, and having it treated early is paramount. The more you delay the treatment, the more the pain and the more likely your nerve receptors will get sensitized to it. Subsequently, your body will develop an increased reaction to pain, making it more complicated to treat.
Pelvic floor therapy and treatment takes a maximum of eight sessions of a single hour each for a few weeks. However, for severe cases, it may take up to several months. You may also be required to have periodic therapy to keep your problems in check. Therefore, if you are experiencing undetermined pelvic pain, visit a specialist in pelvic floor disorders as soon as you can to get an appropriate diagnosis and treatment.