Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy In Toronto
What is pelvic floor physiotherapy?
Pelvic floor physiotherapy is a well researched, well established and specialized area of practice for physiotherapists who have advanced training in pelvic health. There are several pelvic health conditions that have too debilitating effect on one’s life to be ignored. Urinary incontinence, stress or urge, pelvic organ prolapse, and pelvic pain are very common conditions that female and male patients may suffer from without realizing that there are effective and practical treatments for them. One of the common misconceptions which may cause patients to avoid seeking professional help is that these conditions are natural process of aging, comes with older age and not reversible. Many people from different age groups may deal with incontinence with physical exertion and/or coughing and sneezing. There are several physical conditions, regardless of age, that may lead to pelvic organ prolapse. Pelvic health conditions have effective solutions that a well-trained physiotherapist can offer and will reverse and fix them. Another misconception is that pelvic floor physiotherapy is all about Kegel. Kegel exercise is an overly used exercise that usually is done incorrectly. Kegel is not indicated for every single patient, and even if indicated, it requires a professional assessment to ensure it is done properly.
Pelvic Floor Treatment?
Research has proven that pelvic floor physiotherapy should be the first line of treatment for different urinary incontinence conditions before any surgical intervention is recommended. Pelvic floor is a group of muscles that support the content of our abdominal region like the foundation of our body by connecting pubic bone and tailbones together and to the hips. They support urethra, vagina, rectum, bladder and uterus. Dysfunction of this region can be due to hyperactivity (tightness) or hypoactivity (weakness) of muscles or a combination of both. Physiotherapy assessment requires external and internal examination of pelvic floor muscle activity, and treatment techniques are combination of manual, hands-on, therapy to improve tone and function of muscles, education about self-care, exercises and different types of modalities.
Which conditions pelvic floor can be treated?
Conditions that are due to dysfunction of pelvic floor muscles are divided into two groups:
- Chronic pelvic pain
- Urinary urgency
- Fecal urgency
- Pudendal neuralgia
- Interstitial cystitis
- Chronic prostatitis
Conditions related to hypoactive muscles:
- Stress incontinence
- Urge incontinence
- Pelvic organ prolapse
Hyperactive muscles, muscles that are too tight, or hypoactive muscles, muscles that are too weak can cause decreased stability of lumbar spine, sacroiliac joint inflammation and decreased mobility and stability of hips. People who suffer from low back or hip pain usually have signs of pelvic floor dysfunction and motor control deficits. Tightness in pelvic floor muscle may show the following signs and symptoms:
- Urinary frequency, urgency or hesitancy, pain with urination or difficulty with emptying bladder
- Constipation, straining, pain with bowel movements
- Unexplained pain in low back, pelvic region, hips, genital area, or rectum
- Pain during or after intercourse, orgasm, or sexual stimulation
- Uncoordinated muscle contractions causing the pelvic floor muscles to spasm
Pelvic floor physiotherapy is the gold standard, non-surgical intervention to treat any condition that pelvic floor muscle dysfunction is a contributing factor.