Pelvic Floor Rehabilitation
Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy is becoming more established in the literature as a first-line of management against incontinence and Pelvic Pain. The 2010 Cochrane Collaboration concluded that physiotherapists with specialized training in pelvic floor rehabilitation (using internal examination to teach the exercises) should be the first line of defence, before surgical consultation, for stress, urge and mixed incontinence in women.
Pelvic Floor Dysfunction can be caused by:
- HYPOTONICITY (decreased muscle tone, weak and lengthened muscles) : contributing to stress incontinence and pelvic organ prolapsed.
- HYPERTONICITY (increased muscle tone, tender, weak and shortened muscles): contributing to Urgency, Urge Incontinence, Chronic Pelvic Pain, Dyspareunia, Vaginismus, Vulvodynia, Pudendal Neuralgia, Interstitial Cystitis and Chronic Prostatits..
As a result, 'Kegels' are NOT always indicated for pelvic floor problems. Sometimes they do more harm than good, and often they are NOT performed correctly.
Pelvic Health Physiotherapy can treat conditions such as:
- Urinary Incontinence
- Stress Incontienece
- Urge Incontinence (Overactive Bladder)
- Fecal Incontinence
- Pelvic Organ Prolapse
- Chronic Pelvic Pain
- Vulvodynia, Vaginismus, Vestibulodynia
- Interstitial Cystitis/Painful Bladder Syndrome
- Dyspareunia (Painful Intercourse)
- Pre and Post-Partum
- Diastasis recti
- Pre and post-natal rehabilitation
Physiotherapy treatment options vary, depending on the diagnosis, but may include:
- Education regarding normal bowel/bladder function, dietary and lifestyle factors
- Pelvic Floor Muscle awareness and progressive strengthening/stretching exercises
- Connective tissue massage
- Myofascial trigger point release
- Bladder retraining
- Behavioural techniques
- Manual therapy techniques