Physiotherapy is designed to help improve strength and mobility. It can be used to diagnose a wide array of health issues involving the musculoskeletal system.
It can also be used in order to help treat muscle strain and muscle spasms. Preventive care is also a key component of physiotherapy. Your physiotherapist will teach you techniques that will help avoid future injuries.
Pelvic floor physiotherapy should be considered if you suffer from chronic constipation or bladder and bowel control disorders, such as incontinence or irritable bowel syndrome.
Soft tissue techniques can be used in order to help treat chronic or acute constipation. If your pelvic floor muscles are too tight or too weak then physiotherapy can be used to treat bowel or bladder issues.
Also, if you have recently given birth and are dealing with postpartum pain, then physiotherapy can be used to relieve your chronic pain as well. Here, we will focus on how physiotherapy may aid pelvic floor optimization.
What causes weakened pelvic floor muscles?
If you are dealing with pelvic floor muscle weakness then you may be wondering what the root cause of your problem is. In truth, pelvic floor muscle weakness may be caused by a variety of different issues.
For instance, an injury that was sustained to the pelvic area may lead to the weakening of the muscle region over time. The recent birth of a child may also cause great strain in and around the pelvic region, causing muscle weakening that usually does not improve without help.
Obesity also places added pressure on the pelvic region, as well as many other vital organs. Damage to the nerves, which may be caused by an injury, a botched operation, a disease or a genetic condition, may also exacerbate pelvic muscle problems.
There are several exercises that your physiotherapist can teach you in order to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles. However, while exercise can be very effective, the exercises that are practised must be the correct ones.
If you perform the wrong exercises then you may actually be doing more harm than good.
Who can benefit from pelvic floor physiotherapy?
If you suffer from a condition that causes the muscles in your pelvic region to be too loose or become too tight then you may benefit from pelvic floor physiotherapy.
The treatments that are administered may be external, internal or both. Some people may be sensitive to internal treatments, so your therapist may begin with external treatments until you are comfortable with moving on to internal treatments.
Examples of external treatments include joint mobilization, skin rolling, nerve release, deep tissue massage and trigger point therapy.
As for internal techniques, they may include inserting a finger or a special apparatus inside the rectum or vagina in order to administer trigger point therapy. Anesthesia may also be injected into certain trigger points, albeit the injections will likely be administered by a nurse or a doctor.
Or, your therapist may administer pressure on a certain area in order to treat your pelvic floor issue. Your therapist may also ask that you practise kegel exercises in order to strengthen your pelvic floor muscles.
They will teach you how to perform kegels the proper way so that you don’t hurt yourself.
Pelvic floor dysfunction will be treated using a range of different tools that are at their disposal. For example, electrical stimulation can be used in order to reduce muscle spasms and pain.
In some cases, the therapist may perform the treatments in the office. In other cases, the therapist may provide you with a portable kit to use at home.
Therapeutic ultrasound may be used in order to generate warmth using sound. Blood flow will be increased and muscle spasms will be reduced in the process. You may also notice a reduction in your inflammation after having undergone therapeutic ultrasound.
Some state-of-the-art ultrasound devices can even be used at home for added convenience.
Biofeedback involves the use of electrical impulses in order to teach the patient how to relax their pelvic floor muscles. In order to use biofeedback, a probe may be inserted into the rectum or vagina. Electrodes may also be attached externally to the area between the anus and vagina.
In regards to your readout goal, your therapist will explain what your goal is and will help you achieve the optimal level. In some cases, you may need to visit your clinic in order to make use of the device.
However, you may also be able to rent a portable unit that you can use at home as well.
What are the symptoms that cause pelvic floor dysfunction?
If you have a frequent urge to urinate or defecate then you may be dealing with a pelvic floor dysfunction. Straining while defecating is also a telltale sign of pelvic floor dysfunction, and can lead to hemorrhoids and other serious problems if left untreated.
Constipation can be caused by a lack of fibre, as well as not drinking enough water. However, constipation may also be caused by pelvic floor dysfunction.
The only way to know for certain is to make an appointment with your doctor or physiotherapist in order to properly diagnose the problem.
Stool or urine leakage can be a serious problem sometimes caused by cancer or another serious condition. However, stool or urine leakage may also be caused by pelvic floor dysfunction.
Pelvic floor physiotherapy can help in treating your pelvic floor dysfunction.
There is Hope
If you are suffering from pelvic floor dysfunction then your physical therapist will help provide relief. They will evaluate your medical history and carry out physical tests to assess how well you can control your pelvic floor muscles.
The severity of your condition, as well as its root cause, will determine the therapeutic modality or modalities that they will employ to help treat your condition.