What is the Pelvic Floor?
The pelvic floor is a group of muscles that sit in the pelvic inlet and perform five critical roles. The pelvic floor is one of three core stabilizers, contributes to continence control, role in sexual function, acts as a ‘sump-pump’ to regulate the flow of liquids around the pelvis, and supports the abdominal organs.
When there is injury, trauma, or dysfunction to the pelvic floor whether its due to trauma, pregnancy, delivery, ageing, pelvic or abdominal surgeries, or falls, one could experience a number of problems such as pelvic girdle pain, incontinence, low back pain, pain during sex, prolapse, and many other symptoms.
Unfortunately, many of these health conditions are kept secret due to feelings of embarrassment and due to its taboo-nature. Luckily, more and more people are talking about pelvic floor physiotherapy, doctors are starting to make referrals for this service, and some universities are teaching physiotherapy students the skills to practice in this realm of physiotherapy.
Preparing for a Pregnancy
There is absolutely some truth to the saying, ‘prevention is the best medicine’, when it comes to your pelvic health. Certain conditions, such as diastasis recti, can be prevented to a certain extent with preventative treatment, exercises and education that pelvic health physiotherapists provide.
‘Battle Scars’ after Pregnancy
Whether you are suffering from pain after a caesarian, an episiotomy and/or from rectus diastasis, pelvic health physiotherapists are trained to assess how your ‘birthing-battle scars’ are healing and we have the training to perform manual techniques to help with pain management and spend a lot of time teaching you how to perform self-management so that the pain from these scars do not hinder your day-to-day activities, sexual health, and future pregnancies!
Pelvic Organ Prolapse
Have you been diagnosed with a pelvic organ prolapse or have you been feeling a sense of “heaviness” in the pelvic region ever since your pregnancy? Depending on the severity or level of the prolapse, physiotherapy may be beneficial to reduce the pain and feeling of ‘heaviness’ in the pelvic region. The pelvic health physiotherapist will recognize if a pessary needs to be fitted or a visit to the doctor is required depending on how you present and the level of the prolapse.
Urinary and Fecal Incontinence
Did you know that one in three females and one in nine males are affected by urinary incontinence? Those suffering from incontinence are often times too embarrassed to seek help or feel that it’s a normal part of the aging process so that they do not think to seek help. Pelvic health physiotherapists are primary health providers who have received specialized training to treat various types of incontinence. You do not have to suffer in hiding anymore, incontinence is absolutely NOT a normal result of aging nor a normal result of a natural birth and since there are at least five different types of incontinence, just doing ‘Kegels’ is not always the answer!
Have you ever been diagnosed with or are currently suffering from any of the following conditions:
- Stress/Urge/Mixed/Functional/Overflow Urinary Incontinence
- Fecal Incontinence
- General Pelvic Floor Weakness
- Interstitial Cystitis
- Pudendal Neuralgia
- Persistent Pelvic Pain
- Levator Ani Syndrome
- Piriformis Syndrome
- Proctalgia Fugax
- Urethral Syndrome
- Pelvic Organ Prolapse
- Bladder Sphincter Dysenergia
- Pre/Post-Natal Rehabilitation
- Pregnancy-Related Pelvic Girdle Pain
- Diastasis Recti
If you answered YES to any of the above questions, problems with your pelvic floor muscles, fascia, or nerves may be contributing to your symptoms/pain. Pelvic floor physiotherapy may be of benefit to you.
If you still have questions. Make an appointment with our pelvic health physiotherapist!
Q & As:
1)How much are the pelvic health physiotherapy sessions?
For an initial one-hour assessment, we charge $125 and from there you can choose between 30 or 45 minute follow-up sessions, $90 and $105 respectively, depending on what your treatment plan should entail as recommended by the pelvic health physiotherapist. Please look at the “Rates” page to find out the rates of all the services we offer.
2) Can I be assessed or receive treatment while on my period?
Yes. Being on your period does not hinder the assessments or treatments that the pelvic floor physiotherapist practices. However, if you do not feel comfortable you may change your appointment but please try to give us at least 24 hours to reschedule the appointment.
3) Can I bring my baby or toddler with me to the session?
Yes, you may. We can accommodate to have your baby in the room while you receive your physio session.
4) I need to reschedule my appointment how do I change my session time?
Yes, please give us a call or leave a message at least 24 hours in advance to change your appointment time or you will be billed. Please be courteous that others in need of pelvic floor physiotherapy services could have been seen during the time slot.
5) Is the internal assessment/treatment required for pelvic floor physiotherapy?
To gather a full understanding of the integrity of the pelvic floor muscles, the gold standard is to include both an internal vaginal and anal examination for women and an internal anal examination for men. However, with this said, there are a lot of treatment techniques that can be performed externally for certain pelvic floor-related conditions and can have good results. Keep in mind though that without an internal examination there is a ‘piece of the puzzle’ missing when we put on our ‘detective hats’ as physios and as we’re trying to come up with a clinical impression of what could be the root of the problem. Thus, it is really to your benefit that the physiotherapist assesses in a global, external, and internal manner to gather a full understanding of the condition, dysfunction, and/or source of pain.
6) Do I need to fill out those questionnaires prior to seeing the pelvic floor physiotherapist?
Yes, we would like you to fill the three questionnaires out (found in the ‘forms’ section under ‘For Patients’) to better understand your pain profile and how the pain has affected you in your day-to-day living. Depending on how you answer can change the course of your treatment plan and how it is delivered to you, this is one additional way on how we customize our services to fit you as a unique individual.
Don’t worry if you have forgotten the forms, come in early for your first appointment and fill these out in our waiting area.
7) Do I need a Doctor’s referral before I see the pelvic floor physiotherapist?
No. Pelvic health physiotherapists are primary health-care providers so you can call us to book an appointment right away! Physiotherapists are trained to recognize any red flags during the initial assessment and future visits, so if you do present with any red flags, the physiotherapist would refer you to a doctor right away.