Caring for your pelvic floor
- accidentally leak urine when you exercise, play sport, laugh, cough or sneeze?
- rush to the toilet but not make it there in time?
- constantly need to go to the toilet?
- have difficulty emptying your bladder or bowel?
- accidentally lose control of your bowel or pass wind?
- have a prolapse (pressure, bulging or discomfort in the pelvic area)?
- experience pelvic pain or painful sex?
You are not alone, and all these symptoms are treatable.
Your pelvic floor plays a very important, often unnoticed role in our daily life. When functioning well, it supports the base of our abdomen and wonderfully controls our necessary bladder, bowel and sexual functions. If not well controlled, dysfunction can lead to loss of bladder or bowel control and prolapse. Age and physical stressors such as pregnancy, menopause and gynaecological surgery can affect pelvic floor function. A women’s health physiotherapist can assess your continence symptoms and give treatment advice to vastly improve your quality of life.
Annabel Butler is our Leap Health go-to physiotherapist for women’s health services including; continence issues, pre and post natal pelvic floor assessments, pregnancy related pain conditions (e.g. pelvic pain, back pain) and abdominal separation concerns (rectus diastases).
She is also able to guide you with safe pre and post natal exercises, to ensure the function of your pelvic floor is optimised during and after pregnancy. Having physiotherapy input to help care for your pelvic floor before, during and after pregnancy can give you peace of mind and a sense of control over your body.
Returning to sport, running or high impact activities earl after child birth can actually be counter-productive. Pelvic floor muscle strength loss may occur, and result in long-term bladder and bowel problems or pelvic organ prolapse. For this reason, careful consideration and guidance from a women’s health physiotherapist can minimise the risk.
For more information about pelvic floor exercises, pelvic floor safe exercise options, postnatal abdominal muscle bracing and where to get help for pelvic floor problems, check out:
National Continence Helpline – 1800 33 00 66