What Is Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy?
If you thought specialists like urologists, gynecologists and proctologists were the only health care professionals capable of treating pelvic floor dysfunction, have you ever heard of pelvic floor physiotherapy (also known as pelvic support physiotherapy or pelvic floor physical therapy)?
Pelvic floor muscles work alongside other key muscles to support your lower back, core and joint stability, posture, breathing, digestive process, sexual health, and sexual pleasure. Similar to a hammock, these muscles support your pelvic organs-from your female or male reproductive organs to your urinary bladder, pelvic colon, and rectum.
The ability of the pelvic floor muscles to contract and relax in a healthy way is critical to normal and pain-free bowel, bladder and sexual function. Given that registered physiotherapists are already focused on helping physical bodies recover, improve and maintain muscle function in all stages of healing, integrating pelvic floor physical therapy as yet another highly specialized option at our clinic enables us to treat very specific conditions such as:
- Bladder Leakage
- Overactive bladder
- Urinary incontinence (stress or urge incontinence)
- Urinary hesitancy (or straining)
- Uterine, bladder and rectal prolapse
- Sexual dysfunction (includes erectile dysfunction)
- Pain during intercourse
- Diminished sensory experience during intercourse
- Menstrual cramps
- Pelvic pain
- Prostate pain (or difficulties since a prostate surgery)
- Lower back pain (includes spasms)
- Constipation (or straining)
- Bowel incontinence
Why do I have these conditions or symptoms?
Some of the triggers that could directly or indirectly impact your bladder, bowel and/or sexual health include:
- Giving birth
- Persistent coughing (e.g. bronchitis)
- Weight gain
- Heavy lifting
- A surgery (e.g. prostate, hysterectomy)
- A vigorous sexual experience
- An abusive sexual experience
- Hormonal changes
- Perimenopause or menopause
- A sporting injury (e.g. lower back, groin)
- An accident that impacted your lower back and/or pelvic area
Keep in mind that the trigger could have been very recent, months ago or years ago. Your symptoms may have come on suddenly or gradually. You may not even realize the trigger and your current symptoms are even related.
Ready to feel better? Book an appointment with a pelvic floor physiotherapist.
What about Kegel exercises?
Kegel exercises for women and men can help strengthen pelvic floor muscles, which support the bladder and bowel and can improve sexual function. But are Kegels the right kind of exercise in every case? The answer is no. Often, the pelvic floor holds too much tension and incorporating exercises like Kegels may actually be hindering your recovery.
Working with a pelvic floor physiotherapist can help you discover whether your pelvic dysfunction is related to too much tension, prolonged weakness, laxity, spasms, or other issues.
Talk to an expert. We’re here to help.
Jockvale Massage & Physio’s registered pelvic floor physiotherapist is Rachel Marcotte
To make an appointment with Rachel, call 613-825-3827 or book online.
Do I need a referral from my family doctor?
Physiotherapists, like family doctors, are primary health care providers. Adults of all genders with concerns about their lower back, hip, abdomen, or pelvic area can book an appointment with a pelvic floor physiotherapist at Jockvale Massage & Physio at any time.
You do not need a referral from a doctor, unless you are required to obtain one for insurance purposes.
Is this covered under my extended health insurance?
If you have extended health insurance benefits, we suggest that you call your insurance provider before booking an appointment to confirm your coverage and whether you have, or need to set up, direct billing.
Be sure to bring your extended health information and your physician’s referral (if required). Otherwise, no referral is needed to consult and be treated by a pelvic floor physiotherapist.
What can I expect during my first appointment?
Many of the muscles, tissues and structures in your pelvic area are located inside your body. Therefore, the gold standard for pelvic floor physiotherapy includes internal exams and treatment administered either vaginally or rectally.
With your consent, a vaginal and/or rectal physical exam will be our first recommendation. If you choose not to undergo the internal exam, there are alternative, external physical techniques and exercises that can be used instead.
To make an appointment with Rachel Marcotte, Registered Physiotherapist with specialized training in pelvic floor physiotherapy, call 613-825-3827 or book online.
At Jockvale Massage & Physio, we value your privacy, dignity and comfort no matter what service we provide. We’ll do everything we can to help you start feeling better.