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Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

What is Pelvic Floor Dysfunction?

This refers to inability to correctly contract and relax the muscles of the pelvic floor, which provide support to the bladder, rectum, uterus and prostate. A good pelvic floor function allows you to control bowel movements, urination and sexual intercourse.

What are the common pelvic floor conditions that lead to pelvic floor dysfunction?

  • stress incontinence
  • Urge incontinence
  • Urgency (overactive bladder)
  • Antenatal care
  • Postnatal care
  • Vaginal prolapse
  • Pelvic pain
  • Faecal incontinence
  • Bowel conditions like¬†constipation

Can physiotherapy help people with pelvic floor dysfunction?

Yes. Physiotherapy is a proven treatment option for pelvic floor dysfunction and a pelvic physiotherapist is the best practitioner to discuss your condition with, who will carry out a comprehensive assessment on your and provide individualised treatment plans to manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life.

What are the causes of pelvic floor dysfunction?

  • Childbirth

  • Pelvic surgery

  • Obesity

  • Traumatic injury to the pelvic region

  • Nerve damage

  • Repeated actions of straining

  • Chronic cough

  • Changes in hormone levels at menopause

  • Pregnancy

  • Poor core muscle strength

  • Persistent heavy lifting

  • A lack of general fitness

What are the symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction?

  • The feeling that you need to have several bowel movements during a short period of time

  • The feeling that you cannot complete a bowel movement

  • Constipation, or straining pain with bowel movements

  • Leakage of stool/urine with or without your awareness

  • A frequent need to urinate. When you do go, you may stop and start many times

  • Painful urination

  • Pain in your lower back that cannot be explained by other causes

  • Ongoing pain in your pelvic region, genitals, or rectum with or without a bowel movement

  • Pain during intercourse (experienced by women)

  • Muscle spasms in the pelvis

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