Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
Pelvic Floor Therapy for Men and Women in Central Oregon
For many, topics surrounding pelvic health are better left unsaid. Yet, people who do talk about it are often surprised to realize how common these problems are. Statistics show 1 in 5 individuals experience pelvic floor dysfunction of some type at some point in their life. Although we primarily hear about women having pelvic floor dysfunctions, both men and women experience pelvic health difficulties.
Pelvic floor dysfunction is a broad term that refers to problems that can arise from pelvic floor muscles that are weak, tight, a combination of both, or have poor coordination contributing to bowel or bladder dysfunction. For women, it is often related to hormonal changes, pregnancy and childbirth, menopausal changes, stress, and chronic constipation. For men, it can be related to heavy lifting, stress, prostate changes, obesity, chronic constipation, or trauma.
Common pelvic dysfunctions include:
- Urinary leakage/incontinence
- Urinary urgency and frequency or overactive bladder syndrome
- Prolapse of the bladder, uterus, or rectum
- Painful intercourse
- Pelvic girdle pain, SI joint dysfunction, or low back pain
- Coccyx pain
- Diastasis Recti
- Postpartum recovery
- Changes related to menopause
- Chronic constipation
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome
- Prostate cancer and post-prostatectomy
- Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
What is the Pelvic Floor?
The pelvic floor has five functions in both men and women. These functions include:
- Support – The pelvic floor supports the pelvic organs, bladder, and colon.
- Sexual – Important in arousal and orgasm
- Sphincteric – The pelvic floor stops and starts the flow of urine
- Stabilize – Stabilizing the hips, back, and sacrum during movement is a key function of the pelvic floor.
- “Sump pump” – The pelvic floor helps promote improved lymphatic and venous circulation of the pelvis and lower extremities.
Step & Spine Physical Therapy has therapists who specialize in pelvic floor dysfunction. These therapists will discuss your concerns, review your history, and assess the strength, endurance, coordination, and tone of your pelvic floor to determine how well it’s supporting you.
Using Biofeedback in Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy
Our physical therapists can gather additional information on how well your pelvic floor muscles are working using a device called biofeedback. Biofeedback allows both the PT and the patient to visually see when the pelvic floor muscles are working and how well they are working. It also allows you to see when they are overactive, which is often the case with pelvic pain disorders and overactive bladder. Once your physical therapist gathers this information, treatment can begin.
About Our Pelvic Floor Therapy Program
Depending on the unique needs of the individual, pelvic floor therapy may include:
- Pelvic floor exercises to do at home, personalized to you
- Manual therapy
- Mindfulness and breathing training
- Bladder/bowel training
Your pelvic floor dysfunction team includes:
Brittany Estuesta, PT, DPT
Emily Bliss, PT, DPT
Success Story: Sara had 20 years of incontinence issues. As a lifelong athlete, these problems impeded her ability to do the things she wanted. Fed up and ready for a solution, Sara began pelvic floor physical therapy with Brittany Estuesta, PT, DPT. After just four visits, Sara had zero leakage with running!
Like Sara, pelvic floor physical therapy can be a game-changer. Regardless of how the problem began, symptom improvement can occur in just a few visits for many common pelvic health conditions. The first step to relief is making a phone call to schedule an evaluation with a pelvic floor physical therapist.
If you are ready to find out how we can help you get back to doing the things you love, give us a call.
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