Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
The pelvic floor or pelvic diaphragm is composed of a group of muscles and connective tissue at the bottom of our pelvis acting as a support for the organs in your pelvis – including the bladder, rectum, and uterus (women) or prostate (men). These muscles are responsible for our control over bowel movements, urination, as well as sexual intercourse. Pelvic Floor dysfunction (PFD) is the inability to control the muscles of your pelvic floor. There may be weakness, increased muscle tension, or difficulty with coordination of these muscles. Pelvic floor rehabilitation is a conservative approach to treating a variety of conditions such as pelvic organ prolapse, hip, back, or pelvic pain, urinary incontinence, dyspareunia, coccydynia and more.
How can physical therapy help?
A pelvic floor physical therapist at i’move will focus on you as a whole person. They will thoroughly assess and treat your needs in a separate, private area of the office so you can have freedom from pain and promote well-being. Through a combination of manual therapy, functional exercise and education, together we can develop strategies to help you move, lift, squat, and live your life.
At i’move we offer:
Frequently Asked Questions
What should I expect on my first visit?
Your first visit will be a 40-minute evaluation with a trained women’s health physical therapist. We will begin by getting to know you, listening to your goals, your medical history, and any specific challenges that you are facing. We will then move on to the physical examination, including assessment of body movement, functional mechanics, posture, strength, fascial and muscle balance. From this information, we will determine if an internal pelvic floor exam is indicated. If we believe that this is an important part of your care, we will discuss this with you and only proceed with your full verbal consent. We will recommend an individualized plan of care and discuss follow-up visits, treatments, and home exercises.
What should I wear to my first physical therapy appointment?
Wear anything that you are comfortable in. Most women find that a pair of yoga pants or leggings are most comfortable or other movement friendly clothing.
Will I have a private space?
Yes, we have a private women’s health room that is a space for just us gals.
How often do I need to be seen?
We will discuss a plan of care based on your unique situation; however, most recommended plans of care will be 1-2x/week.
Will I need an internal pelvic exam?
On your first visit, we will spend time learning about your history, addressing your concerns, and hearing your goals. After we discuss and evaluate your unique situation, we will determine together if we need to proceed with an internal pelvic exam. Many treatments do not necessitate an internal examination. If we believe that this is an important part of your care, we will discuss this with you and only proceed with your full verbal consent.
What is an internal pelvic exam?
An internal pelvic floor assessment is beneficial to assess the ability of your pelvic floor muscles to contract and relax and coordinate movements. Just like any other area of the body, the pelvic floor is a group of muscles that helps to provide our body with support and it assists with specific functions. An internal pelvic exam is way easier and more comfortable than a pap smear, as we are using a single gloved finger for our assessment. In most cases this is painless. We don’t use any cold stirrups or devices that you may have experienced at your OB’s office. If at any time you are uncomfortable with the assessment or treatment, we fully respect your decision to decline an internal assessment.
Will an internal exam hurt?
For most women, no, an internal assessment by a physical therapist should not hurt. You and your physical therapist will discuss the anatomy of the pelvic floor and the specific muscles that make up this area. You will feel some light pressure with our examination, and we are continually encouraging communication with your physical therapist to discuss treatment techniques and to ensure that you are fully informed and comfortable throughout your visit.