What is Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy?

Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy is a post-graduate area of physiotherapy that can be used to help manage and treat a variety of conditions including: incontinence, pelvic pain, pelvic organ prolapse, or pregnancy related pain.

Your pelvic floor muscles help to support your pelvic organs and play an important role in sexual function, as well as maintaining bowel and bladder continence and elimination. Weakness or increased tension in your pelvic floor muscles can cause or contribute to many symptoms including pain, constipation, prolapse, urine leakage, or an increased urge or frequency to go to the washroom.

Pelvic floor physiotherapy can be used as a way to help manage symptoms through relaxation or strengthening of the pelvic floor, education, and hands-on therapy. Your pelvic floor physiotherapist will assess your pelvic floor muscles externally and/or internally to help determine the appropriate exercises and treatment to create an individually tailored, evidence-based program to help with your symptoms.

What can pelvic floor physiotherapy help with?

Research shows that pelvic floor physiotherapy is highly effective as a first-line, conservative management strategy for the following:

  • Urinary incontinence (stress incontinence, urge incontinence, overactive bladder, and increased urinary frequency, and leakage)

  • Pelvic organ prolapse

  • Pelvic pain management

  • Pain with intercourse

  • Prenatal and Postnatal concerns or treatment

  • Persistent low back or sacroiliac joint pain

  • Chronic constipation

  • Post-surgery rehabilitation (hysterectomy, C-section, prostatectomy)

What types of treatment can you expect?

  • Individually tailored exercises

  • Client education

  • Manual therapy

  • Activity modification strategies

  • Pain management techniques

  • Safe progression and return to exercise and activities

Common FAQs

Who is appropriate for pelvic floor physiotherapy?
Pelvic floor physiotherapy is appropriate for both women and men experiencing any of the symptoms or conditions listed above. There is no upper age limit on who may benefit from receiving pelvic floor physiotherapy, although our therapists do not currently work with children experiencing pelvic floor issues.

Is pelvic floor physiotherapy safe during pregnancy?
Yes! As long as you are cleared by your doctor to still engage in intercourse it is safe to have pelvic floor physiotherapy during pregnancy. For safety, it is typically recommended to wait until after the first trimester in pregnancy before starting pelvic physiotherapy. Postpartum it is recommended to wait 6 weeks (or until cleared by GP/obstetrician) before starting pelvic floor physiotherapy.

I only have symptoms with running or exercise, will I still benefit from pelvic floor physiotherapy?
Yes! Our clinicians can work with you to create an individualized program to help with symptoms during exercise to help get you back to the activities you love, whether that be running, weight-lifting, or just playing with your kids at the park. Our therapists can also help with a safe return to exercise program postpartum.

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