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Physical therapy for pelvic floor dysfunction

What is pelvic floor dysfunction?

A group of muscles at the base of the pelvic area, the pelvic floor supports and controls the pelvic organs, including the rectum, bladder, uterus, vagina, and prostate.

Those who suffer from pelvic floor dysfunction are unable to properly contract and relax this group of muscles, which can interfere with urination and bowel movements. Many patients frequently suffer from incomplete bowel movements, discomfort during sexual intercourse, and urine or stool retention.

While pelvic floor dysfunction is often associated with pregnant women, both men and women (whether pregnant or not) can develop the condition. Left untreated, pelvic floor dysfunction can lead to chronic discomfort, infection, and in rare cases long-term damage to the colon.

Source: Cleveland Clinic

Pelvic floor dysfunction symptoms

The symptom most closely associated with pelvic floor dysfunction is general pain or discomfort in the region of the pelvic floor. Patients experiencing the symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction may also face difficulty evacuating bowel movements, pain during intercourse, or spasms (a.k.a. “knots”) in the muscles of the pelvic floor.

The most common symptoms of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction include:

  • Urinary issues (the frequent urge to urinate or painful urination)
  • Pain in the lower back, pelvic region, genitals, or rectum
  • Pressure in the pelvic region or rectum
  • Muscle spasms in the pelvic region
  • Constipation or bowel strains
  • Pain or discomfort during intercourse (for women)
  • Erectile dysfunction (for men)

Source: Healthline

What causes pelvic floor dysfunction?

The causes of pelvic floor dysfunction are not precisely known; however, the condition is typically linked to events or conditions that weaken the pelvic floor muscles and/or produce tears in the connective tissue. Factors that put pressure on the pelvic floor or injure the pelvic muscles are known contributors to the eventual development of pelvic floor dysfunction.

The most common causes of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction include:

  • Pregnancy and childbirth
  • Age
  • Nerve damage
  • Obesity
  • Traumatic injury to the pelvic region

Source: NICHD and Healthline

Physical therapy for pelvic floor dysfunction

Physical therapy is the go-to treatment for pelvic floor dysfunction. The most common pelvic floor dysfunction treatment is biofeedback, which is performed with the help of a physical therapist. A painless, non-invasive physical therapy technique, biofeedback has been shown to help more than 75% of those who suffer from pelvic floor dysfunction.

During biofeedback exercises, the physical therapist will use sensors and video to monitor the pelvic floor muscles as the patient attempts to contract and release them. The therapist then provides verbal feedback to help the patient improve his or her muscle coordination. The physical therapist may also recommend relaxation exercises, including yoga and meditation, to help relax the pelvic floor muscles.

Source: Cleveland Clinic

The best pelvic floor dysfunction
physical therapists in the Bay Area

Luna employs bay-area-based physical therapists with experience and expertise in the treatment of pelvic floor dysfunction. Our certified physical therapists manage the symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction with cutting-edge exercises that can help to reduce constipation and increase patient control over their pelvic floor.

Best of all, with Luna, patients can receive treatment in the comfort, familiarity, and privacy of their own homes. Our physical therapists come to you: It’s physical therapy, delivered.

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