Women’s Pelvic Health

The Female Pelvic Floor

The muscles of the female pelvic floor have 3 main jobs to do – ‘holding everything up’ all day as we move around (this is why they have to work harder during pregnancy), contracting more strongly when the bladder or bowel is full, and the ability to contract strongly when we coughing, sneeze, lift heavy things, high impact sports (think kids trampoline!)

Download our free advice guide written by our own Physiotherapist Diane Wootton about Pelvic Health.

Physiotherapy for women’s pelvic health

Our physiotherapists have specialist knowledge of pelvic health throughout all stages of the life cycle including pregnancy and older women’s health. Whether you are a woman experiencing bladder, bowel or pelvic floor concerns, suffering from back or pelvic pain during pregnancy or as a new mum, then physiotherapy has been proven to provide significant relief. Exercises are an essential part of regaining strength in the pelvic floor muscles.

www.pelvicfloorfirst.org.au has some useful advice and examples of the kind of exercises that Diane may advise.

Postnatal 'M.O.T.' Check Up?

Why would I benefit from an ‘M.O.T.’ postnatal check-up?

1 in 3 women have pelvic health problems during their lifetime. This can be especially common after childbirth.

A Postnatal ‘M.O.T’ Check-Up Assessment with Diane Wootton can help reduce the risk of having problems later in life.

Whether you had a natural uncomplicated delivery, a Caesarean or a traumatic childbirth, understanding how childbirth can effect your body is of benefit from day 1 to get you back to full fitness as quickly as possible. Following childbirth, if the muscles of the tummy and pelvic floor are not strengthened in the right way you could experience:

  • Weak core muscles and joint/ muscle instability
  • Back pain
  • Pelvic Organ Prolapse (POP)
  • Weakness in the pelvic floor
  • Weakness of the Bladder or bowel
  • Chronic pelvic pain or Pelvic girdle pain

Book your 1 hour postnatal assessment check-up with Diane to get her invaluable advice, specifically tailored to your particular needs. Alternatively, chose a course of regular 1 : 1 treatments to give you the confidence that you are ready to get back to your everyday life.

Even if you are not having any difficulties now, with her expert guidance, Diane can give you reassurance that you are doing the right things in the right way to make sure you stay in control of your own body in future.

We are used to having babies and young children in the clinic to make it easier for you to allow yourself the time to have this vital check up.

We also hold Fit backs and bumps for the antenatal and postnatal fitness. Please find out more on our other classes pages from the main menu.

Please call the reception team to book your ‘M.O.T’ Assessment or to talk with Diane. Alternatively, you can email Diane directly at diane.wootton@physiostudio.com for more information.

Pelvic Pain in Pregnancy

What is pelvic pain in Pregnancy?

This painful condition is common through all stages of pregnancy. It can also be known as:

Pregnancy related pelvic girdle pain (PPGP)
or
Symphysis Pubis Dysfunction (SPD)

This term describes a pain experienced in the joints around the pelvic area during pregnancy or after childbirth. Although this pain is not harmful to your baby, it can make doing things in everyday life much more difficult.

Why does it happen?

During pregnancy and childbirth, the joints around the pelvis and lower back move in a different way as they are put under greater loads and stresses. During pregnancy, hormonal changes can cause a slackening of the soft tissues in the back and pelvis that normally support these joints. This means that the muscles of the pelvic floor can find it harder to control these movements which can lead to quite severe pain, or a grinding or clicking in the pelvis.

This is especially common during some movements:

  • walking
  • going upstairs
  • standing on one leg (for example, when you’re getting dressed)
  • turning over in bed
  • getting out of a car

Where might I feel the pain?
  • Going down into either side of their pelvis or their legs.
  • Between their legs (in the perineum).
  • On the centre of the pubic bone.
How can physiotherapy help me?

Our specialist pelvic health physiotherapist Diane Wootton or our team of manual physiotherapists can assess and provide a treatment programme specifically tailored to your particular stage of pregnancy or post natal period.

There are many treatments that have been shown to be effective which include:-

  • Acupuncture
  • Manual Therapy
  • Exercises to stabilise the pelvis
  • Pain relief advice
  • Advice on techniques to minimise the painful movements and positions
  • Use of supports or other equipment

Please call the reception team to book an appointment or email: diane.wootton@physiostudio.com to ask about your particular needs.

Acupuncture in Women's health

Acupuncture in Pregnancy

Acupuncture in Pregnancy is a safe a gentle treatment option which can help ease the following conditions:

  • Lower back pain
  • Pubic Symphysis Dysfunction (PSD)
  • Pelvic girdle pain
  • Sciatica
  • Heartburn
  • Malposition of foetus (including breech, posterior positioning and transverse)
  • Haemorrhoids/vulval variscosities
  • Varicose veins
  • Morning sickness (nausea and vomiting)
How can Acupuncture during Pregnancy help me?

There are many ways that Acupuncture can help the birthing process and relieve pain.

  • Pregnancy Acupuncture can be helpful as a natural pain relief to relieve symptoms of pelvic girdle pain.
  • Pre-birth Acupuncture from 35 weeks gestation is very effective at optimising natural childbirth.
  • Acupressure point stimulation during the delivery can also provide natural pain relief (through stimulation of the body’s natural opiates/endorphins) and help optimise natural child-birthing processes.
  • Postnatal Acupuncture can also be helpful after the birth for natural pain relief.

As well as Diane Wootton, Claire McLauchlan also practises ‘Acupuncture in Pregnancy’ and Claire found it especially beneficial herself during her twins pregnancy.

Please call our reception team to book an appointment or email claire.mclauchlan@physiostudio.com to ask about your particular needs.

Acupuncture during the Menopause

Menopause usually affects women around the age of 50 and can have some unpleasant side effects.

Through effective physiotherapy, we can help manage symptoms such as hot flushes, fatigue and hormonal imbalances.

Please call the reception team to book an appointment or email: diane.wootton@physiostudio.com to ask about your particular needs.

Older Women's Health

Older women’s pelvic health

Older women can experience all of the problems related to a weak pelvic floor which may include bladder or bowel concerns or changes following a hysterectomy or pelvic surgery.

What symptoms could I experience?
  • Bladder or urinary incontinence
  • Bowel incontinence
  • A feeling of having ‘bulge’ in the vagina?
  • A general discomfort in the pelvic area?
  • A ‘pulling’ sensation in the pelvis?

These troublesome symptoms could be as a result of a chronic weakness of the pelvic floor or prolapse of the pelvic organs (POP) due to pelvic surgery or a previous traumatic childbirth.

These problems are very common but can have a significant effect on a woman’s quality of life. They can be rectified via physiotherapy or in some cases surgical intervention. Where surgery is required, physiotherapy is an essential element in the recovery process and can be invaluable in providing significant relief to help you improve your quality of life.

Please call the reception team to book an appointment or email: diane.wootton@physiostudio.com to discuss your particular needs.

Chronic Pelvic pain in women

Chronic pelvic pain/ Pelvic pain syndrome in women
What is it?

Chronic pelvic pain describes the pain women can experience around the pelvic area which has lasted longer than 3 months.

Pelvic floor dysfunction in both men and women can be myofascial (i.e. within muscles and tissues) and clients may have some exquisitely tender areas within the muscles known as trigger points.

Where would I feel the pain?
  • Some people have localised pain in the pelvic/ pubic area.
  • Some people have pain radiating out to the pelvic/ abdominal area.
  • A burning sensation on passing urine
  • Increased muscle tension around the pelvic area

Chronic pelvic pain may be caused by a number of reasons both bladder and bowel related, but sometimes the pain may have other origins.

One of the origins of this type of pain can be a tightness of the pelvic floor muscles causing them to be held in constant spasm, just like having a permanently clenched fist. This constant tightness then causes a dysfunction of not just the pelvic floor muscles but also other related structures around the pelvic girdle.

How can Physiotherapy help me?

Physiotherapy aims to reduce muscle tension in the pelvic area and calm the tender areas that are ‘too ready’ to send pain signals. These symptoms can respond well if carried out and demonstrated by a specialist pelvic health physiotherapist. This can include (based on Cochrane review recommendations);

  • Massage and stretches
  • Trigger point and muscle tension release techniques
  • Acupuncture
  • Stretches
  • Exercises
  • Manual therapy
  • Coccyx mobilisation
  • Biofeedback
  • Stabilising and strengthening exercises
  • Lifestyle changes
  • Relaxation

Chronic pelvic pain treatment is available by Diane Wootton, our clinical specialist physiotherapist and is usually covered by any Health Insurance policy you may have.

Please call the reception team or email:diane.wootton@physiostudio.com to discuss your particular needs.