Women and Men's Pelvic Health
General knowledge about the pelvic floor is often synonymous with the ‘kegel’, the pelvic floor strengthening exercise that can be done to address leakage. Kegels do play an important part in maintaining pelvic floor health for both men and women, if strengthening the pelvic floor is indicated. But did you know that strengthening your pelvic floor is not always the solution to pelvic floor dysfunction? In some cases, it can make symptoms worse or be ineffective, leading to feelings of frustration.
Just like other muscles in the body, the pelvic floor can become tight, and as a result, become dysfunctional. A tight pelvic floor can give rise to a host of issues, including pelvic pain, urinary urgency, constipation and sexual dysfunction. So what are solutions to addressing a tight pelvic floor?
The gold standard is to have a pelvic floor assessment by a trained pelvic floor physiotherapist to determine how your muscles are functioning.
Pelvic floor physiotherapists will often use manual techniques to release the pelvic floor followed with exercises and stretches to maintain these results. Biofeedback or real-time ultrasound are also techniques used to provide feedback and assist in relaxing the pelvic floor. The Therawand is an excellent tool that can be used at home to complement a program designed to relax and balance the pelvic floor musculature. With its unique design and with guidance from a physiotherapist, using the therawand can assist in achieving your best results and ultimately, restoring optimal pelvic floor function. Ask about the Therawand today to see if it’s a right fit for you!
Samantha Doralp, PhD, PT
About the Author
Samantha Doralp, MPT, BAHonsKin, Cert. MDT is a registered physiotherapist who graduated with a Master of Physical Therapy from the University of Western Ontario, Canada in 2005, following completion of a Bachelor of Arts in Honours Kinesiology in 2003, also from Western.
In addition to her Masters in Physical Therapy, she holds a doctorate in Rehabilitation Sciences specializing in early motor development and a Masters in Neuroscience. She continues to advance her practice, including having completed post-graduate certifications in pelvic floor Physiotherapy as well as therapeutic techniques applicable to her work with children.