You’ve likely heard of your pelvic floor, but aside from knowing that it’s somewhere in your pelvis, many women aren’t aware of just how important your pelvic health is. Your pelvic floor does a lot for you every day, from helping you stand, helping you control your bladder, and even with helping you achieve orgasm. In addition to its responsibilities with your urination, bowel functions, sexual function, and pregnancy, your pelvic floor also helps keep your intestines, bladder, and reproductive organs in place.
With how much your pelvic floor does for your bodily functions, maintaining good pelvic health is a must. Here is what you need to know about your pelvic floor, the issues that pelvic floor dysfunction causes, and how you can improve your pelvic health.
What Is Your Pelvic Floor?
Your pelvic floor is a web of muscles and connective tissues that is attached to the bones at the bottom – the floor – of your pelvis. These muscles are essential for supporting some of your organs, including your bladder, your colon, your rectum, your vagina, your cervix, and your uterus. It stabilizes your hips and your trunk, which allows you to stand and walk. Your lymphatic system relies on your pelvic floor, as does maintaining continence. Additionally, your pelvic floor’s muscles are what allow you to experience sexual sensation.
What Happens When You Have Pelvic Floor Issues?
There are many things that can negatively affect your pelvic health, such as pregnancy, childbirth, chronic constipation, obesity, heavy lifting, nerve damage, chronic coughing, and straining while going to the bathroom. Anything that causes pressure to be put on your pelvis can lead to pelvic floor disorders and dysfunctions. Problems with your pelvic health can also arise when your pelvic floor is too tight or too loose, too weak, too slow, or not strong or quick enough to function properly.
Issues When Your Pelvic Floor Is Too Tight
There are times when your pelvic floor is too tight. This can result from overtraining your muscles, stress and anxiety, or sexual trauma. Some issues when your pelvic floor is too tight include:
- Pelvic and tailbone pain
- Bladder or bowel dysfunction
- Problems with your hips
- Sexual dysfunction
Issues When Your Pelvic Floor Is Too Loose
There are other times when your pelvic floor is too loose, which can result from being put under undue pressure, such as from pregnancy and childbirth, being overweight, and age. Some issues when your pelvic floor is too loose include:
- Low back pain
- Not being able to orgasm/orgasms being less pleasurable
- Your organs shifting, bulging, or pushing outwards
Since there are so many issues that can arise if your pelvic health is impacted, it’s important to do whatever you can to keep it strong and in good condition.
How Can You Improve Your Pelvic Health?
The same way you can improve your health with a good diet and regular exercise and mental stimulation, there are things that you can do in your day-to-day life to improve your pelvic health. Some of the ways you can improve your pelvic health include:
- Kegel exercises
- Meditation for tight pelvic muscles
- Getting enough fluids, fiber, and exercise to avoid constipation
- Decreasing caffeine, alcohol, and artificial sweeteners intake
- Maintaining a healthy weight
- Not smoking
- Physical therapy
Painful sex, incontinence, pelvic pain, and other issues that can arise from issues with your pelvic health are not something you simply have to live with. These things are not normal and there’s no need for you to grin and bear it. If you’re struggling with pelvic floor issues, treatment can restore your pelvic health and improve your quality of life.
How Physical Therapy Can Improve Your Pelvic Health
Physical therapists can develop treatment programs specific to you that will be able to treat your pelvic floor issues and restore you to good public health. The kind of physical therapy you receive will depend on what your symptoms are and their causes.
Some of the ways physical therapy can treat pelvic floor issues include:
- Relaxation techniques
- Exercises for your pelvic floor muscles
- Exercises to strengthen your core
- Joint mobilization
- Soft tissue mobilization and myofascial release
- Biofeedback techniques
- Education about how diet can impact your pelvic health
- Education about changing behavioral patterns that can be worsening symptoms
- Education about how to use kegel weights, wants, and therapeutic dilators
Wasatch Peak Physical Therapy offers pelvic floor treatments. There’s no need to suffer pelvic floor issues when physical therapy can help. We want to help you improve your pelvic health. Contact us today and let us assist you in restoring your quality of life.