The pelvic floor is a sling of muscles and ligaments that support key pelvic organs, including the bladder, bowels and the uterus in women.
A strong pelvic floor is critical in preventing and treating issues such as urinary incontinence (for men and women) and pelvic organ prolapse. Anyone who’s ever experienced pelvic pain or pelvic organ prolapse can tell you it’s a frustrating and painful ordeal.
Who it affects
There are many issues that can cause pelvic floor weakness including pregnancy and childbirth, hormonal changes such as menopause, following pelvic surgery, and excessive straining with constipation, coughing or heavy lifting.
It is most commonly seen in women who have been pregnant, regardless of how the child was delivered. The increased weight of the pelvic organs during pregnancy can cause overstretching of the pelvic floor muscles leading to urinary incontinence. Pelvic floor weakness can affect overweight and obese people, as the excess fat that accumulates around the organs can have the same overstretching effect on the pelvic floor. Pelvic floor dysfunction may also occur in men who have undergone prostate surgery.
What we do about it
Pelvic floor dysfunction can be an extremely complex condition to manage, and it is important to consider all contributing medical and lifestyle factors that are involved. At Melbourne Osteohealth our Osteopaths and Exercise Physiologists are skilled in the assessment, treatment and management of this condition.