Should I consult with a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist during pregnancy?
If you are experiencing any of the following, consult with a Pelvic Physiotherapist:
- pain in your pubic bone, groin, back, pelvis, buttocks, or legs
- leaking urine, gas, or stool when you laugh, cough, sneeze, or walk
- pain with intercourse
- bulging or tenting of your abdomen when you lift your head off a pillow
- pelvic girdle pain with doing your everyday tasks such as rolling over, walking, or getting in/out of a vehicle
- develop vaginal varicose veins
- any concerns or questions about preparing for labour and delivery
What does the research say about Pelvic Floor muscle training during pregnancy?
Women who did pelvic floor muscle training (PFMT) between 20 and 36 weeks of pregnancy had a lower rate of prolonged second stage labour than women who did no training, less pregnancy-related low back and pelvic pain than those who did no training, less likely to have urinary incontinence at 36 weeks of pregnancy and 3 months post-partum
- The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (UK, 2006) recommends that all women should be taught by a therapist how to perform pelvic floor exercises during their first pregnancy.
- Postnatal Pelvic Floor muscle training significantly reduces urinary incontinence compared to routine postnatal care (Glazener et al 2001, Chiarelli and Cockburn 2002)
Should I consult with a Pelvic Health Physiotherapist Post-Partum?
If you are experiencing any of the following after pregnancy 6 weeks post-partum, consult with a physiotherapist:
- Diastasis recti- separation of the rectus abdominal muscles
- Leaking urine, stool or gas when you cough, sneeze, laugh, exercise, etc
- Pain with intercourse
- C-section scarring, episiotomy or tearing
- Heaviness in your abdomen, pelvis, rectum or vagina
- Pelvic girdle pain
- Difficulty emptying your bowel or bladder
Please take a look on our blog about Pregnancy-related pelvic girdle pain:
One hot pack too many? by Susannah Britnell, PT from British Columbia