How does pelvic floor physical therapy work?

Published: April 6, 2022

Strengthening your pelvic floor, How does it work?

Pelvic floor physical therapy is also referred to as physiotherapy for the pelvic region. The pelvic floor muscles or the levator ani muscle group are a group of muscles that enable the different organs in the pelvic region to work efficiently. The muscles of the pelvic floor are attached from the front and back wall of the pelvis and extend to the pubic bone in the front and tail bone (coccyx) in the back.

These muscles support the urinary bladder, uterus, rectum, and bowels. The pelvic floor is mainly made up of involuntary muscles. This means that they are not under the voluntary control of an individual, however, this does not mean that an individual cannot control these muscles; rather it means that the brain does not send signals to these muscles for efficient functioning, it’s almost as if they have a mind of their own.

Pelvic floor therapy is recommended as a first-line remedy for many disorders of the pelvic region, and both men and women with weakness in pelvic floor muscles can perform exercises to strengthen the floor and enhance bladder and bowel control.

When you begin pelvic floor therapy, a physical therapist (PT) will learn more about your symptoms, using the following methods.

  • Your physical therapist will check your core muscles to see how strong they are, along with how much core endurance you have.
  • Your physical therapist will also have you try certain activities and positions to check the coordination of your pelvic floor muscles.
  • Your physical therapist will work with you to perform pelvic floor muscle exercises and teach you about pelvic floor muscle control.

You will likely begin pelvic floor physical therapy with a home exercise program.

At first, your physical therapist will likely recommend that you complete your exercises 3 times a day, 2-3 times a week. As you progress, your physical therapist may change your exercises to 1-2 times a day.

It’s important that you practice your exercises regularly. Be patient, as it may take several weeks to see your improvement.

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