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add pelvic floor physical therapy to your healthcare routine
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VeryWell Health author Claire Wolters reached out to with the question "should you add pelvic floor physical therapy to your healthcare routine?", and of course I was more than glad to lend my expertise. Here is a synposis of the article with my further comments interspersed in italics. A link to the full article is included below.

Heather Jeffcoat, DPT

Should You Add Pelvic Floor Physical Therapy to Your Healthcare Routine?

What Causes Pelvic Floor Problems?

Pelvic floor dysfunction tends to occur with age, during pregnancy, or in tandem with life events linked to plummeting hormone levels, such as the postpartum period and menopause. (Pelvic floor issues can also arise from injuries due to accidents or chronic stress, but regardless of the cause we have a number of treatments and modalities that can help.)

People who are pregnant are especially prone to pelvic floor problems during their pregnancy and later in life, Heather Jeffcoat, DPT, a pelvic floor physical therapist and founder of Femina Physical Therapy, told Verywell. That's because of the weight of a pregnant person's uterus, which can put pressure on and strain their pelvic floor muscles. Vaginal childbirth can also stretch the muscles.

People who experience these types of problems during pregnancy are more likely to experience more pelvic floor problems postpartum or even years down the line, Jeffcoat said.

Pelvic floor dysfunction is increased in anybody that is pregnant, but people might not necessarily know that they have a problem," Jeffcoat added. "They might normalize things [or think] they will get better after delivering—which is not necessarily true."

Symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction may include:

  • Urinary or stool leakage or incontinence
  • Constipation
  • Pain in the pelvis region
  • Back pain
  • Painful urination
  • Painful sex

If left untreated, problems can worsen over time. (Fortunately awareness of pelvic floor dysfunction is on the rise amongst the larger health community.)

It's just a matter of time until people begin to present with sexual pain, urinary incontinence, prolapse, or back pain due to pelvic floor dysfunction," Jeffcoat said. "Pelvic PT should be a part of general wellness visits to catch dysfunction early, and help set patients up better for the rest of their lives."

She recommends that women and people with vaginas schedule at least three pelvic floor physical therapy appointments during pregnancy, at least one during the postpartum period, and at least one at the onset of menopause.

Go here access the full article at the Verywell Health website, and go here if you are ready to take the plunge with one of our licensed physical therapists.

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What Our Patients Have to Say


Testimonial by R.D., age 38

"I had a severe tear during childbirth that was not stitched together correctly and therefore healed poorly. Even after having a surgery a year later to remove the scar tissue, I was still having pain, and no one could explain why -- there was no overt 'reason' to explain the pain. I had tried other 'specialists' and even saw another physical therapist who had me do hip / leg stretches -- what a joke! I was about to give up and just 'live with it' until thankfully I kept searching online and found Heather.

Read more: Testimonial by R.D., age 38

Testimonial by S.H., age 24

I just wanted to thank you for everything you've done for me for the past 19 months. I literally could not have reached my goals without you and your practice. You gave me the courage to keep moving forth with my treatment no matter how afraid and anxious I was. You were always there to answer questions and made this whole process so much easier than I expected it to be.

It's because of you that my marriage is on the right track, that I can get pregnant and that this part of my life is finally over. I really feel that Fusion Wellness is a team of people you can call family and are there to root for you and cheer you on until you reach your goals. There is nothing better than knowing I accomplished this with you guys by my side and as calmly and patiently as I needed. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for always being there and helping me reach my goals.

S.H., age 24

Testimonial by J.H.

My last appointment with Heather was over 6 years ago but I still think of her every day. I don’t take for granted that I can easily get out of bed, care for my two active and busy young boys, run, play tennis, clean my house, or sit at a desk for several hours at a time. None of these tasks were easy for me before meeting Heather. Eight years ago my car was struck from behind by a tractor trailer that was estimated to have been speeding. I spent 3 years working with different PTs and Drs trying to heal and move on with my life. When I became pregnant and the hormone relaxin that “relaxes” all the joints of the body and the additional weight gain erased all my progress and I was suddenly in a lot of pain again. My OB sent me to Heather for one last try.

Read more: Testimonial by J.H.

Testimonial by S.P., Age 26

I would like to start off by thanking Heather Jeffcoat for educating me and curing me of Vaginismus. I had been married for almost three years before I was referred to Heather. I never knew about Vaginismus until almost three years into my marriage. I knew something was wrong when I went on my honeymoon and came back a Virgin. I had always imagined how magical my first night would be but boy was I wrong.

Read more: Testimonial by S.P., Age 26

Testimonial by M.N., age 28

A personal journey and testimonial from one of my patients:

I was diagnosed with vaginismus 4 years ago. I never heard of such medical condition until after I got married. At first my husband and I didn't know what to do, we didn't know what the issues were or how to overcome it. Being born and raised in Armenia and being Christian I wasn't that open about talking to sex with others and so it wasn't easy to seek help. But eventually I went to an Ob-Gyn and luckily she knew about the medical condition (not many doctors know). She referred me to a physical therapist and I couldn't believe it and thought it's something I can handle myself. I ordered a kit from vaginismus.com and started practicing with dilators. There was some small progress but wasn't much helpful.

Read more: Testimonial by M.N., age 28

Testimonial by S.B.

As someone who suffered the debilitating physical and emotional effects of vaginismus (as well as a complicated history of back injuries) for more than 15 years, I thought a "normal" life was just a fantasy. Then I found Heather.

Read more: Testimonial by S.B.

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