As a Certified Women’s Health Specialist, I see women for a number of concerns that are primarily related to having given birth. The frustrating part of this is that we, as a society, do NOTHING to prevent women from developing these conditions postpartum. Some of the issues women develop postpartum are urinary incontinence (leaking urine), fecal incontinence (leaking stool), painful intercourse, back, hip or pelvic pain, Diastasis Recti (abdominal wall separation) and organ prolapse. In the US, women are sent home with baby, but with very little guidance on how to care for themselves or how to return to functional activity and exercise. Often, pelvic problems worsen due to this lack of knowledge and guidance.
PostPartum Doesn’t Have to Equal Incontinence
At Foundational Concepts, Specialty Physical Therapy, our specialists in pelvic dysfunction and women’s health can help with just that. We provide a thorough examination to determine how you, individually, can regain muscle strength, function and coordination. We can also help you to stop leaking, improve prolapse, return to exercise and daily life tasks, and enjoy sex again. As women we have been conditioned to accept the mindset of, “Well, I’ve had a baby so…” So… What!? Just like any muscle/tissue injury, you can heal from pregnancy and childbirth. We can guide you in a safe, effective manner that will have you running, jumping and laughing without any worries.
PostPartum Trauma to Muscles
While the childbirth experience can be amazing, it can also be traumatic. Either way, the abdominal wall and pelvic floor undergo physiological changes and tissue injury that need proper attention to rehabilitate. Just like when you tear a muscle or ligament and receive physical therapy to return to activities, we should give our mamas the same attention after baby. This is important not only for muscle and tissue rehabilitation, but also to educate women about how to care for themselves during this time of healing.
Why see a women’s health specialist after delivery? I feel very strongly that every woman should see a physical therapist trained in post-partum care after their 6 week check up with their physician or midwife. Let’s talk about the top five reasons. First, the trauma to the pelvic floor muscles. Second, the possibility of pelvic girdle pain and dysfunction. Third, Diastasis Rectus abdominus is present in 100% of women in the third trimester and may stick around after baby. Fourth, pelvic organ prolapse is present in 50 % of women after delivery. Lastly, hormonal changes and physiological changes of pregnancy make returning to exercise like an athlete coming back after injury. Guidance with a women’s health specialist will ensure safe and proper function of your pelvic floor and core. It will also reduce injury or further exacerbation of issues like prolapse and incontinence.
At Foundational Concepts we offer a free, 15-minute postpartum consultation to screen for Diastasis, Core function and Pelvic girdle dysfunction. We can answer any questions about postpartum healing and give you the power of knowledge to recover safe and healthy. We want you to be able to care for those little ones you love so dearly.
Visit our website, follow us on Facebook and Twitter, or call us! We would love to help you achieve your postpartum goals.