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Pregnancy and childbirth are periods in a woman’s life that involve many physical changes over a relatively short time period. The biomechanical and hormonal changes that occur over this period can lead to muscle and joint aches and pains and/or pelvic floor conditions.

Women’s health physiotherapists are well equipped to treat many of these conditions. Your women’s health physiotherapist will quickly identify the source of your problem and aid you in resolving your symptoms.

Common pre and postnatal conditions include:

  • Low back pain
  • Pelvic girdle pain
  • Mid back and rib pain
  • Wrist pain
  • Abdominal separation
  • Constipation
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Perineal tears
  • Pelvic organ prolapse

Assessment of any pelvic floor related conditions (incontinence, perineal tears, prolapse, constipation) typically involves the following:

  • Taking an extensive history of your bladder and bowel function, gynaecological and obstetric history, sexual function and any other ongoing medical conditions
  • An internal examination is the gold standard for objectively assessing pelvic floor muscle function. This involves the physiotherapist using a gloved finger to check the position of the pelvic organs and check the quality and strength of the pelvic floor muscles by palpating these structures through the walls of the vagina
  • The physiotherapist will strive to ensure you remain comfortable throughout the consult and you always have the ultimate decision on whether you wish to have an internal examination completed

Treatments we use:

  • Mobilisastion to recover lost range of movement
  • Soft tissue releases of ligament and muscle tissue
  • Use of tape, braces or supportive garments to provide better support to injured structures
  • Advice on modification of activities that may be aggravating symptoms
  • Provision of a tailored pelvic floor muscle exercise program (for pelvic floor conditions)
  • Guidance of safe and appropriate exercise for during and after pregnancy

Further management
If your women’s health physiotherapist deems your condition to require further management beyond the scope of physiotherapy, they will liaise with your GP in order to ensure you are receiving the best possible care.