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Pelvic Floor Therapy for Treatment of Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence is a topic that many people shy away from discussing, but it’s more common than you might think. Did you know that about 1 in 3 women experience urinary incontinence at some point in their lives? This condition can be just an occasional leak; but for many, it can be a frequent and distressing problem. Despite its prevalence, many women feel embarrassed to talk about it and often suffer in silence. That’s why we ask each and every one of our patients about symptoms of urgency or leaking - yes, even if it is just when you sneeze.

Understanding Urinary Incontinence

Urinary incontinence refers to the involuntary leakage of urine, a condition that affects millions of women worldwide. While it can occur for various reasons, common factors contributing to urinary incontinence in women include childbirth, hormonal changes, aging, obesity, and certain medical conditions.

Ultimately, urinary incontinence is often a symptom of pressure mismanagement within the abdominal cavity. The pelvic floor, diaphragm, and abdominal muscles need to work together to maintain proper pressure and support the bladder. When this balance is disrupted—whether through childbirth, surgery, chronic coughing, or even improper breathing techniques—the result can be urinary incontinence.

The Financial and Emotional Impact of Incontinence

Here at Gaia Women’s Physical Therapy, we’ve heard the stories of many women who have been struggling with symptoms of incontinence for months or even years. Urinary incontinence can have significant financial and emotional impact on the lives of women.

  • Financial Costs: Managing incontinence can be costly. From purchasing pads and special underwear to seeking medical treatments and medications, the expenses can add up quickly. The National Association for Continence reports that women with incontinence spend an average of $750 yearly managing urinary incontinence. 

  • Emotional Toll: The emotional burden of urinary incontinence can be even greater. Many women feel ashamed or embarrassed, leading to a decrease in social activities and quality of life. It’s not uncommon to experience feelings of isolation, anxiety, and depression.

Recognizing these impacts is crucial because they highlight the importance of seeking help and finding effective treatments for urinary incontinence as early as possible.

Pelvic Physical Therapy for Urinary Incontinence

At Gaia Physical Therapy, we take a comprehensive and holistic approach to pelvic floor therapy, recognizing that urinary incontinence is often influenced by a combination of factors. Our personalized treatment plans address the following key aspects:

  • Pressure Management: We educate women on how to manage intra-abdominal pressure during activities to minimize stress on the pelvic floor muscles, reducing the likelihood of leakage.

  • Dietary Adjustments: Certain foods and beverages can irritate the bladder or act as diuretics, exacerbating urinary incontinence symptoms. Our therapists provide guidance on dietary modifications to support bladder health and control.

  • Pelvic Floor Coordination & Strength: Coordination of the pelvic floor muscles is essential for maintaining urinary continence. A pelvic floor therapist can determine the strength, mobility, and coordination of your pelvic floor muscles.  Through targeted exercises and techniques, we help women improve muscle tone and control, promoting better bladder control.

  • Healthy Habits and Routines: Lifestyle factors such as hydration, toileting habits, and posture can impact urinary continence. We work with women to develop habits and routines that support optimal pelvic health and bladder control.

Pelvic physical therapist treating urinary incontinence
Pelvic PT, Maggie, teaching a patient with urinary incontinence how to manage pressure, strengthen, abdominals, and have coordination over their pelvic floor

How Gaia Women’s Physical Therapy and Wellness can Help You with Urinary Incontinence 

Urinary incontinence is a common and often challenging issue for many women, but effective treatment options are available. Pelvic floor therapy services offer a holistic approach to addressing urinary incontinence, focusing on pressure management, dietary adjustments, muscle strength and coordination, and healthy habits and routines.

If you're experiencing symptoms of urinary incontinence, don't hesitate to reach out to the experienced team at Gaia Women's Physical Therapy. Together, we can develop a personalized treatment plan to help you regain control over your pelvic health and live a life free from the limitations of urinary incontinence. To book your initial assessment click HERE.

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