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  • Writer's pictureErin

I Have A What?! What is Pelvic Floor?

Updated: Mar 23

May 16, 2023

Erin MS Warner

A lot of people are talking about the pelvic floor. Sounds personal, doesn’t it? Well, you’re right – it is personal. The pelvic floor is an anatomical region of the body, everyone’s body, that is at the base of your pelvis (A.K.A. floor), and helps to support structures above it, notably your internal organs. Now, that sounds important but boring…. Of course, it becomes interesting because this is also the place where all our personal, private matters happen: pooping, peeing, and sex. Yowza.

So, why is the pelvic floor so important? How your pelvic floor works, or doesn’t work, affects your whole person. Pelvic floor physical therapy, or PFPT, relies on fine tuning elements of typical physical therapy (think the kind of PT for knee replacements). If you have a weak muscle, either from fatigue (remember that one) or lack of tone, it’s not supportive. But  if you’re thinking, “I just need to do a ton of Kegels,” think again. 

Kegels are not always the solution! But the truest way to know is to get checked by a professional - a pelvic floor physical therapist.

What is considered a pelvic floor problem? More than you think, and not just for pregnant women. Many common “ailments” can indicate pelvic floor dysfunction (Merriam-Webster’s definition of dysfunction is impaired or abnormal functioning, not necessarily forever-and-ever unable to be normal.) Here are a few:

  • Peeing when you sneeze, cough, laugh, or jump (A.K.A. leakage. Note: Not just the elderly get this. Even elite athletes have leakage.)

  • Perhaps a little poo comes out with sneezing, coughing, etc. (that’s incontinence)

  • Constipation

  • Pain with sex, menstruation (even early in puberty), erections (again, in puberty, too)

  • Back pain

  • A disconnected feeling to an area of your body

  • Pregnancy and postpartum (Yes! This includes you 60-somethings who still have no feeling to your C-section scar, even though your child is 26 years old…)

Common does not mean normal. It’s okay to not be okay. It’s not okay to stay that way. 

Your body is the only body you’ll ever have. Don’t say, “it is what it is” – take action. You may find a brand-new way of living.

Thanks for reading.

Erin MS Warner is a Physical Therapist Assistant and a Pilates Instructor and has been trying to help people feel more like themselves for the last seven years.

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