Thunder down under
A lot of women are embarrassed by feelings of pelvic pressure associated with pelvic organ prolapse. To understand exactly what is happening when you have prolapse, PT Julie Wiebe, makes reference to an inflated balloon in the abdomen. In order for the air to be properly balanced all sides of the balloon have to be intact and the pressure has to be equal. The pelvic floor acts as the bottom of the balloon. When the floor is weak (stressed part of the balloon) it is hyper response to increased downward pressure. Since we want to be practical here –let’s think of things that cause increased downward pressure on the pelvic floor. Constipation is a huge factor. Hard, dehydrated stool is really hard to pass and requires downward pressure. Drinking water and in taking extra fruits and vegetables can really help keep the stool soft. Also, picking up a heavy set of water bottles at the grocery store really adds extra pressure to your weakened pelvic floor. A pelvic floor PT can really help with prolapse management and education. The initial goal is to not make it any worse! Prolapse does not just happen to post-partum moms, women of all ages are in need of a strong, balanced pelvic floor!