It’s fair to say that Moms are the true superheroes…They take care of everyone in the family from the furry ones, the toddlers, the college kids, and their partners. So this article is for those awesome moms, who deserve that TLC-self care-me time!
No matter how old your kids are, if you have given birth, your body is in the postpartum state. Your body has gone through major changes and it is so important to give yourself the time to rebuild your body and mind. In the first year, postpartum, 80% of women report recurrent or continuous low back/pelvic pain but 64% of them report not seeking treatment. When left untreated, these conditions can progress and linger for up to 12+ years! (Bergstrom et al, 2017)
Some Moms are fortunate and have no complications postpartum but others may experience conditions such as incontinence where they feel like all of a sudden…they have to go!…. Or with one sneeze and…oopsie… a small leak in their underwear. 1 in 3 women has urinary incontinence at 3 months postpartum (Thorn & Rortveit, 2010). And those who experience incontinence during the first year postpartum have significantly higher chances of experiencing incontinence at 4 years postpartum. This is not surprising considering 49% of women in the U.S. over 60 years old were reported to have some type of incontinence from 2005 to 2018 (Abufaraj, 2021).
But you do not have to be a part of the statistics! Incontinence, whether urinary, anal, or fecal, is treatable with physical therapy! And so are other conditions such as pain with intercourse, diastasis recti, or low back/hip/pelvic girdle pain!
Don’t be discouraged if you haven’t found relief even after doing Kegels on your own. Research shows that most women do Kegels incorrectly and about 85% report that the verbally written instruction alone was not helpful (Weiss, 2019). With proper coaching from your physical therapist, you can claim your body back..it’s never too late! But don’t jump right into Kegels because this exercise is not for everyone, especially if you already have tight pelvic floor muscles.