The FITMUMs Program for Women’s Health
Currently, one in every three women suffer from incontinence. Unfortunately many people have accepted bladder leakage to be “the norm”, particularly women who have had children. Incontinence or bladder leakage is often very gradual, but if ignored can generate a much greater problem that will eventually rule your life. As a result many women also develop issues surrounding their confidence and emotional well-being.
Incontinence is a common symptom of pelvic floor dysfunction and may be an isolated problem or a sign of a more complex problem such as vaginal prolapse. Incontinence can also be a symptom associated with the bowel and anal passage.
Incontinence Affects One in Three Women
There are 3 types of urinary incontinence:
Stress urinary incontinence, which involves bladder leakage with coughing, sneezing, laughing or when you move quickly or suddenly, such as with exercise.
Urge urinary incontinence, which involves moments when you must find a toilet to urinate urgently, or you’ll wet yourself. For example you may need to know where all of the toilets are in your local shopping centre in case of a toileting emergency.
Over active bladder, which involves the need to urinate often, with short times between. You may feel that you must plan your shopping trips around very regular visits to the toilets.
Often these “types” of incontinence can overlap, with some women experiencing 2 or more of these bladder control problems.
It is often hard to know what is “normal” or “abnormal” when it comes to toileting habits. These questions may help.
- Do you go to the toilet more than 4 to 6 times per day?
- Do you need urinate more than 2 times per night?
- Do you leak urine when you cough, sneeze, lift, laugh or with exercise?
- Do you find you cannot control the passing of wind?
- Do you pass water with excessive stopping and starting?
- Do you feel an urgent need to empty your bladder or bowel?
Answering “yes” to any of these questions may indicate that you may be suffering from incontinence. You should take a pro-active step now to overcome these problems and prevent your bladder control from becoming worse.
Can I improve or beat my urinary incontinence?
The simple answer is yes!
At The FITMUMs Program, we have women’s health physiotherapists who are expert clinicians in the management of conditions unique to women. They have clinical expertise, excellent diagnostic and therapeutic skills in the assessment and treatment of all of the types of urinary incontinence.
Pelvic floor muscle retraining will help you gain control once again over your bladder. All woman of all ages need to have strong pelvic floor muscles. Pelvic floor exercises are also known as “Kegel” exercises. We know that women who find it hard to control their bladder and bowel have weakened pelvic floor muscles and can benefit greatly from pelvic floor muscle training.
Some women need to learn to relax, rather than strengthen their pelvic floor muscles as the muscles are assessed to be over active and in spasm, contributing to their poor bladder control. Our assessment will tell us which is you.
So what are these pelvic floor muscles? The floor of the pelvis is made up of layers of muscle and other tissue. This forms a sling or hammock “down there” between your legs. This hammock stretches from your pubic bone at the front to the tail bone at the back. This hammock is essential for the support of your pelvic organs, for normal bladder and bowel function, for sex and for postural support of your pelvis and spine.
How can FITMUMs help with treating urinary incontinence?
Our women’s health physiotherapists are passionate about providing the best possible care for our women suffering from urinary incontinence. Caring, sensitive and thorough assessment and management for each woman is our focus. We understand every woman is different.
Our women’s health physiotherapy assessment will always involve an internal vaginal examination. This, along with extensive questioning about your pelvic floor function and habits allow for the best diagnosis and management. The internal examination will also allow for the physiotherapist to properly assess any weakness, spasm or change to your pelvic floor muscles.
Your pelvic floor training and treatment will now target exactly your trouble spots. Remember every woman’s management of their incontinence will be different, and this is our difference.