What you Should know about Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
Modern Age | May 03, 2023
Pelvic floor dysfunction is an uncomfortable issue that can lead to problems like urinary incontinence and lower back pain. Unfortunately, this issue is more common than most people realize. Nearly 24% of U.S. women are impacted, although men can also experience pelvic floor dysfunction.
The good news: There are solutions to help address pelvic floor dysfunction, including both preventative measures and treatments. Below are the details of how pelvic floor dysfunction happens and what therapies are available.
What Is Pelvic Floor Dysfunction?
An understanding of the pelvic floor anatomy can help clarify how and why pelvic floor dysfunction happens. The pelvic organs include the following:
The bladder, which holds urine
The rectum, where solid waste is stored
In men, the prostate
In women, the uterus and vagina
The pelvic floor also has muscles in it. These muscles tighten and relax, allowing you to urinate or release solid waste without issues. When pelvic floor dysfunction occurs, these muscles tighten excessively and become more difficult to relax.
As a result, you may struggle to have a bowel movement or experience urine or stool leakage. This can be uncomfortable and affect your quality of life.
Why Pelvic Floor Dysfunction Occurs
Pelvic floor dysfunction can occur for various reasons in both men and women. Traumatic injuries and pelvic surgery can be immediate causes.
Long-term causes include obesity and advancing age, as well as overuse of the pelvic muscles. For example, going to the bathroom too much or pushing too hard can result in poor muscle coordination.
Pregnancy and childbirth can also add stress to the pelvic floor muscles and cause lasting trauma. This is one reason pelvic floor dysfunction tends to be more common in women than men.
Finally, pelvic floor dysfunction seems to have a hereditary element. A family history of the condition may increase your risk.
Symptoms of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction
Symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction vary but may include:
Leaking urine or stool
Frequently needing to go to the bathroom
Difficulty with bowel movements (like having to push really hard)
Lower back pain with no other apparent cause
Ongoing pain in the pelvis, genitals, or rectum, even when you aren't trying to use the toilet
Pelvic floor dysfunction can also cause muscle spasms and co-exist with certain conditions in women and men. Women who experience this dysfunction may also feel pain during sex, while men can be more likely to experience erectile dysfunction and prostatitis.
Pelvic Floor Dysfunction Treatments
Pelvic floor dysfunction can interfere with daily life. Thankfully, help is available.
Modern Age offers both in-office and at-home therapies to address pelvic floor dysfunction. When you visit our clinics, you’ll find Emsella electromagnetic pelvic floor therapy. This non-invasive treatment addresses both pelvic floor dysfunction and one of its most significant symptoms: urinary incontinence.
During treatment, you’ll sit in a chair that transmits high-intensity electromagnetic waves to stimulate the pelvic floor muscles. It isn't painful and doesn’t require any anesthesia. You may feel a slight tingling sensation in the pelvic area.
For additional care at home, we offer the vFit Gold device, which improves the muscle tone of the pelvic floor. Designed by OB-GYNs, this device uses thermal energy and red-light therapy to stimulate blood flow, boost hydration, and increase sexual sensation.
If you’re experiencing pelvic floor dysfunction, you don’t have to keep living with the symptoms. Book a free general wellness consultation to get more insight into your health, and ask our clinicians about the pelvic floor treatment that’s right for you.