Post Natal Physiotherapy

No-one told me it would be so tiring! Childbirth is probably one of the most physically demanding things you can do, and before you know it the physical and mental demands of looking after a new born are upon you as a mother. These demands can take a toll on your body. Persistent pain in your joints and muscles, painful intercourse and incontinence are all common problems after having a baby and although they are common they are NOT ‘normal’. At Physiotherapy for Women we can help you reduce or eliminate these problems and guide you back into activity safely.
Childbirth and the postpartum period are extremely physically demanding. After having a baby whether by a vaginal delivery or caesarean birth your abdominal muscles and pelvic floor muscles have been stretched. It is important that you rehabilitate your body correctly to restore your normal daily function and prevent pain. Putting up with discomfort in the hope that will go away eventually is not a wise move.
Many women want to rush back into activity to lose the ‘baby weight’ however by doing this you may be doing exercises that create pain, incontinence (urine, gas or bowel movement loss) or descent of your pelvic organs. It is important to understand what exercise is appropriate and when and where to start.
What is normal after having a baby?
During the immediate postpartum period it is normal to feel some pelvic heaviness and discomfort, and to have some aches and pains. However if these problems persist beyond 6-8 weeks or are too severe you should see a physiotherapist who has a special interest and training in postnatal physiotherapy.
What is not normal after having a baby (6-8 weeks)?
• Ongoing muscular pain including back, pelvis, groin or abdominal pain.
• Leakage of urine, gas or faeces at any time (leakage when coughing, sneezing, jumping, lifting etc. is common but not normal)
• Frequent urination or urgency
• Pressure, heaviness or bulging in the vagina or rectum
• Feeling like you are not able to completely empty your bladder or bowels
• Sexual pain after 6weeks
• Painful scar tissue (from caesarean incisions or episiotomies and tears)
• Bulging of your abdomen during any exercise (see our blog on stomach separation)
• Difficulty doing everyday tasks
• Blocked milk ducts or mastitis (not normal at any time postpartum)
If you have any of these symptoms it is advised you see a women’s health physiotherapist.
At Physiotherapy for Women we can assist you with all of these issues. Do not do sit ups or intense core exercises, your physiotherapist can guide you in correctly improving your abdominal strength.
What does a physiotherapy consultation involve?
Your physiotherapist will:
• Ask you questions and want to know what is important for you to achieve
• Perform a thorough assessment of the muscles/joints involved in the presenting issue
• Include an internal examination if pelvic floor muscle weakness or dysfunction is the prime presenting problem
• Educate you on what is happening in your body
• Develop an individual treatment plan in consultation with you. This may include: manual therapy, massage, home exercises, advice, ultrasound or use of supporting devises (e.g. taping, belts)
• Help you become stronger, more functional and guide you on reaching your goals.


What Are Healthy Bowel Habits?

Normal bowel function is often described as “regular”.

This description often leads to some misunderstanding where you may think a healthy bowel function requires going to the toilet daily to pass a bowel motion.

Healthy bowel habits may vary from opening your bowels one to three times a day to three times per week. The most common time for a bowel opening is after a meal, especially breakfast, but this timing can vary.

The consistency of the stool or bowel motion needs to be easily passed and well formed.  Refer to the Bristol Stool Chart to see where your bowel motion is graded by clicking on:

Healthy bowel function also includes:

  • Being able to hold on with effective pelvic floor muscle action, once you feel the first urge to go to the toilet. This gives you the time to get to the toilet, remove clothing and sit down.
  • Once sitting down your bowel motion should be passed within several minutes.
  • Being able to experience ease in passing a bowel motion.
  • Complete emptying of your bowel in that short time frame of bowel opening.

Please call us at Physiotherapy for Women on 08 84433355 or visit our clinic at 3 Rowells Road in Lockleys for more information.

Preventive Physiotherapy is the smart choice

As healthcare continues to shift toward prevention, the physiotherapist’s role in health promotion and wellness continues to expand.
Also, Physiotherapists are well-trained to educate patients on chronic disease self-management and to empower patients through providing information and techniques to improve self-care.
Prevention is better than cure
Don’t wait for pain before paying attention to your health. You can make the choice to work towards preventing declining health and micro-tissue damage by working with your Physiotherapist now, before pain strikes.
The absence of pain does not equate to the absence of injury
The danger with using pain alone as a reliable indicator of injury or sickness is that more often than not it’s a delayed signal – by the time you feel pain, damage may have already been done that is harder to treat. Pain is generally not a sudden reaction but the result of an enduring problem that gradually builds over time.
Your health is an investment
Just as you would invest time and money into maintaining your vehicle, treat your body with the same care. Consider your body a vehicle that is engineered for a long life of peak performance and needs regular maintenance schedules with your Physiotherapist to avoid breakdown.
Optimal wellness is better than just being okay
If living an optimised physical lifestyle is important to you, then consider the meaning of wellness as ‘performing at your best’ rather than just feeling okay or without pain. While most of us now enjoy a longer life, if you are committed to optimal wellness you have the opportunity to make it a better one.
Health is a journey, not a destination. Good health relies on consistency
Don’t think of it as something on your ‘to do’ list that gets crossed off and concluded. This journey is a lifelong pursuit, but has massive daily benefits – starting today if you want it to.
A Physiotherapist is a perfect partner in your efforts to achieve life-long optimal health
A ‘wellness’ approach characterised by achieving long term, sustainable outcomes for the individual so that they can enjoy a healthy, injury-free lifestyle without that lingering threat of injury re-occurrence.
Please call us at Physiotherapy for Women on 08 84433355 or visit our clinic at 3 Rowells Road in Lockleys for more information.


Why is it so important to move more throughout the day

In addition to the benefits for general fitness and cardiovascular health, moving more also contributes to reduced sedentary behaviour that is far too often the norm due to desk jobs or sitting during the school day. In fact, recent research findings are revealing that sitting too much during the day can be detrimental to an individual’s health.
Our bodies are designed to move and be active. Unfortunately, many of us sit for hours a day at work, at home and traveling. We really need to get moving.
Sitting down for too long can lead to pretty serious problems such as:
• Weight gain
• Poor muscle tone and posture
• Increased risk of developing disease and dying earlier.
Even if we are physically active for at least 30 minutes every day, it’s still important to avoid sitting for too long throughout the rest of the day.
Sit less, stand up and move more throughout the day
It may not sound like much, but breaking up sitting time makes a big difference.
Try adding these simple activities to your day:
• Stand up at least every 30 minutes when ever you can
• Regularly change posture
• Move your arms and legs
• Walk around
At work
• Take short regular breaks from sitting
• Stand up to use the phone
• Think about using your feet first and walk to see colleagues instead of emailing
• Stand up at meetings
• Have walking meetings
• If you have to sit down for long period change posture often and move and stretch muscles
• Even standing up for as little as a minute may help lower the health risks.
At home
• Change posture often if you are using a computer or watching TV
• Stand up every 30 minutes or so
• Stand up and move during the ad breaks

Make Time Today

If you haven’t got time for anything else in the morning , make time to drink a big glass of water.

We lose a lot of oxygen through the night and to rejuvenate our cells, we need to supply them with water and oxygen.

Drink an extra glass of water daily and within a week you’ll begin to feel less tired.

If you don’t like the taste of water, squeeze some fresh lime into your water to give it taste and drink up

Plan for Relaxation

Plan for relaxation.
Most of us are busy during the week and even our weekends seem to become non-stop errands, chores, work and travel. So how do you find time to relax? Take the whole weekend (or at least part of it) to schedule some downtime for at least an hour or two. Whether it’s practicing your favourite hobby, seeing a movie with friends or even meditating quietly, do something every weekend that recharges you. You’ll not only feel better, but also beat stress.