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Prenatal and Postpartum Physiotherapy at CAYA

Pregnancy is an extraordinary journey, but it’s also a time when a person’s body undergoes significant changes. Prenatal and postpartum physiotherapy focuses on helping individuals navigate these transformations both during pregnancy and after childbirth. This specialized form of physiotherapy ensures not only quicker recovery postpartum but also a healthier, more comfortable pregnancy.

What is Pelvic Health and Why is it Important?

Pelvic health is the optimal functioning of the bladder, bowel and reproductive organs. Pelvic health concerns the pelvic floor, which are a group of muscles that are key for controlling when you pee, aiding in sexual functions, and keeping the area around your lower back and hips stable. Pelvic health plays a crucial role in contributing to one’s overall physical, mental and social well-being. Physiotherapy during and and after pregnancy can help decrease pain and stress by promoting movement and exercise. Not only will this help your physical and mental health, it can help you feel more comfortable and confident throughout your pregnancy journey. 

What Symptoms and Issues can Prenatal and Postpartum Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy Address?

  • Round Ligament Pain: Often appears as either sharp or dull pain or aching in the lower abdomen or groin area and is commonly experienced on one or both sides. This discomfort arises from the stretching and pulling of the round ligaments that hold the uterus in the pelvis.
  • Lower Back Pain: The increased weight of a growing baby and your body to support the baby can result in increased tension, strain and posture changes that may lead to discomfort and pain in the lower back.
  • Diastasis Recti: a bulging or separation of the abdominal wall as it stretches to make room for a growing baby.
  • Sexual Pain or Discomfort: Changes in sexual function or pain during intercourse can occur due to weakened pelvic muscles or scar tissue from childbirth.
  • Urinary Incontinence: Involuntary urinary leakage that can occur due to coughing, sneezing, or exercising as well as a sudden urge that cannot be controlled in time to reach a restroom.
  • Bowel Concerns: Constipation or irregular bowel movement, as well as difficulty or inability controlling bowel movements. 

When to See a Pelvic Floor Physiotherapist?

Pelvic floor physio can be helpful from the moment you learn about your pregnancy up until the time you give birth. While there are no strict timelines, working with a pelvic floor physio throughout your pregnancy can help prepare you for the different stages of pregnancy and for delivery. In addition to pain management and preventative care, prenatal sessions can help you learn and try different birthing positions as well as breathing techniques and pelvic floor relaxation strategies. 

After giving birth, you can typically see a pelvic floor physio at six weeks postpartum, however this can vary based on your individual pace of healing and level of comfort. Pelvic floor physio can help treat pain and changes in your pelvic health function. 

Trauma-Informed Care

Oftentimes seeking care can be difficult, especially if you have previously received care where you and your healthcare needs were overlooked or inadequately addressed. At CAYA, our goal is to create a safe and inclusive environment even before you walk through our clinic doors. We recognize that entering a new space for the first time can be overwhelming. To help you get an idea of what the clinic looks like, we offer a virtual tour of the space that you can explore before arriving at your appointment. When you arrive at the clinic, your practitioner will come greet you at the front and invite you to one of our treatment rooms. The practitioner will then get to know you and work with you to create a treatment plan and offer tailored services to help meet your unique needs.

What to Expect at Your First Pelvic Floor Physio Appointment

At CAYA, we adopt a holistic approach to understanding your symptoms and unique healthcare needs. To identify the underlying causes of your concerns, we will ask you some questions that will help us understand the ways in which your pelvic health may be impacting your day to day functioning and overall well-being. Our intake form is broken down into sections and we encourage sharing what you feel comfortable sharing. This allows you to share your understanding of what brings you to see a pelvic health physiotherapist as well what you believe contributes to your conditions/symptoms. You can also provide any additional information you would like us to know, such as trauma history, accessibility needs, preferred terms for body parts, language, fears/concerns, or additional insights to how we can best support you. The information in the intake form provides your physiotherapist with an in-depth history of your presenting condition(s) to help facilitate an efficient and thorough assessment. We would then complete a comprehensive physical assessment, with the option of an internal exam to assess your pelvic health as well as any other areas in your body that may be contributing to discomfort or pain. Following the assessment, and based on your goals, we will create a personalized treatment plan to meet your specific needs and help support you through your pregnancy journey. 

Other services we offer to support you through your pregnancy and childbirth journey include counselling, acupuncture, scar tissue management, registered massage therapy, and dietitian counselling.

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