pelvic floor dysfunction

How to manage pelvic floor dysfunction?

Welcome to Procure Physio’s comprehensive guide on managing pelvic floor dysfunction. Pelvic floor dysfunction is characterized by impaired function or coordination of the pelvic floor muscles. This condition can lead to various symptoms that can significantly impact your quality of life. In this blog post, we will explore the definition of pelvic floor dysfunction, its symptoms, common causes, and the various treatment options available, focusing on the importance of physical therapy and exercise programs in managing this condition effectively.

Pelvic floor dysfunction is when the pelvic floor muscles, responsible for supporting the pelvic organs and controlling action, do not function optimally. This dysfunction can manifest as weakness, tightness, or impaired coordination of these muscles, leading to various symptoms. Common symptoms include urinary or fecal incontinence, pelvic pain, pelvic organ prolapse, and sexual dysfunction. Understanding the nature of pelvic floor dysfunction is essential in developing an effective management plan.

The symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction can vary among individuals. Some individuals may experience multiple symptoms, while others may have only one. Common symptoms include urinary incontinence (leakage of urine during activities such as coughing, sneezing, or exercise), fecal incontinence (involuntary leakage of stool), pelvic pain or discomfort, pelvic organ prolapse (a sensation of pressure or bulging in the pelvic area), pain during sexual intercourse, and difficulty emptying the bladder or bowels. It is important to note that these symptoms can significantly affect one’s physical, emotional, and social well-being. Seeking timely management and treatment can greatly improve your quality of life.

Causes of Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

Pelvic floor dysfunction can have various causes. Understanding these causes is crucial in managing the condition effectively. Some common causes include:

  1. Genetics and Family History: There may be a genetic predisposition to pelvic floor dysfunction, and a family history of the condition can increase the risk of developing it.
  2. Injury or Trauma to the Pelvic Region: Trauma, such as childbirth injuries, pelvic surgeries, or accidents, can contribute to pelvic floor dysfunction.
  3. Weak Abdominal and/or Back Muscles: Weak muscles in the abdominal and back areas can place excessive strain on the pelvic floor, leading to dysfunction.
  4. Overweight or Obesity: Excess weight can increase pressure on the pelvic floor muscles, compromising their function.
  5. Chronic Constipation: Frequent straining during bowel movements due to chronic constipation can weaken the pelvic floor muscles over time.

Diagnosing Pelvic Floor Dysfunction

Accurate diagnosis is crucial in managing pelvic floor dysfunction effectively. Healthcare professionals, including physiotherapists, employ various diagnostic methods to assess and diagnose the condition. These may include:

  1. Physical Examination: A physical examination involves an assessment of the pelvic floor muscles and their function. This may include an internal examination to assess muscle strength, tone, and coordination.
  2. Urodynamic Testing: Urodynamic testing helps evaluate bladder function, including how the bladder fills and empties. This test can provide insights into urinary symptoms associated with pelvic floor dysfunction.
  3. Imaging Tests (X-ray, CT, MRI): In some cases, imaging tests may be recommended to assess the pelvic organs’ structure and detect any abnormalities or pelvic organ prolapse.

Treatment Options for Pelvic Floor Dysfunction 

Several treatment options are available for managing pelvic floor dysfunction. Working with a healthcare professional, such as a physiotherapist, is essential to determine the most appropriate approach for your specific condition. Here are some standard treatment options:

  1. Medications (Antidepressants & Antimuscarinics): Medications may be prescribed to manage specific symptoms of pelvic floor dysfunction, such as urinary incontinence. Antidepressants and antimuscarinics can help relax the bladder and reduce urinary urgency.
  2. Physical Therapy & Exercise Programs: Physical therapy, particularly pelvic floor muscle training, is a cornerstone in managing pelvic floor dysfunction. A trained physiotherapist can guide you through exercises to strengthen and coordinate the pelvic floor muscles. These exercises, including Kegels and biofeedback techniques, can significantly improve symptoms and restore muscle function.
  3. Behavioral Modifications: Healthy habits and lifestyle changes can positively impact pelvic floor function. This may involve maintaining a healthy weight, managing chronic constipation, practicing good posture, and avoiding excessive straining during bowel movements.
  4. Education and Counseling: Education is vital in managing pelvic floor dysfunction. Understanding the condition, learning about proper bladder and bowel habits, and receiving counseling on managing symptoms can empower individuals in their journey toward better pelvic floor health.
  5. Electrical Stimulation: In some cases, electrical stimulation may enhance muscle coordination and strength in the pelvic floor. This technique uses low-level electrical currents to stimulate muscle contractions and promote better muscle function.


Managing pelvic floor dysfunction requires a comprehensive approach that addresses the underlying causes and symptoms. Procure Physio recognizes the importance of physical therapy and exercise programs in managing this condition effectively. By working with a qualified physiotherapist and following a personalized treatment plan, individuals can experience significant improvements in their pelvic floor function, alleviate symptoms, and regain confidence and control over their lives. Don’t let pelvic floor dysfunction limit your daily activities any longer – take the first step towards effective management and improved quality of life with Procure Physio.