By Stephanie A. Prendergast, DPT, MPT, Cofounder, PHRC Los Angeles
With May being Pregnancy Awareness Month, we wanted to share an overview of the pregnancy and postpartum services we offer here at the Pelvic Health and Rehabilitation Center. Along with the overview we will discuss what to expect in your appointment with additional blogs, videos and general pregnancy and postpartum resources at the bottom!
The pelvic floor and pelvic girdle muscles undergo significant changes during pregnancy and labor and delivery. Optimal pelvic health during pregnancy can help reduce musculoskeletal pain and dysfunction, ease labor and delivery, and help reduce postpartum complications. In 2018 the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology issued a statement acknowledging that postpartum care in the United States needs to be improved, suggesting the term “4th Trimester” should be used for the immediate postpartum period and that postpartum women need more care than what is currently being offered. All pregnant and postpartum women can benefit from pelvic floor physical therapy given the crucial role these muscles play during delivery and how prevalent dysfunction is after birth. Pelvic floor physical therapy reduces the risk of pelvic organ prolapse, urinary, bowel, and sexual dysfunction and pelvic pain. Similar to other diagnoses we treat, many of our patients tell us they wish they knew about us sooner.
But how does pelvic floor physical therapy help?
Prenatal and postnatal pelvic floor physical therapy begins with an evaluation with your physical therapist. During the evaluation, the physical therapist reviews your history with you, your current symptoms and functional challenges, and discusses your birth plan if you are prepartum and if postpartum, how your delivery went. Importantly, we understand the challenges of pregnancy and the postpartum period. During the physical examination the physical therapist examines muscles, tissues, joints, nerves, and movement patterns. Once your physical therapist completes the examination they review your findings with you. The physical therapist creates an assessment and short and long-term goals for your treatment plan. Typically, the frequency of physical therapy treatment is one time per week but this can vary greatly depending on the physical findings. You are given a home exercise program to compliment your in-person sessions, and your physical therapist will help to coordinate your recovery with your Obstetrician and the other members of your treatment team. We are here to help you recover and live your best life!
You can request an appointment with us either online or call any of our offices directly.
Are you unable to come see us in person? We offer virtual physical therapy appointments too!
Due to COVID-19, we understand people may prefer to utilize our services from their homes. We also understand that many people do not have access to pelvic floor physical therapy and we are here to help! The Pelvic Health and Rehabilitation Center is a multi-city company of highly trained and specialized pelvic floor physical therapists committed to helping people optimize their pelvic health and eliminate pelvic pain and dysfunction. We are here for you and ready to help, whether it is in-person or online.
Virtual sessions are available with PHRC pelvic floor physical therapists via our video platform, Zoom, or via phone. For more information and to schedule, please visit our digital healthcare page.
In addition to virtual consultation with our physical therapists, we also offer integrative health services with Jandra Mueller, DPT, MS. Jandra is a pelvic floor physical therapist who also has her Master’s degree in Integrative Health and Nutrition. She offers services such as hormone testing via the DUTCH test, comprehensive stool testing for gastrointestinal health concerns, and integrative health coaching and meal planning. For more information about her services and to schedule, please visit our Integrative Health website page.
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