Are Things Not Working Right “Down There?” Find out if it’s PFD.

Are your urinary or vaginal areas not functioning right these days? You know your body, and you know something’s wrong. You’re simply not your usual self, and you feel the effects. And maybe even your partner feels the effects. Turns out, you might have Pelvic Floor Dysfunction.

PFD is caused by physical changes which pull those areas downward, impeding the usual flow of things. If you’re pregnant or postpartum, the likelihood is high, but even if not, you can still suffer from PFD in your golden years, or if you’ve had significant weight gain.

If you are experiencing the following symptoms, it’s time to head straight to your gynecologist for an assessment. And fret not – thankfully there are solutions.

  • Urine escapes you during physical exertion, even laughing. You find yourself needing to cross your legs when you laugh, cough, jump, run, or otherwise exert yourself physically. Sanitary pads are now a necessity, every day of the month.
  • You don’t make it to the bathroom. You feel like you’re two years old and still learning the ropes; you can’t get to the potty in time. The pee just seems to come out, you don’t manage to hold it in, or you leak from your back end while straining.
  • Sex poses risks. You make sure to go to the bathroom before intercourse because you’re afraid you’ll leak out – from either end.
  • Sex is either painful, or lacking feeling. During penetration, your partner tells you he feels like there’s a “ball” in there, and you feel it too. Sex hurts you, and/or you feel like your usual sexual sensations are blocked.

What Can Be Done About PFD?

Your gynecologist will assess your particular situation and offer suitable solutions for you, either with physical therapy or surgery.          

  1. Pelvic rehabilitation. If you catch PFD at an early stage, the problem can likely be resolved with physical therapy rehab. At Miami Center of Excellence, we offer onsite PT’s who will train you to re-strengthen the pelvic area. We also offer a treatment called Mona Lisa Touch which can do wonders for sexual pain or incontinence. 
  2. Surgery. Depending on your level of PFD, surgery may be recommended. There are several procedures that could be helpful, and your gynecologist will assess the right one for you. Onsite, Miami Center for Excellence offers the following surgeries: LEEP, ESSURE, Mona Lisa Touch, hysteroscopy, and endometrial ablation. If you need other types of surgeries, your gynecologist will recommend a hospital for the procedure best for you. 

Heard of Kegels? They are exercises that maintain pelvic floor strength. All woman should be doing Kegels routinely, especially during pregnancy and postpartum, but also as they age.  There are a variety of Kegel exercises, so ask your gynecologist about what’s recommended.  

If you are pregnant, in addition to Kegels, you may also do perineal massage to work the perineal area before the birth. During the birth, work with your provider to be in the optimal position during pushing in order to lower the chances of perineal or pelvic damage.

The most important aspect of PFD is to tell your gynecologist what is going on. You are not alone ― in fact, the NIH reports that the rate of PFD is quite high: A quarter of all women experienced at least one symptom of PFD in a recent study. While the symptoms of PFD can be embarrassing, the solutions will allow you to live your life more fully again. Contact us for more information.