Pelvic pain is defined by the Mayo Clinic as "pain in the region below the belly button and between the hips that lasts 6-months or longer."
Pelvic pain can develop in women or men, and can become debilitating issues for you life.
Pelvic pain often needs to be investigated by your doctor to rule out problems such as cancer, infections, and pregnancy-related issues.
But pain that lasts over 6 months is considered chronic, and may be categorized into one of the conditions below:
These conditions include:
Endometriosis: tissue that normally lines the inside of your uterus grows outside of it, creating abdominal and pelvic pain.
Adenomyosis: when endometrial tissues grows into the uterine musclar wall, creating pain and heavy bleeding.
Pelvic Adhesions: scar tissue from infections, endometriosis or past surgeries
Gastrointestinal Issues: including chronic constipation, diverticulosis, or IBS, which can result in bloating, diarrhea and constipation.
Interstitial Cystitis: chronic pain condition that can cause an inflammed or irritated bladder.
Pelvic Inflammatory Disease: infection in the reproductive organs, often from a sexually transmitted infectino.
Uterine Fibroids: non-cancerous tumors in the uterus.
Pelvic Floor Conditions: tension, spasming, or injury to the pelvic organs can cause chronic pelvic pain, pain with intercourse and issues with voiding.
Chronic Prostatitis: chronic pelvic pain in men associated with inflammation of the prostate without infection.
Treatment For Chronic Pelvic Pain
Medical treatment for chronic pelvic pain includes pain medication, hormonal treatments, and lifestyle changes in diet, exercise and stress management strategies.
Although these are all important, pelvic floor physical therapy is important for all people suffering from chronic pelvic pain to include in their treatment plan, as the pelvic floor is typically involved in some way in all chronic pelvic pain conditions.
Why The Pelvic Floor Matters
Chronic pain, especially in the pelvis, can create a guarding and protective response from the fascia, nerves, and ligaments in the pelvis.
Overtime, this can become a chronic tension pattern in the pelvic floor muscles, decreasing their ability to relax and can increase and aggravate pain.
It can also lead to entrapment of the nerves in the pelvis and restrict blood flow.
Many people that experience chronic pain conditions will also go on to develop some type of pelvic floor dysfunction as a result of this.
Alternatively, people with pelvic floor issues can develop chronic pelvic pain as a result of pelvic floor dysunction on its own. In other words, the pelvic floor muscles themselves can be soley responsible for all of your chronic pelvic pain!
If you are experiencing pelvic pain, make sure you contact our office and book a session today.
Still not sure if pelvic floor physical therapy is right for you? Make sure you check out our Ultimate Guide To Know If Pelvic Floor PT Is For You.