If you have stress urinary incontinence, we provide expert physical therapy solutions so you can resolve this problem and get back to doing all the things you love!
Why do I lose urine when I laugh so hard?
Urinary incontinence is often not simple and can be very frustrating. Because the human body is a complex system and there are several types of urinary incontinence, women often don’t understand which type they have and aren’t aware of effective remedies to solve it. We can’t tell you how many times women have come to us saying “I’ve been doing my Kegels and they aren’t working.” Well, our answer to them is #1, maybe Kegels won’t help you and, in fact, they might worsen your incontinence and #2 maybe you aren’t doing the Kegels properly, a very common finding. Our skilled pelvic physical therapy stress incontinence treatment in Grand Rapids includes an in-depth examination to determine what is causing your leakage, what the status and function of your pelvic floor muscles are and what needs to be done to recover your bladder control. Maintaining continence is a complex coordination of your body managing your intra-abdominal pressure and keeping your bladder’s ability to fill urine, store urine and empty at the appropriate time. For your treatment we will discover the contributing factors in your incontinence and we will treat each of these. One professional society that is laser focused on pelvic health and urinary incontinence is AUGS. AUGS has published a brochure about stress incontinence that details treatment options. You can see on the brochure that pelvic floor physical therapy is a proven and recommended treatment for stress incontinence. Here’s the brochure: https://www.augs.org/assets/2/6/SUI.pdf
Stress Incontinence Treatment Works so you can jump again!
Stress urinary incontinence is the involuntary loss of urine with activities such as coughing, laughing, jumping, sneezing and raising our voice. While most of us have heard about stress incontinence, many people think is “normal” after you’ve had a baby. It is never normal to be leaking urine. Recovery of your urinary control is possible and with skilled physical therapy you will receive expert care and a customized treatment program to help you get back to walking, running, and exercise without incontinence. If you are losing urine it is likely that your muscular strategies from breathing, to abdominals, back muscles and the deep core, including your pelvic floor, are ineffective. With stress urinary incontinence, in particular, we typically find deficits in several components of coordinating these muscles together so that you can properly manage your intra-abdominal pressure changes.
Seriously, I can’t even laugh anymore??? Why won’t my stress incontinence get any better? So, here’s the deal, with each laugh there’s increased pressure generated in your abdomen. This pressure places a downward force on your bladder. Your bladder and urethra support structures should be able to keep everything in place. Your pelvic floor muscles should respond to all of this by activating and improving the support to the bladder and effectively “shutting the door” to the urethra, so no urine can escape. When this goes awry, instead what happens is a mixed-up response of any one of these things. Maybe your abdominal wall has a diastasis rectus abdominus, causing goofed up intra-abdominal pressure. Maybe you have a hypermobile urethra, so it can sag and bounce ever so slightly as you chuckle, leading to a drip, drip, drip of urine. Maybe your bladder has dropped a bit because its support is compromised. Maybe your pelvic floor muscles don’t pre-activate anymore, meaning they don’t turn on when they are supposed to. Maybe your pelvic floor muscles have deconditioned, they’re just tired and not responding. Like they’re on vacation, only they’re not, they’re supposed to be working.
Recovery from stress incontinence is more complex than simply doing Kegels. Continence is a coordination of all of your core muscles managing your intra-abdominal pressure. At Purple Mountain PT Dr. O’Keefe provides expertise at determining how you can best recover from your stress incontinence. Our stress incontinence physical therapy treatment program is detailed, systematic and customized to your body’s findings and it is right here in Grand Rapids. We evaluate your breathing, abdominal wall, back muscles, hip girdles and pelvic floor and teach you how to coordinate muscular control of all of yoru core muscles to facilitate the return of continence. This includes how to engage your pelvic floor, addressing speed, power, pre-activation, coordination, and release; this is a lot more complex than simply “do a kegel”.
At Purple Mountain PT we are experienced physical therapists with proven experience helping many people overcome their stress urinary incontinence. This is a passion of ours, it is what we do and what we’ve done for 20+ years. We are devoted to pelvic health and getting women back to being active and dry “down there.” Come give us a try and in your first visit we promise we will educate you about your own body’s performance and help you begin the process of recovery. If you would like to learn more about our stress incontinence treatment in Grand Rapids and how you can be evaluated, contact us today.
Dr. Maureen O’Keefe, DPT specializing in pelvic health, pelvic floor dysfunction, bladder, bowel and sexual health.